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Feeling overwhelmed - please help


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  • #16
    Hello Nanny Chicken and welcome.

    I think part of the problem might be that it's human nature to focus on what we didn't do rather than what we did. Perhaps next time you go down don't think "I didn't finish weeding" or "I didn't get the grass cut" and instead, focus on "I got all those over winter onions in and the shed looks very tidy."

    I personally over-estimate how much I can do in the time I have and end up disappointed but when I realise that I did actually get quite a bit done, even if it wasn't everything I thought I would, then I feel better.
    Proud renter of 4.6 acres of field in Norfolk. Living the dream.

    Please check out our story in the March 2014 issue of GYO magazine.

    Follow us on Twitter @FourAcreFarming


    • #17
      It's my weekend working this weekend so this is just a very quick reply to say thank you again for all your supportive comments and advice. I really am taking it all in. Thank you to the Nichols for your comment - ironically it's the type of advice I readily give others - but it certainly doesn't hurt to hear it yourself!

      I neglected to say in my first post (oh Nanny Chicken you missed something out - really??) that our allotment association have taken over the management from the local council and they carry out monthly inspections and send letters threatening to take your plot away if it is not up to their standards so as well as pressure nearer to home to have a re-think I am also under constant dread of the brown envelope which will prove the point that I am not managing it.

      Not that this cuts much ice but I think also because of the individual beds approach that I have adopted any unruly vegetation in my plot stands out like a sore thumb. I have some days off coming up so I am hoping to make some progress ahead of the postman. Wish me luck - I'll keep you posted. Look for a thread with a more positive title!!

      Thanks again folks NC


      • #18
        Talk to the allotment association, I know some people have a terrible time with their groups but there must be some nice ones out there. Also, do get a clear statement of the rules if you haven't got one and be clear what they are saying. The people who inspect may have an ideal but that may be more than the minimum.
        "A life lived in fear is a life half lived."

        PS. I just don't have enough time to say hello to everyone as they join so please take this as a delighted to see you here!


        • #19
          Hi from another Chicken
          You've had lots of good advice about how to make your plot easier to maintain so I'm going to give you a completely different angle on this.
          Do you have a garden at home? If so, can you adapt it so that you grow more veggies/fruit in it. Lots of us on here don't have plots but seem to do very well without.
          I used to have a 10 perch plot and a garden and an OH who wasn't interested in gardening at all. I was also working full time. Whilst I loved having the allotment, it was a 15 minute drive away and I found it difficult to make time to go there often enough to keep on top of it. I was just chasing my tail all the time.
          Something had to go and, reluctantly, I gave up my plot. I'm embarrassed to say it, but it was such a relief when I handed in the keys. My garden is my plot now and life is so much enjoyable.

          I want to give you a "Get out of Jail Free" card. There is no shame or stigma attached to giving up a plot. When you don't look forward to going there, when it has become a burden, don't beat yourself up. Life is too short to struggle - you should enjoy every minute of it.


          • #20
            Hi-ya! And a very warm welcome to the Madhouse!

            I'd come give you a hand if you were nearer. Have you thought about taking on a sharer/helper? Just thought I'd bung that one in, as you already have loooooooooads to think about!
            Last edited by Glutton4...; 16-08-2014, 11:37 AM.
            All the best - Glutton 4 Punishment
            Freelance shrub butcher and weed removal operative.


            • #21
              Hi Nanny, welcome to the vine.

              I am not a plot holder, but can see how frustrated you are with the whole situation.

              You mentioned that you have some green manures... How practical would it be to weed an area then sow your green manures in those areas? I can see a couple of potential benefits for you in this approach.

              1) it sounds like you need to reduce your work load to a more manageable level, so this would help reduce the area you need to manage.

              2) you would gain a psychological boost from these areas producing something you are planning and cultivating yourself,rather than it being weeds.

              3)you would be producing a fertiliser for next year, ie being productive.
              Quanti canicula ille in fenestra ?


              • #22
                Dear All

                Many, many thanks for your replies. I read each one and very carefully considered the situation. There is some great advice out there and some great support. Perhaps I should have asked for help sooner.

                The post that really resonated with me was that from veggiechicken who really hit the nail on the head. I do have a decent sized garden at home. I have a bit of a container fetish (I have loads) and I have always promised myself a kitchen garden/potager type affair once the allotment was sorted.

                So that is the direction I have decided my veggie growing will now head in. I have given up the allotment in the last few days and feel better already. We gifted those allotmenteers still working hard around us with our treasures that we purchased but won't need at home such as the "non back ache" spade so that felt good.

                Thanks again and see you on the other forums. I'm off to create a potager


                • #23
                  Originally posted by Nanny Chicken View Post
                  it's like starting from scratch with the weeding. We'll have a massive weeding purge, wear ourselves out and next time we go it looks as if we have never been.

                  Mulch, mulch, mulch.

                  Mulch suppresses weeds. Weeds can be used as mulch: win win.

                  If you leave soil bare, it will very quickly become covered with weeds ~ so don't have any bare soil, ever. Cover it with a mulch of wet newspapers or cardboard topped with something to hold it down (planks, bricks, bottles of water, netting, grass clippings, manure, chopped up weeds etc etc)

                  Allow your weeds to get quite big before you pull them. This way, they shade out other weeds, so you end up with fewer (but bigger) weeds overall.
                  Weeds are only "dangerous" when they're seeding, so never let them flower ~ this is when you pull them up, and drop them on the soil as mulch. The mulch stops other weeds from germinating (because the seeds need sunlight to germinate).

                  For the same reason, don't dig, because every time you turn the soil you expose more weed seeds to the light.

                  For more info/photos, click on my FB link below
                  All gardeners know better than other gardeners." -- Chinese Proverb.


                  • #24
                    If it's too stressful though there's no shame in saying you don't want an allotment at the moment. Doesn't mean you couldn't stay on the site's waiting list and then get another plot in the future.

                    They are hard work, time consuming, and soil-destroying when you don't have the energy/time you need to get on and do stuff.

                    Ah! I only read the first two pages before pitching in with my two-pee's worth.
                    Last edited by alldigging; 22-08-2014, 01:11 PM.


                    • #25
                      Well done Nanny Chicken - enjoy your freedom and planning your potager.
                      Don't forget to show us some photos of how it pregresses - we're a nosey lot


                      • #26
                        N/chicken I grow in my back garden I don't have a lot of space but its surprising how much you can get out of a small area. So good luck and enjoy gardening again

                        I've got this good potager link in my bookmarks its really interesting so i hope you get some ideas :-

                        Camellia Rose: Stages of a potager
                        Location....East Midlands.


                        • #27
                          You will get much pleasure from your back garden veggie plot. Whilst we are still harvesting, we are making plans for next year already. Who's in or who's out, who's moving where. It has really captured us in our retirement. Enjoy
                          Nannys make memories


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