Girls just gotta have fun

It was a glorious sunny morning over at the allotments – very pleasant for the middle of winter. I joined other volunteers for the usual Wednesday morning working bee in the community garden.

The men were doing a lot of heavy work over in the food forest, wielding the chain saw, lopping trees, feeding branches through the mulcher and generally having a good time.

That left us ‘Land Girls’ to make our own fun and rolling the compost bins always ends in laughter. But it does take a lot of grunt, especially if it’s been raining as the compost inside the bins gets heavy.  But just to show that we are up to the challenge I took this photo. All happy smiling faces but they hadn’t started to push yet!

Roll out the barrel

Roll out the barrel

These bins give us wonderful compost in only eight weeks. Heather, the lady in the middle of the photograph above, takes on the responsibility of organising the filling of the bins with layers of green matter, carbon (paper), manure and rock dust.

To give you a better idea of the size of these bins here is a photo of Sue posing with one.  (I have posted about them before but that was ages ago.) We usually have five or six on the go and they all get their weekly roll.

Sue with the compost roller

Sue with the compost roller

After the rolling of the bins we moved into the community garden to harvest.  The peas are doing really well. They had grown so high that the top had flopped over. But if the framework was any higher we would have needed a box to stand on to pick them. As it was, it was a bit of a stretch. They were so sweet that not all the peas made it to the bucket.

 

IMG_3019

Jane, Heather and Josette, the pea pickers

This is Jane. She turned up to take photographs for a promotion her company is having (you can see her camera slung over her shoulder). She said she didn’t know anything about gardening – you don’t get off that lightly. After picking some peas with us she harvested some of the young radishes.

Jane picked some radishes

Jane with the radishes

I couldn’t resist including a couple of photographs of our youngest gardener. His mother has been bringing him since before he was born and the place wouldn’t be the same without him.

Looking after the pond

Inspecting the pond

The pond and water feature needed his attention.

Checking the fountain

Checking the water feature

Happy gardening.

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12 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Maria
    Jul 17, 2013 @ 21:53:16

    A wonderful post, Jean! Seeing the joy on everyone’s faces in the photos was delightful! So it’s not just ‘kids’ who eat peas straight from the plant eh? They taste wonderful don’t they, whatever our age! Lol

    Reply

    • Allotment adventures with Jean
      Jul 17, 2013 @ 22:02:26

      Thank you Maria. It was a wonderful morning, the sun was shining, everything in the garden growing beautifully and the company of these lovely women. We caught up with the men at morning tea, we don’t usually segregate, it was just the way it worked out this morning so I wanted to capture it with the camera. Picking peas is like picking strawberries. Irresistible, doesn’t matter what age.

      Reply

  2. cathyandchucky
    Jul 18, 2013 @ 10:42:08

    Wonderful blog Jean. Love this allotment idea and the community that springs up from it. I would be like the little chappie checking out the water features. Can’t keep me away from a water feature. Gotta check out the frogs, tadpoles, oarsman beetles etc. 😀

    Reply

    • Allotment adventures with Jean
      Jul 19, 2013 @ 06:55:22

      Hi Cathy. It’s the community spirit that takes me over to the allotments time and again, three days a week if I can make it. We have lots of frogspawn in the pond. Maybe that is what he was looking at. Either way he had a fascinating morning. Fortunately he had his ‘wellies’ on but I don’t suppose it stopped the rest of him getting a bit wet. But it was a warm day so no harm done. It’s lovely having the little fellow around – makes us old chooks feel good!

      Reply

  3. tanglycottage
    Jul 18, 2013 @ 17:37:06

    Very interesting composters.

    Reply

    • Allotment adventures with Jean
      Jul 19, 2013 @ 06:51:33

      I have never seen these composting bins anywhere else. They were all made years ago by John, one of our volunteers. He is one of those fellows who can turn his hand to just about anything. Not sure where he got the design from, but they work like magic. The green matter needs to be of the soft green kind (not twigs or real bulky stuff) but I don’t know anything else that can turn stuff into beautiful compost in eight weeks. We have other large round bins for the bigger stuff and we leave that rot down in the usual way. We waste nothing.

      Reply

  4. narf77
    Jul 20, 2013 @ 03:20:47

    It always makes me feel wonderful to see posts about your allotment Jean. It seems like a real community of like minded people all coming together to make it really work :). Call me an idealistic old hippy at heart but this sort of thing goes a LONG way to balancing out a lot of the negativity that swirls around every day. Cheers for starting my weekend off with a smile and I LOVE that little tacker in the garden. Starting them young could take a lesson from this kids mum 😉

    Reply

    • Allotment adventures with Jean
      Jul 21, 2013 @ 07:11:46

      Hi Fran. Pleased you enjoy reading about my ‘lottie’. There is a real community spirit there. It’s great when toddlers come along. They love it. AND they soon learn where the strawberries, little cherry tomatoes and all the other good stuff is growing!

      Reply

      • narf77
        Jul 22, 2013 @ 02:52:58

        It also teaches them where food really comes from and what people have to actually do to produce the food that they eat. It’s a most valuable lesson that more and more toddlers and children are learning every day thanks to allotments and a growing awareness of how important it is to have a little patch of earth to cultivate and grow your own 🙂

      • Allotment adventures with Jean
        Jul 22, 2013 @ 08:26:27

        Fran, I think kids like to have a little patch of garden all of their own as they grow up.

      • narf77
        Jul 22, 2013 @ 15:57:25

        I know I did…pity I never really grew up isn’t it? 😉

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