Monty Don gave a passionate rousing call for people from all walks of life to take up the allotment life on tonight’s Gardener’s World.
Its not just old Arthur Fowler types who have allotments nowadays.
Allotments have a long history in Britain and are part of our shared social history. Allotments were heavily promoted and used during World War 2. People were encouraged to take up allotments as part of the war effort, food was becoming scarcer and rations were introduced.
Allotmenteers have the opportunity to be part of a community, something perhaps many young (and also not so young) people in the UK would benefit from. Many allotment sites have a rich social life and take shared responsibility for decision making about the allotment sites.
Also there are many weird and wonderful veg competitions you can enter – largest carrot, longest leek, tastiest jam and all that. A slice of British life that is declining…
Allotmenteering can be fun and it is a hobby or way of life that does not have to involve huge amounts of cash. Hidden amongst our blogs are tips and demonstrations of this philosophy. For example why you must scavenge in skips and how to have a laugh when sweeping leaves.
Don’t forget benefits to mental, physical and ‘spiritual’ health.
Allotment sites are diminishing in number for various reasons including the bullying housing developers and the local authority’s need for cash, but also because WE NEED MORE ALLOTMENTEERS. Your country needs you so, what are you waiting for…..
This Habitat Action Plan for Allotments, gives a thorough discussion of why allotments are in decline, the benefits of allotments, the legislative context and an action plan for halting their decline. All argued from an organic and wildlife promoting stance. Have a read if you need more convincing or if you need more motivation (wink)…..
If not, watch tonight’s BBC Gardener’s World. It had us both jumping off the sofa, waving our fists in the air, proclaiming “Go on Monty – you tell ’em -everyone should have an allotment!”
A factsheet for the episode can be found on the BBC Gardeners World website.