Tomorrow is the start date for the tenancy on second allotment. Tonight, when OH comes home from work, we’ll have a “sub-committee” meeting to discuss the plots – plans, projects, etc., get ourselves more organised with some sort of calendar for liming/manuring/top dressing and foliar feeding…..

Tomorrow is also the first day of March, and perhaps time to sow more seeds (though maybe not with all the seeds that “say” start sowing from March..).

Tomorrow also is the first anniversary of a friend’s death. She was an allotmenteer, participating in various allotment gardening fora imparting knowledge, advice and tips. I feel lucky to have met such a special, kind lady. I shall be thinking of her.


gooseberry leaf burst

The one gooseberry bush has decided to open its leaf buds. One of the currant bushes has also started to come into leaf.
Gooseberry leaf burst

I have not seen this feline before. It has ever-so-soft fur and was bouncing all over the garden. Silly thing, tried to eat the end of a gooseberry branch!

Yay, leeks


On Sunday, harvested the leeks, some albeit the size of spring onions, but all were very tasty.

Tomatoes have germinated, not all though. Will be doing some repeat sowings this week of the chillis that didn’t germinate, plus starting off more herbs and things. March is just round the corner; it is all very exciting.

Light therapy & recycling

I was reading yesterday’s Weekend section in the Daily Telegraph and came across a brief interview with Gordon Ramsey. One question asked was, “What, in human history, do you wish had never been invented?” His reply was, “Okra. That strange slimy enzyme it releases when you slice is something out of a horror movie….” I like horror movies!

Elsewhere in Saturday’s Telegraph was an article in the magazine about what happens to a mobile phone when it goes for recycling, and also briefly about the manufacture. Components that make up the mobile phone are made up from metals and other things, many of which in their raw state are toxic… The phone casing protects us from those nasty things, though the casing is mainly plastics but contains small amounts of phthalates (high levels perhaps damage hormonal systems). Other metals used in phones are copper, magnesium, tin, gold, arsenic, chromium, beryllium, cobalt, lithium, silver, tantalum.. Coltan, which is a mineral containing tantalum and niobium (also known as columbium), is important in the manufacture of mobile phones. The article says that a few years ago, there were reports of coltan being mined in inhumane conditions (area was in a civil war) & child labour?. With the boom in electronics requiring tantalum (such as gaming consoles and even more mobile phones…), the price of coltan rose and the rebel leaders used it to raise cash for arms. As for recycling, components may be sent to China and perhaps not in “safe” conditions… Some of the phones collected for recycling end up being dumped (“it’s cheaper”), though most get reused. The author found an agent sending phones to Africa and was able to follow the phone through to the new owner.  The article in the magazine is an edited extract from a book, Confessions of an Eco Sinner. Might add that book to my reading list.

Again on the recycling theme, I came across Stonehead’s blog via a messageboard. He did a trip to the recycling point only to find out that a lot of the things he had brought for recycling were going to go to landfill, including AA and AAA batteries. Makes you wonder about this recycling malarky – paper being shipped to China for recycling… Re-use is certainly a better option. Perhaps schools and clubs want yogurt pots, cardboard and the like for craft projects.. I need to make more labels from drinks cans. Newspaper – well, perhaps I’ll even get round to making those seed mats that I mentioned a few years ago in A4A!

Wind, smoke and fire

The weather turned, becoming wet and windy. We had put a cloche thing over one of the beds but omitted to tie it down. I was just getting ready to go down there when the doorbell rang. It was the fire service come to install two new smoke alarms free of charge in the house, one downstairs and one upstairs. Then, I had some fire safety advice – shut the doors at night, get rid of the polystyrene ceiling tiles, what do to if you smell gas…. He said that we should get smoke alarms for each bedroom, plus carbon monoxide detectors for rooms with the gas fires in. Anyway, by the time he had left, there was not enough time to go to the plot as I had to collect my son from school.

Hope the cloche is still there. Probably go down over the weekend.

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