May/June 2021: reality dawns

When we came back from our trip, my seedlings finally arrived. They had been languishing in a delivery depot somewhere for weeks. They were packed in a plastic coffin and it was obvious they had spent too long in it because they were rootbound and trying to burst out of the packaging. Some of the plants actually had broken stems.

To add insult to injury, I’d decided to prepare them at home by giving them a soak before taking them to the allotment. I potted them on for the roots, gave them a good watering and woke the next day to find they had been devoured by snails and slugs. B******s.

I had been expecting some setbacks, but this really got to me and made me question what I was doing (again) trying to run an allotment.

The good news though was that I had some successful growth, I had a pak choi, the carrot tops looked healthy and the leeks were still going strong.

I was also happy to see the Twigs had not shrivelled up and were still alive. No evidence of growth, but still upright, green and alive.

My weeding companion

There was a bit of weeding and watering to be done and the plot looked really nice and tidy. I was amazed at how much I enjoyed weeding and watering. I think it’s because there is an end product for all of your exertion. I was often joined by a pair of blackbirds who turned up to grab worms disturbed by my activity, this was another bonus. It is definitely therapeutic and allows you to empty your mind.

Nevertheless, the itchy feet set in again and we were off for a few days. A second mini heatwave ensued while we were in East Anglia and the pak choi bolted. This was another rookie mistake. These setbacks make me wonder again whether I am on a hiding to nothing. Year 2 of the Pandemic meant that most things seemed less dire than this time last year. The lockdowns were lifted and we were able to do UK trips, so we did while fully observing restrictions that were still in place.

We returned to welcome June with more sunny days, although it didn’t seem as great a summer as 2020, we still enjoyed some fine weather and the plot was looking good. I was and still am always amazed when things are still thriving despite my neglect.

I’m going to carry on while managing my expectations, however, it’s still proving to be a satisfying hobby.

See you next time.

Published by Elaine Batiste

I'm a teacher, a lifelong learner, a traveller, a maker, an adventurer and a 'want to do more' kind of gal.

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