Gardening, Plot 44

Welcome to Plot 44

Last Friday, I ventured to view the beautiful cherry blossom trees on a patch of land. Not far from home, just a short cycle ride. Today’s visit was going to be different from my previous ones, and after two years of observing, and uttering “how cool an idea is this” and acknowledging that the area had a good vibe, we became renters of Plot 44. I had finally signed us up to be a part of a community garden organisation where we get to have a patch of dirt to grow vegetables. It was fate to be there that day, as I was allocated the last available plot. After counting up my ever-increasing pots on the balcony, it is a relief to have more room to indulge my passion for growing plants.

Otumoetai Community Gardens

This community- managed and operated space within council owned reserve land is a kiwi version of Allotment Gardens. There is plenty of space to wander amongst the fruit and ornamental trees and our individual and shared plots. A positive distraction and fun to spend time outside, chatting about all things regarding gardens, like planting, caring for the soil and plants, and eventually enjoying the grand finale of harvesting. We have always had a vegetable garden, some larger than others and this experience we get to be amongst other kind minded gardeners, share seedlings, seeds and just be involved together in a community-based organisation. Though mainly it will be me who will be doing the manual work, with the Squire relaxing and sharing his gardening wisdom with me, underneath the shade of those cherry trees.

Until the next instalment.

Happy gardening to you all.

37 thoughts on “Welcome to Plot 44”

  1. My summer life revolves around my vegetable garden. I am so so at flowers but veggies and I go WAY back. I grew up on a farm in the 60`s in Western Canada and we were pretty much self reliant for veggies — we didn`t eat anything Γ¨xotic` back then but we had tons of what we did eat. I have always managed to garden throughout my entire professional career and am not enjoying the semi retired time so I can play a bit more. This past spring, for the first time every, I started all my own plants from seeds: tomatoes, cabbage, kohlrabi, brussel sprouts, pumpkins and squash so that was a real win in my column. I am sure you will enjoy having dirt under your nails again and growing what you eat. I too love all those community gardens over in Europe — it seems like it is almost a destination for the members and they have these colourful little huts. Community gardens are finally catching on here where I live in Canada.

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  2. Love the cherry blossom. Great news about the plot, it will keep you busy, but I know you are seasoned gardeners. I look forward to seeing what you grow and it’s a nice way to meet like-minded people.

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    1. Thanks Jude, yes looking forward to planting in a few days once these horrendous winds stop. Plus, getting involved in some working bees to keep the surrounding areas looking good.

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    1. Thanks Nilla. Yes, to fruit trees, I am in envy of all your cheap mangoes in Queensland! We have an olive and lemon growing on our balcony and there are quite a few fruit trees at the community garden. Will be a challenge to grow veggies during your summer? What ones would you grow?

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      1. I don’t have a mango yet. πŸ˜‰
        Veggies are in a shaded light area so they’re 2 types of sugar snap peas and beetroots.
        I have 2 pots with blueberries, which need full sun I’m told, but they’re shaded from the harsh afternoon sun.
        My herb area has flourished over the last couple of months as it’s shaded from the harsh sun, but gets the morning sun.
        Then, bought 2 citrus trees, which will give me 5 types of fruit as these trees are grafted and fruit within 12 months of planting
        So, we’ll see what survives our harsh summer. Planted other fruit trees also: paw paw, blackberry, mulberry/bush, avocado (grown from the seed) and can’t remember what else!

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        1. You’re doing well Nilla and look forward to seeing how they go. We had a hedge of blueberries in our last garden as it was totally an edible garden. LOVE blueberries! Herbs are brilliant to grow and I’ll still have them on our balcony as well as the plot. Yes, our summer is harsh too. Will be interesting to see how this coming summer goes!

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          1. Thanks, now I know who to contact for gardening advice. πŸ˜‰
            Our 1st month of Spring is already too hot. Last week we had a few 30C days, so dread to think how hot the summers have become in Australia. When you’ve been away for 6 years, you certainly notice the changes.

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            1. That is warm for spring. Unpredictable weather at the moment and very windy! It’s the high humidity that I don’t enjoy, which is energy draining. Oh well, we all have undesirable seasons.

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  3. This is fantastic news, Suzanne! I know how you used to garden and always loved doing this during house sits when available. Being able to rent plot 44 was meant to be. I’d love to sit under those cherry blossoms right now and how nice it would be to harvest the fruits of your hard labor this summer! Enjoy!

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    1. Thanks Liesbet. We think it’s a fabulous opportunity to keep us busy and then reaping the rewards. Yes, I did enjoy gardening while housesitting and developing an orchard and vegetable gardens. All good fun.

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    1. At least you’re honest Anabel, and you aren’t the only one I know who doesn’t enjoy gardening. I enjoy flower gardens that others have created and no desire to create those again. Vegetable gardens are something completely different and I think more rewarding especially in our temperate climate.

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    1. I think it will be Jo and interesting to see how different community gardening will be. I like the idea that it encourages more people to start growing their own produce. Brilliant for us apartment dwellers πŸ™‚

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  4. I envy you going into Spring and I love the cherry trees. I used to have an allotment when my children were small but found it too much work when I was nursing. It will be fun meeting the other gardeners.

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    1. I loved viewing all the allotment gardens around the UK and Europe. Fascinating and really happy that they have taken off more here in New Zealand. This community garden has been going for a few years now with a variety of experienced and novice growers.

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