You have now made your choice, you have your plot and suddenly lots of questions start to flood into your mind;

  • Where do I begin?
  • What plants should I grow and when do I grow them?
  • What gardening equipment do I need?

Where do I begin?

How do I clear my plot?

Hopefully your plot is not overgrown but 9 times out of 10 times it is, so clearing your plot is your first step. Do not use a rotavator to clear all the weeds, as this will cut and spread the weeds multiple times. The best way is to cut them down slightly below knee height (stubble), then dig them out and hoe regularly (especially on dry days).

Information regarding ‘getting rid of weeds organically

Working your plot

When your plot is clear of weeds and you can see bare soil, you will need to dig, break up the soil and then add organic matter (manure and leaf mould).

Then you will need to test the pH level of the soil, this will tell you how acidic or alkaline the soil is and indicate whether or not to add lime:

Understanding pH and testing soil

Top ten organic fertilizers

Lime or liming

Finally make sure you equip your plot with a shed, compost bins and a storage area for items such as canes.

What plants should I grow and when do I grow them?

The easiest way to choose which plants to grow is to see what your neighbouring plot holders are growing. Speak to your local plot holders about what plants grow well on the allotment before you get started. A number of plants you could think about growing are:

Crop Rotation

This system helps to reduce the likelihood that pests and diseases will attack your produce. This can happen if the same area of the plot is used for the same vegetables year after year. It can also balance the amount of nutrients removed from the soil by different plants. The plot holder is able to add manure or nutrients to the soil at regular intervals on different parts of the plot.

To follow either a three or a four year crop rotation please click here

When Do I Grow Them?

To know exactly when to plant on your plot, you will need to have a seed calendar of when to plant. Seed calendar, this explains exactly when to plant the seeds, which you have chosen to grow on your plot.

What gardening equipment do I need?

Having the right tools will make you more efficient when working on your plot. Here is a selection of tools that you may find most useful.

Spade
Garden Fork
Water carrier (x two)
Rake
Hoe
Pen knife
Dibber
Garden Trowel
Scissors
Secateurs
Garden Twine
Garden Seat

Information relating to essential allotment tools please click here

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