With the return of warmer weather and longer days, May often presents us with some of the best growing conditions of the year. The fruit trees on my plot are all coming into bud and I hope for some decent fruiting this year, as last year’s late frosts and damp weather were a disaster for fruit tree pollination. The late frosts killed off much of the fruit blossom before pollination could take place and a severe lack of pollinating insects added to the problem. Gardeners blame the farmers for this phenomenon with their widespread use of chemicals. Suffice to say it was not a bountiful year fruitwise.
Click on http://www.edinburgh.gov.uk/downloads/file/10225/fedaga_a_plotholder_s_g... to find the FEDAGA Plotholder's Guide. Essential information in a handy format for all allotment holders in Edinburgh - and maybe of interest for those further afield.
In 2009 the Scottish Government published its first National Food and Drink Policy – Recipe for Success. This Policy made a clear commitment to strategically support allotments and community growing spaces. The SNP’s Manifesto in 2011 made a commitment to update the legislation relating to allotments, acknowledging the widely held view that the legislative framework was outdated.
We are delighted to announce that the Edinburgh in Bloom allotment competition is running again in 2013.
Run in partnership with the City of Edinburgh Council, this year's competition is focussing on allotment plots and is open to all plot holders in Edinburgh.
This year's 'Britain in Bloom' theme is 'Edible Britain' and the allotment plot competition ties in nicely with this and forms an important element of Edinburgh's 'Britain in Bloom' bid later in the year.
1st Prize- one year's free plot rental (up to the value of £100)
2nd Prize- 50% reduction on plot rental (up the the value of £50)
3rd Prize- £25 donated by FEDAGA
To enter, email email@example.com or call 0131 469 5257 with your:
- Contact details
- Plot number and site
- Any other information you would like judges to consider.
Download the entry criteria here: http://www.edinburgh.gov.uk/downloads/file/10081/allotment_competition_2...
The deadline for entries is Friday 7 June and the competition will be judged between 24 June and 31 July. The results will be announced shortly afterwards.
Early Spring generally marks the start of the gardening season ---- but not this year. Having suffered the coldest March for 30 years, things are a bit behind schedule. Last year at this time, we were basking in temperatures of 23.C ( as was Cyprus ).This year --- 3.C . with a liberal coating of snow over most of the country !
Daunted by weeds or heavy work on your allotment?
Would you like advice or help getting things up and running?
Fruit trees need pruning?
Pete Upton has a degree in agriculture and forestry from Oxford, years of experience running a therapeutic allotment, teaching grow-your-own courses and working with community growing projects in Perthshire, Fife, Edinburgh and the Lothians. Through Pete's Grow Your Own Food, he offers physical help with weeding, digging, rotovating, digging up large plants, bushes etc, building raised beds, laying foundations for sheds, water butts, compost systems etc., He is also happy to advise with managing fruit trees or on other questions you may want to ask an expert.
For a friendly, no-obligation chat, please contact him on 07932 651 725, or email through the contact page on the website.
Calum Carmichael of the Hanging Bat Beer Cafe has been in touch to say they have a large number of 50L recyclable 'eco-kegs' which they are looking to have removed. He says they are perfect for compost bins, water butts etc. They have had a number removed through freegle, but have many left. They are available to be picked up anytime.
The Hanging Bat Beer Cafe
133 Lothian Road
Background to the FEDAGA Review.
Up to the year 2000 there was a steady loss of allotment sites to other developments in Edinburgh. Spurred on by the loss of Hawkhill in 2001, FEDAGA's campaigning activities increased - lobbying for allotments to have improved protection through national and local planning policies. This led to some improvements for allotments in Edinburgh – and indeed the rest of Scotland:
Are you starting out on your new plot this spring? Congratulations on finally surfacing at the top of the Waiting List! However, now you've arrived you may feel that you require a little more than mere encouragement. Taking on a plot of land and trying to turn it into something productive will require a modicum of expertise. Help is at hand.
The City of Edinburgh Council and Bridgend Growing Communities are offering a hands-on course in allotment gardening for all plot-holders, both new and existing. The course aims to provide the knowledge and skills needed for a successful growing season, and will be delivered in 12 three-hour Sunday afternoon sessions, from 2 to 5pm.