Before drafting this post (which I started writing in April), I looked back to last years ‘first allotment sowings of 2018’ story. I see we are a bit ahead of ourselves this year thanks to Dave providing us with a ready-to-sow growing patch. I was never this organised when I had an allotment of my own (a bit of a fair weather gardener between April and October really). I usually took my birthday in February as the reminder to start the sowing year with tomato seeds on my windowsill. The ancient tradition of planting potatoes on Good Friday was my nudge to get out on the allotment. This year Easter was later so it’s just as well I have Dave sending me friendly texts asking if I’m going to put anything in or whether I want him to.
I visited the allotment for the first time at the end of March. I took Luca while Euan was at school. My goodness what a difference a year makes with a toddler. Although Luca was in many of the ‘gardening with kids’ posts from 2018 he wasn’t really all that useful. In fact truth be told it was a bit exasperating having to keep telling him to watch where he was stepping and have him refuse help as he trampled and heaved his way from the water butt to the plot. Now he’s 3 it was quite a different story. His usual independence about doing everything himself shone through and he helped to plant some strawberry runners and potatoes.
Dave had already sown some lettuces, onions and broad beans for us and Luca heeded the warnings about not standing on plants well. It was delightful to watch him busying about and naming the plants. I think we’ll have our most productive year yet with two little helpers on the case. I was so delighted when I downloaded my photos to see I’d captured this moment of watering can filling from Dave’s hose to save Luca’s little legs.
It took another month before we made it to the allotment with Euan in the Easter holidays! George’s parents moved to Gloucester from London last month so we’ve been spending more time at their new place (which has a garden, veg patch and a big field). I’ve been busy with my Weleda training and skincare consultations so there’s been less time for gardening. I think I’d very accurately be accused of neglect if it was my plot alone.
And here we are. Half way through May and with our latest Whatsapp update from plot guardian Dave (below). He’s planted runner beans at the bottom of our empty canes and let us know that our lettuces are ready to eat. We’ve left some space to plant tomatoes (always my first allotment love) and it’s half term next week so I’m hopeful of at least one plot visit. We love catching up with Dave and soaking up the atmosphere and fresh air at the allotment. It’s worth scheduling a visit for those things alone.
If you’re interested in previous years ”gardening with kids’‘ click here