So here is the most dramatic photo taken on the plot that I could find, did it catch your attention? The allotment as I mentioned in my first post has been such a great place for Sam and I, taking it on was one of the best decisions we made. Now don't get me wrong it hasn't all been skipping around bare foot marvelling at the delicate petals or the majestic flight of a bumble bee (in fact there has been none of that, the plot is riddled with red ant nests if you went around bare foot you'd be bitten and if you have ever been bitten by a red ant you will know that you don't think there is any majesty in those feckers *shakes fist*).
Anyway, we have had the plot for coming up to four years now, we were called to say we could have it (after being on the waiting list for a year) a couple of months before our wedding in 2011 which was perfect as it meant we went into full on sunflower growing mode! We had sunflowers decorating all corners of the farm we held our reception on, it looked great, we were so chuffed with ourselves.
To begin with we shared the plot with two other people, the first lady drifted off to another plot pretty quickly (to be fair things were a bit crowded), the second our good friend Laura was hit hard with work and family commitments which meant the plot was a struggle to maintain. We took over the whole thing last year but struggled to keep the weeds at bay and lost most of our motivation for it. We gave up the left hand half (in the photo above) last year with high hopes that an enthusiastic newcomer would tackle it with energy and vigor.... Nope! We finally saw the lady who has taken it over a couple of weeks ago she's done nothing to it since she took it on and things are becoming overgrown and the dandelion seeds are drifting onto our patch *huff*. We'll see what happens, with that, I've told her I'm happy to take back part or all of it if she can't manage but I think she might have her head in the clouds, she doesn't realise the commitment having a plot takes. It means evenings and weekends toiling away. Not fun for everyone and not something you can put off until later.
This all sounds very negative, it isn't intended to be, like any sort of community thing there are so many politics involved. But what makes it all worth while? The seedlings poking through the soil in spring, the flowers coming on the strawberry plants which means it won't be too much longer until you're cooking up a batch of jam (seriously you cannot beat homemade jam it's epic), steaming the purple sprouting broccoli you picked from the plot ten minutes ago or taking out a tub of broad bean pesto from the freezer during winter and stirring it through your pasta reminding you of the summer sunshine when you picked and made it.
These are the things that keep me coming back to the plot and digging out the weeds and lugging the heavy watering can about. When you work a desk job like I do there is immense satisfaction in working towards a tangible result, that steaming pot of soup packed with veg you grew, the salad packed with cucumbers and tomatoes you nurtured from seed. It's ace despite the aching muscles and the politics!