Scrubbed Up Stash
0 comment Friday, August 1, 2014 |
Managed to get my half of the pot-womble sorted out today, so about 10 newly scrubbed pots are sitting outside, waiting for soil and whatever I can cram into them. They're going to stay in the raised bed for now to keep it out of harm's/sprog's way, and later on if we get some paving done, I'll put them down and get some soil in them.
I have also been asked to come into the local Parks Office and discuss the possibility of putting in some allotments to get this area gardening - I know, I'm completely mad for taking on yet another project! The issue is, as affluent as this town seems to be, most of the money is from tourist trade or London folks who have weekend homes here - the locals are actually rather destitute, and where I live is one of the worst areas here. The last two winters, due to our area having no plows and very little grit, anyone who relied on public transportation was completely cut off from getting into town, including the supermarket. On top of that, our local Tesco was apparently three days away from running out of food due to road problems. Having available food is a bit more important than people realise, not merely from a saving on bills standpoint, but also for hard times. Unfortunately, getting people here interested in anything other than cigarettes and Strongbow is a bit of a challenge! But I really can't imagine that there is no one interested in having a plot somewhere - I just don't think they know where to start, and I can't blame them; we have horrible chalky, flinty soil and it would cost a fortune to make it plant-ready. But as that's the way things are done, no one here has an inkling about making raised beds, or even how much food you can cram into one if you do your homework.
Indeed, I think the main issue with a lot of families having allotments (not only due to travelling) is also due to allotment slots themselves, which are often huge and overwhelming - if you've never gardened before, a 10m by 20m plot seems like an impossible challenge, and you're not "allowed" to share with others. A raised bed the size of 2mx1m will do the job for a family of four; it's less daunting, and is a lot more child friendly (gods knows when the council used to till over my new allotment I'd spend the first few days picking out glass, rusty nails, and so on, so no way could I bring my son, and children weren't welcome anyway). The name of the game is "low maintenance" and lots of encouragement and support for lone parents and busy families. Of course it's not the "traditional" way of doing things, so trying to get the Old Guard to take a new approach is one of the bigger challenges. In any event, I'll see what I can do as there are two lots which quite honestly aren't in why not do something with it? It may come to nowt but at least I'll have asked.
In other planty news, mates and I are all propogating like mad, and next month we're going to be trading our surplus plants and taking cuttings. I'm being offered lavender, passionflower, and all sorts of other awesome planty goodness, and I've plenty of peas, asters, and zinnias to share. Later on we'll be hitting the pick your owns, sharing surplus harvests and finding ways to preserve our stashes - I'm still trying to find a freezer so I can get ready to lay some food by.
Interesting, isn't it, how many doors gardening seems to open? Most of us are disabled or otherwise on hard times, but we're creating a community now to get us active and interacting, working with one another and each helping each other gild our cages a bit - and that even means flying out from time to time, which is invaluable.