Stumps Gone And Dealing With The Worst Weather This Winter


After a couple of weeks wait, we finally got the stumps ground out on the plot. The whole process took about half an hour, saving we a week of back breaking work doing it manually.

It’s been really cold this week, but the worst is still to come so I’m taking precautions. I’ve put an extra layer of fleece over the veg in the cold frames and hoop tunnel, I’ve lit the greenhouse heater and I’ve covered most of the coldframe lids with old carpet. There’s nothing more that I can do.

I’m not even sure I need to do anything, but why take the risk, it’s 30 minutes of work and this should be the only time I need to do it this year. It’s also an interesting experiment, so I will be checking the temperature tomorrow with interest.

I also included a few temperature charts from this week. They show a marked difference between the effectiveness of the hoop tunnels and the coldframes. Hoop tunnels are much warmer, but also much less flexible and easy to manage.

If you are new to my allotment videos you might find a bit of context useful. We have three allotments in my family, mine (Steve), my wife’s (Debbie) and my middle daughter’s (Jennie). We also have a small kitchen garden at home. They are all managed in an integrated fashion, so don’t expect to see the usual mix of veg on each plot.

On Jennie’s plot, for example, we focus on potatoes, squash, alliums, and brassicas. This video provides an overview I do an update of the allotments, roughly one a week, you can find the tours here

Our approach to allotment life is to: grow as much as we possibly can, to be self-sufficient in veg all year round and in fruit in summer, to give away our huge surplus to friends and family, and to have as much fun as possible.

My wife and I spend about 4 hours a day, 4 days a week on the plots (on average) and we keep nudging that down as we eliminate non-productive work: like grass cutting, weeding and watering as much as practical. We are both newbie gardeners, only starting the allotments in 2016.

I’m a bit obsessive about the nutrient density of the veg that we grow and making the plots easy to work because it’s through this allotment lifestyle and food that I’ve overcome a debilitating auto-immune disease.

I’m always aware though that it might not last so I make sure that I don’t work too hard, eat the most organic fruit and veg I can and design the plots so that I can still work them if I flare up again.

Steve Richards

I'm retired from work as a business and IT strategist. now I'm travelling, hiking, cycling, swimming, reading, gardening, learning, writing this blog and generally enjoying good times with friends and family

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