the new allotment year began on March 1st.
Two plots are in the process of being re-let, this being the favourite time of year for people to surrender their allotments. There may be more, as a number of plot holders have still to pay their rent (which is now overdue). A warm welcome to the newbies.
I understand that nobody has come forward to act as the site representative!
Graeme Kennedy from the council has replaced the two broken concrete fence posts in the car park. Let us hope that people who park in the village hall car park will manage to avoid whacking them again! This was the only outstanding item from the original list of autumn / winter maintenance tasks.
The corrugated roofing over the seat was blown off and damaged during a storm in January. It has been patched up.
The water was turned on briefly last week to check for any winter damage. The taps, tanks and visible pipework all appear to be ok. The water will be turned on for the season on March 23rd.
All pruning material etc which had been left by plot holders near the incinerator in recent months was burned last week by Peter Stanaway.
Three of the deer fence posts are loose. They do not appear to have been whacked (and broken) by a vehicle, which is the usual problem. I will monitor them, and I will get them replaced if necessary.
The lock on the gate, which was starting to show signs of stiffening up in January, has had a few good squirts of wd40.
The rudimentary communal push mower has been checked. The blades had seized up. I have oiled them and it is working. For those who do not know, this mower can be found in the box in the copse at the east end of the site. It is only really suitable for short(ish) grass on reasonably level ground.
The badger has continued to be troublesome. It definitely is a badger (I eventually caught it on camera). His (or her) latest trick is to dig under the fence between the car park and the neighbouring property, removing bricks and other rubble as he goes. I put some chicken wire down but that failed miserably. Any information as to where he is getting into the site would be appreciated.
Five of the cable ties that fasten the deer netting to the fence posts have been removed (cut off). This follows on from the eleven that were cut off during the summer and autumn. In addition, two patches (which covered holes in the netting which had been created by gnawing animals) had been removed.
I have inherited some seeds which are surplus to requirements. They are: parsnip tender and true, asparagus pea and pea purple podded (all Crocus seeds). Any takers?
For the competitive types among you, a “best allotment in Britain” competition has recently been announced. Info here .. http://www.britainsbestallotment.co.uk/
Have a good growing season.