Down at the plot

Find out what’s happening on some of the plots at Church Vale. Some of our plot-holders will be keeping us updated with progress. Click on one of their names, or just browse through all the news…

Caitlin’s First Potato Harvest

Over the course of 4 months, while all my teenage friends were deciding what their latest status update on Facebook was going to be, I was deciding which potatoes to plant in the raised bed my Dad had made on our allotment plot, 13B. I had a big dilemma; should I go for the Classic Maris Piper, a route well trodden before, or something more unusual like a Pink Fur Apple? After umming and arring, I decided on 4 varieties; Vanessa’s 1st Early’s in my first row, CharlottesĀ  2nd Early’s in my 2nd and Maxine’s and Pink Fur Apples, main crop, taking up my last two rows. I needed to plant my potatoes ASAP, but as we had a new plot, I needed to dig the earth over and take all of the weeds out in order to plant my potatoes. So, my Mam and I (but mainly me!) dug over the earth until the soil was very fine. I then made four trenches, then lovingly lowered in my potatoes, covered them with earth and waited for the first sprout to appear.

Planting Out

Planting Out


There were many ‘is it a weed or is it a plant?!’ Questions, but after 4 weeks I concluded that my first sprout had come up! Having previously grown potatoes with my Grandad, I knew that this sign was good! But it didn’t make me any less excited’

The first shoots



Is it a weed?

From now on I played the waiting game, paying regular visits to our allotment to check on my spuds. When the plants grew bigger I had to earth them up so they didn’t come into contact with the light. The plants were tall and green and I was very excited on the day of digging my Vanessa’s up.

Coming along nicely

I have to say they were splendid, very yummy indeed. Since then, my spuds have avoided a mole, and blight, but are still coming up brilliantly. I was a bit bemused by the shapes and sizes of my Pink Fir Apple’s, but they made lovely chips!! One Sunday I dug up the last of my plants andĀ  laid my potatoes out to dry. I have to say, they were a brilliant success, and a great start to my crop harvest on Church Vale, and I felt a huge sense of pride, when we all had Sunday dinner with my spuds. I did it all by myself and can’t wait to start choosing again this Easter!



Digging up time

Are you sure this is a spud Dad?

Are you sure this is a spud Dad?





Start of the new season for plot 6

I’m sitting in Malta getting very excited about getting back to Pittington and our plot.

Since we took over plot 6 in April, we’ve managed to transform the allotment from a large patch of earth to a grid of paths and so far about 20 beds – all full of veggies and weeds! It’s been hard work, and we’ve needed the help of friends and family, but it’s been absolutely wonderful to see it take shape and actually produce some food for us.

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The next challenge is to clear the back “wilderness area” and get it ready for fruit and another couple of beds for next year’s potatoes.