Plot 163b is a 5 pole local authority allotment in the South East of England, in a town called Hertford in the county of Hertfordshire. It sits near to a community garden which service users attend daily.
The plot is set between a nature reserve and residential housing esate, edged by an abundance of hedges and trees. The plot is quite exposed to the wind and sun with very little shelter from trees.
We are in the early stages of designing, having just done over a year at the plot. Some forest garden elements have already been included such as autumn olive, siberian currants, josta berries and siberian pea tree, black mint, soapwort, lunwort, black currants. The fence to the allotment is being used to not only keeps dogs and rabbits out, but also provides a structure to support cinnamon vine, logan and goji berry. We use no dig methods and incorporate the odd annual plant into the design.
A pond has been added to provide addtional habitat for the palmate and great crested newts, to provide thermass in the winter and for the enjoyment of watching the water life emerge. We use sheet mulching and green manure to help keep weeds at bay and provide fertility. We have also incorporated clover into the beds to provide nitrogen to feed other plants and to provide ground cover, keeping weeds at bay, the ground cool in the summer and warm in the winter. We also make comfrey, nettle and wormwood liquid fertiliser.
We are able to run 1:1 or group workshops of up to 4 people; we welcome families as part of this. We will be re-introducing our visitor days shortly.