Friday, 27 March 2009

D'you wanna see how much I've done so far?

As it was after the big chop...

As it is now, March 2009

Okay, so it's still messy but it is shaping up now. I have hit the serious bramble infested end of the plot. Progress has slowed because of the sheer density and depth of the roots and also the rainy weather. I had a huge pile of weeds that had been drying nicely on a pallet which I joyfully incinerated. It was very cathartic burning all the weeds. 
Contrary to what some think I have dug every square foot of the plot so far - not just where the beds are placed. 

If you need tips about clearing and burning weeds:-
  • I recommend putting the weeds on a pallet rather than into a bag or bin or straight on the ground. This way the air circulates and they dry, as they dry the soil falls off - of course I covered them with plastic when it was going to rain! - well most times!  The first load of weeds I dug up I put in one of those spring-up bins - they are still there, sodden with soil and no good for burning. I shall tip them out onto the pallet the next sunny day I go down and get them dry and ready to burn. 
  • Cover weed piles up when it's really windy or you may upset your neighbours by scattering weeds over their plots.
  • Bonfires on allotments have to be well considered. It's common sense really. I am close to a playground where I take my little under-gardener, so I won't burn when the wind blows in that direction or towards any houses, especially those with open windows!
  • May to September are mostly no no months for fires. 
  • Don't forget November 5th is the best of all days for a blaze!
  • A still day is perfect for burning - but also pretty hard to come by. So I choose a cold and/or spitting day when I wouldn't really want to be outside. 
  • Weekdays are better than weekends as less people are at home enjoying their own gardens. 
  • My top tip is get the fire hot hot hot. It smokes much less the hotter it is. Get it started with timber kindling of some sort is good. 
  • Fed it little by little and don't be tempted to stir or poke it as you'll could collapse in necessary air pockets. 
  • Obviously green, wet and soil covered weeds smoke the most so take note of the first tip.
  • Use the ash and feed your beds potash, valuable potassium (K) fertiliser. The perfect cycle of weeds to fertiliser. Bad becomes Good.

1 comment:

Carrie said...

Holy crap - what a transformation! A lot of hard work but my goodness it was worth it. Very well done, I'm suitably impressed. Now you'll just go from strength to strength. Hope other plot holders are jealous, hehe