Making an allotment seed bed

So far we haven’t had one of these, because, as you may have realised by now, we are sort of ‘squatters’ helping out on various allotments as we wait and hope for one of our own … which could be a long wait indeed, given that there are twice as many people on the waiting list as there are actual allotment plots on our site. Still, we’re happy being allotment-jobbing-gardeners, and it does mean we learn a huge amount from other people and get to experience many different styles of allotment.

So as well as contributing to Maurice’s pond (only by providing plants, he has a co-worker already who did the heavy digging) and helping Sally with a bit of trellis building, this weekend has been devoted to helping build a seed bed.

Seed beds are small areas of an allotment or garden used to germinate seedlings that can be moved to permanent sites later – the soil has to be very thoroughly dug over, with stones and other debris removed and we’ve been doing that, standing on a nice wide plank so that we don’t compress the soil behind us as we work. Now, with a few days of glorious fine weather, we are going up to rake the top surface to form a fine tilth – a soil top which is fine and crumbly and will allow plants to take root easily.

Then we’ll use the same plank to make a v-shaped drill in which to plant the seeds: the plank means the line of seedlings will be nice and straight without having to fiddle with sticks and strings. And then we wait for them to come up …

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Posted by The Allotment Blogger on Monday, May 12, 2008


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