Friday, 25 April 2008
It was tough on the allotment today. First there was an argument concerning onions. During the week I'd noticed we had very large gaps between our onion rows so I suggested we plant some lettuce and radish seeds in them. Our leader totally pooh poohed this and said we were going to start proceedings by planting more onions. I flipped. No, I shouted, we are not planting more onions. We have enough onions. I'm sick to death of onions. Glaring ensued. So to cool things off I said, why don't we get some more potatoes done? You know how much you like those...And so we continued for a while on a newly dug over piece of plot, he at one end and I at the other. Silently digging ditches with our spades. I did a row, he did a row. I started a second row and then did my watering rounds of all the stuff I now have under the glass of the hotbed and the coldframe while another (much less argumentative) volunteer finished the ditch. I was just bringing over a wheelbarrow of horse manure to put in the ditch (as we all know, when planting potatoes, we dig the ditch, put in the manure, and then nestle the potatoes upright in it) when I noticed our leader was putting his potatoes in without manure. So I said, hey, wait I'll put the manure in. Our leader then straightened himself and said, Don't tell me how to plant potatoes! The manure goes in afterwards...To help things along my friend came up at that point and said, I put the manure in first, but then I put the potatoes really deeply into it, so it's all round them. So it makes no difference, our leader shouted, NO DIFFERENCE AT ALL! To placate him, I said I was sure it wouldn't make any difference...anyway we would soon find out if it did as we had made the perfect experimental trial (possibly the first of its kind in the world): two rows of pre-planting manuring versus two rows of post-planting manuring. Afterwards, over coffee, our leader admitted that I had been right about one thing: we do have enough onions. But I am still banned from planting lettuces between the rows. I'm now trying to persuade my friend to take up her bloody leeks from the far side of the allotment so I can plant some more salad there. Silly woman didn't even know you could freeze leeks. Whatever next?