The key moment in April came when our allotments featured in a national gardening magazine, “Grow It”. A great article full of photos! And then towards the end of the month the lottie chairman, John and I were interviewed by Matt Biggs for an article in the “Edible Garden” magazine. (Please excuse the name dropping!)
So let’s take a wander around the site starting at our own plot, number 37, where the last of the leeks are still in the ground but the kale is beginning to go to seed. Seeds we sowed a few weeks ago are now germinating and popping their heads above the soil. The autumn sown broad beans are flowering as are our currants and gooseberries. So it is all systems go.
As we began our wander we were pleased to see two families from the nearby estate wandering around our interest trail with their children. Later they were sat in the willow dome reading stories. This is what community allotments are all about! We shall start our wanderings at Hut 2, one of our communal huts and move on to the Autumn Garden, one of our “Gardens of the Seasons”.
Moving on from the Autumn Garden towards the first communal orchard we follow a native hedge in which for the first time a Song Thrush has nested. the parents are busy feeding their young and collect worms and bugs from plots right under the noses of the gardeners.
In Crowmeole Orchard flowering spring bulbs are coming to an end as Camassias and Allium push up their flowering buds. The apples, pears and plums are covered in pink or white blossom.
As we wandered through this orchard a flock of Long Tailed tits in their pink and brown livery flew off in the bouncing flight pattern, having fed on the peanuts in the feeders. Their long trailing tails followed on. We moved on following paths between plots towards the Spring Garden and Sensory Garden near the old oak tree. Plots are full of ridged rows of sown potatoes and white plastic plant labels marking newly sown rows.
The Spring Garden in its second spring is looking so good and has become a popular place for allotment holders and visitors.
Through the Willow Tunnel is one of our many picnic benches where we stop for coffee on our April wanderings. As we enjoyed our brew curlews called in nearby fields with their mournful song and the Great Spotted Woodpeckers flew busily overhead.
The Winter Garden has passed its peak after being so popular for months. We have been busy giving it a sort out.
We wandered next through the Woodcote Orchard where the paths are cut short and neatly through the long grass, and looked at the Turf Spiral, a favourite of the children.
Our final stop on the way back to the car park was the Herb Garden where herbs are now well established. This last section of our lottie wander took a lot longer than the others as we enjoyed a good chat with Dave and Jean. We put the world to rights and shared details of how all our crops were getting on.