Tuesday, 14 April 2009

And so it begins!!!

Well, lets start at the beginning, when a number of months ago, I contacted Dublin county councils to take on an allotment after my balcony turned into a jungle and the strawberry plants that dotted it last summer provided lovely strawberries but alas only about 8 of them!!! I was kindly told by the county council man, 'oh yes, we have 4 or 5 allotment sites in south dublin county council, you can go on the waiting list as number 187!!' At that stage I decided the hunt was on for a private allotment.

Serving my addiction to internet forums, I found one that was in the process of being set up in Roundwood Co. Wicklow through the garden plans ireland website. A quick text to a load of friends looking for someone to go in on it with me found that most were more than happy to just pilfer the excess produce but thanks to a drunken rant a number of weeks before about how people should grow their own, Jemma came to the rescue and wanted in!! And so it began!!

We took a trip down to the site and found the most idyllic location, in a valley in wicklow, flanked by a beautiful river and surrounded by birch trees typical of the wicklow landscape. I could already see lazy summer days, tending the vegetables, fishing by the river and throwing some nice fresh caught trout on the BBQ to go with some freshly picked greens!!!

So come last weekend Me (sharon), Jemma, Cillian and Eoin went down to sign the lease and officially take residence of plot 103. Fencing is still to be finished but the ground is rotorvated and the next few weekends will be dedicated to the back breaking job of laying out the beds, raking and manuring, and racing to get our onions in before we run out of time. So far, we have decided on what to grow and how its going to be layed out. Onions, garlic, leeks, spring onions, lettuce, spinach, rocket, chard, cabbages, cauliflower, broccoli, carrots, parsnips, beans and peas, sweetcorn, courgettes, rasberries, rhubarb, strawberries, and we're trying a purple pumpkin for halloween.
Now I know the above is extremely ambitious for first time allotment holders but hey, Bite off more than you can chew, then chew it. Plan far more than you can do, then do it. Hitch your wagon to a star, keep your seat and there you are! or so an old school teacher used to tell me. We'll give it a go for our first year and consider it a learning experience!!

Jemma, Cillian and Eoin by the river at the back of plot 103.

Me and Jemma, standing in plot 103. It will improve, I promise!!


  1. ok Sharon,

    the pressure is on now, we are all watching :-), just joking. Best of luck with 103, trying to get going myself, time is always the problem,

  2. Thanks Veg and Flower time, sure we'll do our best and have learned loads for next year, and have more time to prepare by then! Best of look with yours, had a look at your blog, you are a busy little bee!! Most impressive!

  3. Well thank u kind lady, Have u visited organicgrowing pains.blogspot.com, a great blog.

  4. Hi Sharon I found you through veg and flower time.It is great to see another allotment blogger from Ireland.The best of luck for the coming season you are in at a good time of the year and have a very ambitious programme! My philosophy is 'try it',it may not grow anywhere else but could be great on your plot.It will be fun with friends to share, hopefully some of the hard work not just the produce!

  5. Thanks million Peggy, I reckon thats a good philosophy, sure we'll chuck everything in a see how it goes, I just hope we have something to show for it, all plans are for a harvest party in the autumn up on the plot, and I'm sure we'll at least have some lettuces. Its great to see so many private allotments springing up now and community gardens, heres to the revolution!!

  6. hi i have a 4 acre field in co laois 3 mile stradbally 6 mile portlaoise surrounded by birch trees with water laid on all ready for allotments spread the word reasonable rates jamesmccormack1@gmail.com.THANKS!!!!

  7. Best of luck with it James, I'll spread the word as best I can! Have you tried www.allotments.ie they are trying to list allotments by county, you may get some interest that way if you contact them and ask for your details to be listed.