There’s a fantastic number of allotment, kitchen garden and grow your own bloggers out there. I read as many as I can for inspiration, advice and to find out what everyone is getting up to.
Here are a few of my favourite articles and blog posts from September.
1. It has been 6 months: I’ve only recently stumbled upon Rob and Valonia’s blog and this is a fantastic post demonstrating all they have achieved in 6 months. Rob and Valonia live with their cat Lolly on a wide beam narrowboat on the River Thames in Oxfordshire. I’m really looking forward to reading more about their adventures on the allotment.
2. Brussels Sprouts – Pruning and Topping: What would Christmas dinner be without the essential portion of Brussel Sprouts (if you are like me – in huge quantity!)? One way to make this delectable brassica even more special is to grow it yourself – Obvs! If you are growing Brussel Sprouts this year, here’s some super advice from Matt on pruning and topping the plants.
3. Dash and grab: If you like to ogle other people’s allotment booty, then let me add this post from Sue Garrett to your list of viewing pleasure. What’s wonderful about this post is the incredible amount of crops that can be collected from a plot at this time of year when you only have a moment to visit. In-out and flaunt it!
4. Snap shots from Community Garden Plot 31B: Emily recently shot to the top of her community garden waiting list. Like many people both here and in the US (Where Emily is), space to enjoy the experience of gardening can be limited when you reside in an urban environment and this is why the opportunity for community gardens and allotments is so important. I agree wholeheartedly with Emily when she says of her community garden ‘The gardens of others make 31b doubly as wonderful because it’s not just what I’m growing that matters. It’s what we’re all growing — together.’
5. Allotment Adventures: A Tidy Up: There’s a theme across the grow your own blogs in September – harvests! This post from Nic Dempsey is no different. It’s also the time when we start tidying up the season’s leftovers and begin making plans for the New Year. Nic outlines some of hers for the allotment.
6. Cucumbers Are Like Children: This is a short and sweet post from Alan, but it did make me chuckle. A snippet of wisdom.
7. The Times They Are A-Changing: When Bob Dylan wrote the song of the same name as Belinda’s blog post, he deliberately attempted to create an anthem of change for the moment. Without diluting Dylan’s lyrical description of society in the 1960s, I think this is an apt title for the seasonal change we experience at this time of year on the allotment or our gardens. It’s about harvests too.
8. The dying of the light: This isn’t a grow your own blog as such, but it is Andrew O’Brien and it is brilliant. When I read this post from AOB, not only did I find myself shaking my head and jealously muttering about his poetic brilliance, I nodded my head in absolute agreement. That’s a bit like patting your head and rubbing your tummy at the same time. As summer gives way to the autumn, we gardeners may find ourselves saddened by the loss of daylight long into the evening, stealing our time away from the allotment and garden. However, it is a season, like all of them, that has its own relative beauty and enjoyment and Andrew’s beautiful post should remind us to embrace all that it has to offer.
9. Cooking from the Allotment: Tomato Sauce: There’s clearly a theme from the grow your own blogs this month but I will not apologise. Harvesting and enjoying all of our work from the season should be something we embrace, shout about and most important stuff into our wide open ‘I grew this’ mouths. In another post from Nic, she is willingly doing this and showing us how she plans to enjoy the taste of homegrown tomatoes right through the winter.
10. Winter green manure – advantages and disadvantages: Matt might be looking to take the mantle of most blog posts referenced in my Top 10 from that Mark Willis. However, this is another brilliant one which I thoroughly enjoyed reading. Green manure is something I’ve not tried before. On my allotment what I’m always attempting to do is experiment with methods to find the ones that work best to meet my objectives with the garden. This is a first class read that outlines the advantages and disadvantages of using green manure on the plot over the winter and there are some recommendations for which ones to use and why.
You can read all the Sharpen Your Spades Top 10 posts here.
I love to read as many grow your own blogs as possible, especially by new allotment holders, kitchen gardeners and grow your own enthusiasts. Drop me a comment below with a blog I might be missing out on and I’ll pop it in my reader.
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