I’ve started using a really cool app called VegPlotter, it has really helped me to plan out my new plot which can be very daunting when faced with a complete blank canvas of grass and weeds. The extra features mean I can easily plan my planting and cropping every month of the year once my plot structure is in place, helping to utilise growing space efficiently. This is a plan of how I’d like my plot to eventually look:
All I had to do was measure my plot and then put the measurement into the app, then drag beds to fit the scale and include things like paths, a shed and compost bins etc. My plot is a far cry from neat plan you see and I might change the layout in time, but for now I’m pretty pleased with it because I have something to work from and aim for. My plan includes a 4 year crop rotation system of 4 large beds, a good-size pumpkin patch, soft fruit bed, rhubarb patch, strawberry bed, a flower cutting patch, grass paths and pallet compost bins. The app is free to use, just register and away you go. https://vegplotter.com
I made a start on digging out the first bed on plot 5 yesterday (bed to the right of the shed). I had little break for lunch which was soup heated on the portable stove, it was lovely and warmed me through. It was quiet at the allotment for a Sunday, I felt the cold when I stopped digging so perhaps that’s why.
So this is how bed 1 looked yesterday, I put in another 3 hours of work on the plot today, peeling back the tarp bit by bit this bed is almost completely dug over now. Under the tarp the ground is very weedy so I’m removing them by hand with as much root as possible.
It feels good to have at least one bed in place and there’s life stirring on the plot in the form of garlic popping up, I helped my dad to plant it in October when the plot belonged to my parents. The variety is Red Duke, some of my homegrown garlic I gave to my parents to plant.
The rhubarb I inherited is waking up, I’m pretty sure it’s Timperley Early which is one of the earliest. Unfortunately it’s in the wrong place for my plot plans so it’ll have to be moved at some point.
I also inherited a currant bush, I’m not sure if it’s the red, white or black variety. The base was completely covered in plastic to act as a weed control but over time the grass claimed it. I removed it all and gave the base of the plant a good weeding and cleared as much grass away as I could for now, the centre is a bit congested and needs a light prune of damaged and old stems (usually darker wood) so I’ll take my secateurs with me next time I visit the plot.
Happy plot planning!