Archive for April, 2010

My moment of fame

I can’t quite bring myself to listen to it .   It is always so weird to hear yourself but here is me talking about Allotmore on the BBC Radio Surrey Breakfast show . We are about 38 mins in and by all accounts I am sounding very posh.  Nick has written a lovely blog post about us as well and is looking for ideas about what to plant.  I’m looking forward to him and his family getting started. Who knows perhaps they’ll turn out to be a bit hippy as well.  Wood Farm is so lovely its hard not to be i think 🙂


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Spring has sprung

And Allotmore is alive with activity.  There is plenty of digging and planting being done and the first shoots are starting to come through. My first onions have started to show themselves and the rhubarb is going great. In the greenhouse the green beans  are off! I love growing beans, they are so much fun to watch. Its amazing how one small bean can move so much mud to get itself out into the light. I’ll take some pictures tomorrow to explain my ramblings. The leeks and tomatoes are just starting to come out but no sign of the chillies yet.

Last week Chris and I went to an event at Waverly Council to talk to other people who are doing enviromently friendly projects.  It was great to chat to so many enthusiastic people and it made me feel very positive about the local area.

This weekend we went to Pete and Zoe’s lovely wedding. It is obviously meant to be – they had a village fete style do and the sun was shining all the way through even though its only april.  The crazy fools even had Chrises swingboat as one of the attractions (no one was hurt thankfully).  It was a really lovely day.

Today started with a chat with Nick from BBC Surrey’s breakfast show. He came over to Allotmore to have a look at what we are doing, what we are growing and to try to get pigs to oink on demand. Not an easy task! You may very well hear me on the radio some time soon – hopefully not saying anything too silly. I think Nick might be a convert to the world of growing your own which is great.

We have been very lucky as Harry Hall (of Hunter Hall), the local softfruit farmer has been very generous and given us enough raspberries, strawberries and blueberries to fill our fruit cage and a lesson on blueberry care. Project Fruit Cage is so on for next weekend now.

The piglets are doing really well – they are out and about and running around like fools, except when people want to see them, then they hide. They are even already eating Lizzies food – brave move little piglings!

This week we are preparing our stall for the Godalming Spring Fayre on saturday. We’ll have a plot to raffle in aid of the Battery Hen Welfare Trust and a couple of the hens will even be coming with us.

Really busy at the moment but in a really good way 🙂

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Here comes the sun

What an amazing weekend! I was full of good intentions to get loads of things done but it was just so sunny what else could be done but sit and enjoy the sunshine and watch the piglets as the venture out of the hut for the first time.

We did manage to get down to Secretts Farmers Market and give out some Allotmore bags and talk to some people about the project. It might have been the sunshine but everyone was really enthusiastic and some great people came up to have a look round. Fingers crossed they liked what they saw.

The first plants are in the ground and Allotmore is underway! The only bad news is that the lovely weather has triggered off all the weeds and brambles and my battle (which the cold weather had kept under control) is now in full effect. Luckily Terry has given me a nice little mantis to use in the battle so I will be victorious.

We have also found someone who is happy to supply us with all the manure we would need as long as we pick up which is great and a good test of my shovelling skills.

Gardening guru John is now back from his world travels so now we have onsite advice and expertise for those who want it. We have also been given a large fruit cage by a very generous Kathy, now all we need to do is work out how it all goes together. The perfect sunny day project (providing beers and icecream are on hand).

Wood Farm is a great place to be at the moment!

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Finally – we have piglets

After all the waiting Lizzie took the chance of us popping out for lunch for about an hour to have her piglets in peace. She was wandering about before we left and when we came back she already had 11 piglets! Sadly one didn’t make it through the first night but so far so good for the others. She is being a very good and gentle mum.

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Lets grow!

We have been out in the wind and rain for the last week making sure everything was ready for the open day yesterday. I think I have called in favours from pretty much everyone now and if I try to thank them all I will forget someone but huge thanks have to go to Dan, Jax, Sarah, Edd and Emma who have joined me in the rain and all have achey backs and blisters now too, to Lou for loitering in the rain with me handing out leaflets in town and asking people to put up posters (we discovered we didn’t like that part of things very much)  and to Debs for the fabulous cakes – give up the day job Debs you are totally wasted!

We made it in the nick of time and Allotmore is now open for growing.  I ws unsure what to expect from the open day but it was great. Lots of people turned up to have a look round, the sun was shining, the pigs behaved and we had plenty of booze and food to go round.  I was particularly impressed by Ella the Spaniel who took part in the egg hunt but managed to bring the egg back to her owner and not eat it. She did spend the rest of the day hanging out hopefully by the BBQ though so I hope she got a sausage as a reward.

Very excitingly we have our first growers signed up and ready to go and next weekend will be spent getting them settled in and planting. I know it’s just the begining, and there is still loads to do but it is great we have come this far. Bring on the summer!

Still no piglets…. Lizzie looks like someone has inflated her, she is huge!

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