This weekend I've been excited and daunted by the prospect of sharing an allotment with a couple of friends. Actually it's half an allotment but is looks huge to me. It may have looked bigger because it's an overgrown wilderness of foot high grass, thistles, thorns and mystery weeds.
We had a look on Friday, the four of us plus one baby standing in the grass looking a little lost before trying to figure out how to tackle it. The consensus: cover most of it in plastic sheeting to kill everything off, test the soil, weed, feed and dig a corner of it and try to get some late cropping potatoes into said corner to break up the ground.
It's going to take a lot of work and I'm sure at least one of us will put their back out at some point, but I'm looking forward to when we've got the space cleared and the soil up to a good standard, ready for planting. With it being so neglected we'll have a blank canvas to play around with and when we actually start growing our own food it will feel like a real achievement, especially as gardening in an allotment is a step into the unknown for all of us.
Next steps? Get a pair of dungarees and headscarf for the Felicity Kendal look and decide who's car to use to fetch manure from the local stables...
By the way, we'll be blogging about our allotment at Don't Know Allotment.