Jobs for this Month

The National Allotment Society has some great advice for Jobs to be getting on with. As well as Harvesting we can be getting on with planting too. Remember: if anyone has any surplus seeds to drop them in our Superbly-Signed Sharing Shed at the top of the site.

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Sounds like the best crops to be going at have an Oriental theme. For some inspiration take a look at this BBC Good Food Guide which has recipes that can put what you sow to good use.

If you are in the process of clearing your plot and want to spread some fresh manure why not connect with other plot-holders via our Facebook page and spread not only some well digested fertiliser but the cost too.

The website will be digging their plot over after a relatively fallow year. If you are just getting started and want to know more you could check out this site which has videos to go with their concise advise.

Pests are a year round thing. Most prominent at the moment should be wasps (I can attest to that). While a sting isn’t nice they’re also after the aphids and caterpillars hiding the other side of that perfect looking Apple.

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Latest from the Station Allotments

September is here which means the harvest is starting. There are plenty of spoils to be had for a good summer spent toiling against the rainfall. This site started in 2014 but is really in it’s infancy in terms of what we want it to do. As a result a plea: if you’ve had a bumper crop this year or perhaps lovingly nurtured one particular wonderbean please send us your pictures to encourage/amuse others. You can contact us at stationallotmentwebsite@gmail.com or via Twitter @ChooChooPlot. To get the ball rolling check out these twisty carrots from last year’s haul:

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Notices (September 2016)

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A quick summary of the latest notices. Most are visible on our fantastic noticeboards near the two entrances to the site:

RENT

Most plot-holders will have received their Invoice for Allotment Rent. We try and encourage each plot to be clearly labelled so if, like me, you aren’t always sure what yours is called then your notice is a good reminder.

Prices for a full plot 2016/17 are £72. Rent must be paid by 7th/9th November. If you are unable to pay by this time then you can email stationallotmentslettings@gmail.com or stationallotmenttreasurer@gmail.com.

WORKING PARTIES

We have one more advertised Working Party on Saturday 1st October at 2pm. The meet-ups over the summer have been a success and it would be nice to carry this on into the cooler months.

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Examples of work done so far include sign painting, clearing paths and overgrown pockets of the site. When appropriate for the wildlife the hedges are trimmed back. If you want to get in touch with those you meet at these events plus follow the work already done, we have set up a Facebook Group https://www.facebook.com/headingleystationallotments/. Check us out sometime and give us a Like

 

April Newsletter for Plotholders

Hi everyone!

Here’s your update for April.

Upcoming events

On Sunday 17th April the committee is holding a fuddle and clean-up day to tidy up the site ready for Spring (and socialise!). A fuddle is where everyone brings a little something to eat and share. If you’re free, please come along from 10am to meet the other plot holders and spruce up the site.

What’s your plot number?

To make it easier for Dave, our lettings officer, to let out vacant plots and navigate the site, please can you number your plot clearly. This can be on a sign, a rock, on the side of your shed or any way you want as long as we can see the number. The committee are doing regular site inspections now the new growing season is started and will be getting in touch with anyone who hasn’t numbered their plot.

Site upkeep

Please keep any rubbish you’re clearing from your plots on your plot until you can dispose of it safely. You can also put natural materials which are safe to burn on the ‘bonfire plot’, 2B – more details below. We’re also hoping to hire a skip soon for anything that can’t be burned.

Please make sure you keep soil, plants and equipment off communal paths as it’s hard to mow them and difficult for other plot holders to access their plots.

Changed your address?

If you’ve moved house, changed email address or phone number, please make sure the committee knows so they can keep an up-to-date record and are able to get hold of you.

You can email Dave Johnson (lettings officer) and Janette Dooley (secretary) who will be able to update your details. If you don’t use email, please refer to the phone number on your plot contact.

Dave: stationallotmentslettings@gmail.com

Janette: secretary.stationallotments@gmail.com

Rent increase

Unfortunately, there’s been an increase in the rent for plots for 2016/2017. Site fees and water have stayed the same. We’ll be putting the details up on the website as soon as possible so you have an idea of how much you’ll be paying next year.

Our treasurer, Jenny Hennigan, will get in touch with you when the rents are due with how you can pay and by when.

Get rid of rubbish on the bonfire plot

One of the hard-to-work plots has been set aside as the ‘bonfire plot’. This is plot 2B, which is near the entrance to the site closest to Headingley train station. The plot is numbered so you should be able to find it.

You can put any natural materials on there which will burn safely, but please don’t put anything like plastic or hazardous materials.

Recycling and seed bank centre

The committee has set up a recycling and seed bank centre in the concrete hut near the top entrance (just by the Portaloo). Feel free to use any of the materials in there, and put anything you no longer want to use but could still be useful for someone else in there – for example, hard-wearing green bags, flower pots, wood, etc. It’s not a dump, so please make sure everything is in good nick.

There’s also a small seed bank in there. Again, feel free to take what you need, making sure there’s enough for other people, and add anything to the pile which you no longer want to sow on your own plot.

Useful links

Dave has sent in a useful list of Facebook pages/groups, and YouTube videos to like, join and watch if you’d like to know more about gardening. Click on any of the links below to be shown the Facebook group or YouTube channel. If you have any links you’d like to share please let us know in the comments.

Facebook Pages and Groups

Friends of the Horticultural Channel (page)

The Allotment Shed Forum (group)

Keep Calm and Make Compost (group)

A gardening programme totally dedicated to gardens and allotments (group)

Allotment Swaps (group)

YouTube channels

The Eden Project

The Horticultural Channel

Dave’s Allotment by Blustardave (funny guy)

 

If you have any updates you’d like to share with other plotholders for the next update, please let us know. You can either comment on here or let one of the committee members know.

Preparing the Ground

This is the first attempt at getting something up and running for our allotment, complete with terrible punning and some pictures so it appears more dynamic than it actually is! This initial blurb is intended as a basic intro to people interested in taking on a plot with us rather than existing members. It is as much a proof of concept for the Committee so we can try and expand our public profile and interest YOU in our site.

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As the site opens out from the Queenswood Road entrance

There are two ways onto site by car: either from Queenswood Road or under the bridge at Headingley Railway Station, following the path round to the right. The gates are padlocked: once you’ve been approved by the Committee we’ll let you know the code and you can get started.

Currently about half our plots are occupied, and we are always interested in new members. Uncertainty over the pricing of allotments has meant fewer renewals in the past few years, and people obviously lead busy lives. Our turnover can be pretty high. Unattended plots mean high grass and persistent root weeds. Once you have cut the grass down you might still be left with something pictured below.

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The beginnings of a plot marked out with wooden stakes

A plot can be full, half or a quarter size. To get an idea of what this means it is best to arrange a visit and someone will show you around. Contact details and suggested times can be published later once Committee Members have viewed this WordPress and passed on comments/shared any ideas. The growing season is coming to a close and we’re not in any rush. Please be patient. Details are probably listed elsewhere – try the Leeds City Council website or even take a stroll down the ginnel between us and the neighbouring site. A number is provided on the bulletin board.

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Noticeboard for important info and useful photo for a blog banner

Noone would make outlandish claims to be an expert. The allotments are a hobby, as with this blog/site. What we would like to do is make the place feel inclusive, and to do our best. We’re not in competition with anyone (unless we put ourselves forward). There are as many failures as successes, so don’t let any uncertainty hold you back.

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We have made a number of attempts to improve the site in recent years. The Committee successfully applied for a grant to buy a shipping container. You’ll see this if you come on site at the Queenswood Road end. It is used to stored equipment bought and maintained by us as a Association. We try and organise monthly Working Parties between spring and autumn. These can have a touch of the ‘usual suspects’ about them – so if you can spare some time when they are advertised we would be very grateful.

 

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