All allotment holders should now have received their allotment rent renewals in the post. If you have not yet received yours please do let us know by contacting Lara at email@example.com.
In 2016 the rents rose to £57.50, bringing the allotments to the desired breakeven point. The allotment rent for 2017 will remain unchanged, however you will have noticed from your renewal an additional £2.00 charge. We listened to representations you made after we advised about the difficulties in getting cost effective public liability insurance for your plot and have negotiated a group scheme on your behalf. The insurance, taken out with Shield Insurance will now cover you for any third party injury on your own allotment plot and insure you against potential negligence claims. Please do make sure you pay the correct amount as stated on your invoice as a number of payments made last year fell slightly short and it is expensive and time consuming to chase those who have not paid the correct amount.
If your circumstances have changed and you do not intend to renew your tenancy for 2017 please do let us know as soon as possible so that the next tenant has chance to prepare the plot for the Spring. You can notify us by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or calling Lara or Kevin on 01252 712667.
Digging over the soil in winter and early spring time will bring slug’s eggs to the surface where they are more likely to be killed by frosts or eaten by birds. The slug eggs are pearly white and about 3 mm in diameter and are found in clusters.
In April, increasing temperatures and wet weather provided good conditions for slugs to grow and multiply. No single method of control will be completely effective so you should try several strategies. Here are a few ideas:
Hunt for slugs at dusk or dawn with a flashlight.
During the day slugs congregate in moist dark places. Create suitable hiding spots such as overturned grapefruit halves and then gather slugs from them.
Remove debris from your plot to remove slug hiding places.
Place beer traps around the edges of beds. Place sugary beer into a container so that the slug is able to crawl into the container easily.
Raise seedlings indoors and plant out when they are more able to sustain attack.
Theme: Repair Café Venue: Council Offices, Council Chamber, South Street
This year the Winter Lecture will be led by Professor Martin Charter who runs the highly successful Farnham repair café. You will learn all about the ground breaking initiative, where people bring all sorts of items and are helped with their repair, and it’s role within the local community.
If you would like to come along to this evening please email Lara Prior at email@example.com to ensure we have enough chairs and refreshments for everyone.
Why not try growing some rhubarb on your plot? Place a bucket or similar to exclude the light over the crown. In a few weeks you will then have some lovely pink sticks of rhubarb to enjoy.
Now is the time, if you haven’t already, to get cracking with digging your allotment plot. It is better for yourself and your back to do a little at a time, rather than try and tackle it all in one go. If the ground is wet do not try and dig it as you will wreck the soil structure.
Whilst digging, add some of your own compost to the ground but avoid doing this where you are planning to plant root crops.
Don’t forget to order or buy your potatoes early as the variety you want may be sold out, they are available in garden centres now.
If you are planning to plant fruit trees and bushes (raspberries and other cane fruit), this needs to be done very soon. The trees and bushes should be planted no later than the end of March. Do not plant bare rooted trees in frosty weather or if the ground is frozen.
Pruning of apple and pear trees should be done this month and certainly no later than the end of February as the fruit buds will be starting to swell. Do not do this task in frosty weather.
Gooseberries should be pruned now.
Shorten the side shoots on red and white currants to just one bud and remove old stems crowding the centre of the bush. Do not prune blackcurrants this way as they fruit on new shoots made the previous year.
Autumn fruiting raspberry canes can now be cut down. Do not cut down summer fruiting raspberry canes as you will have no fruit in the summer. Summer fruiting raspberries fruit on the canes they made in the previous year. The new canes are light brown in colour, whilst the older canes still have remnants of the old fruit on them.
If in doubt talk to the site rep or give Kevin a call for advice.