While I have introduced and chronicled the human allotmenteers that make up our plot collective I have been very tardy in introducing the other important members of our team. So, without further ado I give you Ruby and Pickles.
( that is a lesser spotted husband sitting next to them!).
Both Ruby and Pickles live with Manda. Ruby is 8 ( I think…) and is a Sprollie which is a border collie / springer spaniel cross. She is not a nuts as you think a cross of those breeds would be. However, she does bring a level of border collie neurotic concentration to watching people dig that is quite something to behold. She can watch Dave or Neil dig for hours on end in the hope that one of them will throw stones for her to chase. They won’t though because that has been banned. Failing that she will get stuck in herself and loves to help dig holes which is partly the reason that we ended up with our first pond…
This is a great picture of her last year ( not such a great one of the plot though, wild and untamed I think would be the appropriate description).
I also like this one which is her hiding behind our fence!
Pickles is a Shih tzu and is only a year old. He is thoroughly adorable but frankly not the sharpest trowel in the allotment shed!! Unlike Ruby once he has run round the plot like a total nutter he then falls fast asleep. Unless there is food. Pickles can hear a picnic being unpacked from 100 yards!
He really is a very sweet ball of fluff but definitely has a way to go before he is up to Ruby’s digging standards.
There has, over the years, been a degree of coming and going with who is part of our allotment community. We have always worked on the principle that it doesn’t matter how much or how little time you can give to the allotment because we alll lead such very busy lives. However, sometimes life just gets too busy for any allotmenteering and so it is that J&J are no longer helping us to dig and weed. This isn’t to say though that we will never see them at the plot but when we do it will be purely social rather than expecting them to wrestle with the bristly ox-tongue and nettles.
Just like the seasons this feels just like another part of the ebb and flow of our allotment (mis) adventures.
It was pointed out to me that people reading this blog may like to know who ‘we’ are! A very reasonable request and I live to serve…
Ok, so there is me, I’m Kath and I am married to N. I teach philosophy and when I am not doing that I garden, knit and spend too much time on line!
Then there is N. He is married to me! N is very protective about his runner beans. Over the years we have all learnt not to interfere with the growing of beans! N is also a plumber and so is responsible for our rain water butts:
The kids decorated the shed…
Then there is M and D. I have known them both now for 17 years though they have been friends for even longer. M is an HLTA and also the most wonderful respite carer for my 10 year old son who is autistic. D is a carpenter and builds things for the plot, like our shed decking made from recycled pallets.
Then we have our newest ‘family’ members, J&J. Both of whom work for the railway and are clearly a little unhinged for wanting to throw their lot in with us!
Then there are the 9 children ranging from 18 to 6 years old, though the 18 year old does not do the allotment! Not all of them are mine I hasten to add, just four of them belong to me and N.
We run the allotment as a collective, everything is shared. If we need to buy something then the cost is divided 6 ways, as is the rent. When we harvest a crop people take according to their likes and needs. We don’t have any set rules, we have never had any need. Just unwritten ones like be excellent to each other and don’t touch N’s beans ( he shares them out when they are done)!