Monday, 21 March 2011

Allotment- tea-ing

We spent a lot of time at the allotment this weekend. And I mean 'a lot.' Well, the weather was too good to miss out on, so off we trotted first thing Saturday morning to begin some earnest gardening. And for the first time in 4 and a half years, we took the camping stove with us, some tea bags and mugs, and a saucepan and a little flask of milk, and we stopped for elevenses and had a proper cup of tea.

Now usually, if we are having a long allotment stint, Andy takes a flask of tea or coffee and I take a large bottle of water. I refuse to drink tea from flasks because I think it tastes rank and I like tea and if I am going to drink it I want it made properly i.e fresh, with proper milk and preferably in a teapot but a cup 'n' spoon will do provided the milk goes in first. The allotment site is woefully short of fresh tea-making facilities i.e in the form of a clubhouse. It is also short on loos - actually, it has no loos - so I am always wary about drinking too much up there in case I get caught short for a tiddle.

But then we pay a peanuts rent each year, so one can't expect posh facilities, I suppose.

Anyway, we camped. And it was great! Andy managed not to set fire to/ explode the polytunnel with the butane cannister, and we had a nice cuppa and some biscuits to break up the morning stint. But we did have to nip home to have a spot of lunch and a tiddle before returning for round two in the afternoon.

'What I need,' I said,' is one of those lady toilet things. I think they are called 'She-wees'. And then I can nip into the polytunnel, pretend I am examining some seedlings, avail myself of the she-wee and I won't have to nip home when Nature calls.'
'Yes,' said Andy. 'And we can bring a picnic.'

Andy is very keen to picnic at the allotment.

Despite a whole day allotmenteering on Saturday, we went back on Sunday afternoon and did another stint. And as a result, Plot 87 is looking absolutely fabulous! We are ON TOP OF THINGS this year because we have a PROPER PLAN! HURRAH!!!

Sunday morning was spent making decisions about the back garden. What with the chickens being once more at large, because of the dismantlement of Cluckinghen Palace, we needed a GRAND PLAN to bring greenery to the back garden, because we sure as heck aren't going to see grass there again.

So the plan is...


Yes, dear reader, we are heading towards the next addition to the Much Malarkey Manor skills base which is to build living structures from willow. In fact, I've just ordered the kit. Just now. Five minutes ago. It comes with a free DVD for us willow structure virgins, and will be arriving by Friday, or early next week. It will go up near the back of the garden.

I said to the man, 'Will chickens have a go at it?'
And he said, 'I doubt it. They can never work out how to use the DVD player.'


He didn't really say that because he didn't rise to the bait of my willow versus chicken silliness. He said rabbits would eat it, but thought chickens would leave it alone. They'd better or I shall be weaving some chicken-sized willow baskets pretty darned quick, I can tell you.

I have planned an extensive herb garden, following in detail the information in Jekka McVicar's Complete Herb Book. I have considered pots versus in the ground, hardy versus annual, culinary versus aroma and have a definitive list of 25 to start off with including five or six I can put at the allotment in the semi-shaded bit by the polytunnel. The herb garden project will also involve me attempting some elementary building-with-bricks-type skills but you know me, I'll give anything like that a try. Can't be more complicated than Lego, surely?

And I have purchased some herbs and done some preliminary chicken tempting with them. The only one they showed a mild interest in was angelica, and that's only because I think it was big 'n' leafy-like; they both spat out the bit of leaf they pecked off, so fingers crossed the back garden will eventually return to some greeniness.

If the willow arch building goes well in the back garden, we are going to have a go at building a willow garden room at the allotment. A living willow garden room, eh? Now that WILL require the use of a tea-pot!


Bob said...

I am currently experimenting with shee wees, but i bought the other one, it, the one that isnt a shee wee, i think it was called 'the wiz'! Not had much luck yet, got tired of having to clean up the bathroom. Gonna try buying the real one, that is the real shee wee, and will let you know if i have better luck. I do so much camping It will be a bonus and a half to save the middle of the night sprint to the loo block.

Olly said...

Just wanted to express my condolences on the sad passing of Mrs M. I've been offline for a while, and only just caught up. She has entertained me for some time now through the medium of your blog - a sad day indeed.

Denise said...

Thank you, Olly. It's very odd not seeing her bobbing around the garden. I'll always have a soft spot for Miggins,as she was our original hen. Mrs Pumphrey spent two days looking for her, but I think has now resigned herself to the pottering companionship of Mrs Slocombe. Hope you are well and enjoying the onset of springtime!

Sarah, I have ordered a Sheewee!! I have a whoole blog to write about it. It caused me much entertainment yesterday, exploring the Shee Wee site!