Friday, December 02, 2016

Missive Day 2016

If the Allotment Association were a country, Missive Day would be like our national day. It's when we pay our rent and community association dues for the year ahead. And so here we are now with a whole year gone. I've just been looking at this blog's posts from December 2015. Blimey. A year ago we were getting inundated by Storm Desmond, I was just beginning to a get an angle on drainage, and the beds were far from level - there were tons of earth still to move. I like this set of 3 photos which show how the water built up into the earliest incarnation of the pond during that storm.  And here we are in December again, with only Angus so far, and that was confined to southern England, we had heavy frosts the while.

Yesterday I had a blinding couple of hours in terms of tasks done:

  • Built a structure, approximately 7ft long by 3 or 4ft wide and deep, to keep my tools and other bits and pieces in. I used the 2 old doors and a sheet of tin, nailed together with a couple of the least rotten planks from the shed, and propped up by iron rods hammered into the ground,
  • Move everything into said structure.
  • Cleared the area nearest the proposed bonfire of anything flammable.
  • Rolled the barrel full of earth and perennial roots (a failed experiment designed to drown them) near the bonfire, emptied it there, to burn when it gets really going; bloody heavy, a barrel of earth. 
  • Put that empty barrel next to the new structure, to give it more support, because...
  • I emptied the comfrey solution barrel, which had been getting water from the now-demolished shed, and was too close to the bonfire; I did this by means of a handle-less bucket, carrying it to the other barrel about 10yds away; also bloody hard work. 
Finally, I got the fork into the ground which had lain between the southern boundary fence and the shed. Rock hard. Clay and stones and the inevitable bits of glass. I'm still itching to get this SE bed dug over. Usually, of course, one wouldn't bother digging a bed over in Winter, but it's hardly ever been gardened, so it wants an initial ground breaking anyway, get the big stones out, before riddling and manuring next year.

Tomorrow is Missives Day, and the Last Big Bonfire Day. I've got a gallon of diesel to help things along, and I'm prepared to spend the entire evening to make sure it gets properly burned down. And then I'll have a plot cleared of rubbish. At last.