There is always a worry, when you ask for volunteers, that the weather will dampen their enthusiasm.

Maybe it was the chance to improve the environment, good company or the promise of cake. But, a little bit of rain didn't put off our volunteers.

So, this was day two of the Radbourne Walk enhancement plan. Simon had planned another wildflower meadow - this time at the Occupation Road end of the path. We also had plans to start the loggery. We know we have Stag-horn beetles on the allotments because one of our plot holders found their larvae in his compost bin.

HOW I GOT STARTED ON MY WEED INFESTED PLOT

So you reached the top of the waiting list and you now have the key to the allotment site – congratulations. Now the fun begins.

I was on the waiting list for about 3 years and I’ve had my plot since May 2011. So, I’m still a relative newbie. Some people have had plots for over 20 years.

This is a very personal view of how to get started – based on what I’ve learnt from making mistakes and talking to more experienced allotmenteers. I hope it helps.

A well cared for allotment plot

If you would like to join our waiting list please download the form on the Pathways website.

On Saturday morning (1st February) a group of Northfield allotment plot holders and local residents got together to put a plan into action. Luck was with them because the sun shone - not a drop of rain fell all morning.

Last night thirty plot holders turned up for the inaugural AGM of the Ealing Dean Allotment Society. We did a bit of tweaking to the proposed constitution and then we took a vote. Everyone was in favour of the new constitution - no one voted against and there were no abstentions.

I have a favourite TV programme - it's called DIY SOS. They help people who have become overwhelmed with the task of extending their home. Some poor soul works every weekend, every evening, every spare moment - but the building work never seems to be finished. Then maybe illness slows them down and it all grinds to a halt. At DIY SOS they bring expertise - but importantly they throw a lot of people at the problem. 
 
So, today was day-two on plot 243. 
 
On day-one we used brush cutters and strimmers, today it was rakes and a box of matches.
 

We have a plot - unloved and neglected - in the corner of the site. It has been left unused for a long time and the longer it is left the worse it will get. It's really sad because it is a great plot, the soil is good and there are even some raised beds. There are two fruit trees, raspberries, holly for a Christmas wreath, and you can see bulbs pushing through the soil. It is close to a gate and water - what more could you want.
 

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