Discussion in 'The Lounge' started by MJB, Mar 14, 2019.
Elf n safety!
I remember those days well. I still hate peeling neeps.
I am thinking of getting an allotment, albeit a small one. My main concern is whether I will have time to attend it as I work full time in a job that is by no means 9-5.
I suppose it depends on what I grow, but to give me an idea, how much time do you spend on your one?
If what you call neeps are what I call swedes then I agree with you about peeling 'em. They are an essential component of a multi root mash. My multi root mash bears little resemblance to the mashed swede that we got in school dinners. I don't know why I referred to them in plural. Only a fraction of one is needed per serving.
Neeps are turnips.
We have a full plot (90’ x 45’) and it is a lot of work. There are half-plots available. Waiting time to get one is 10 years+. Even though many are unworked there is a reluctance to throw people off. I can understand this as a period of serious illness at the wrong time of year will ruin any chance of cultivation.
Basically you have to prepare and plant in a fairly narrow window. Then water and water and water. Then weed a lot. Much depends on the starting state of the plot. Likelihood is you get an unattended plot riddled with couch grass. We also have mares tail on ours.
My back is bad and I can’t bend so I don’t help much. I do cut the grass on the communal areas - the access paths. This takes 90+ minutes a time - less if done twice a week and the grass is short. Much longer if the grass is long. If it needs strimming before a mower can go on it then it can take 3 visits to get around once, because I use a Stihl battery system and I’ve inly got 2 batteries (they were nearly £200 each).
Specifically the Swedish turnip, aka a swede.
Saved me the bother.
As Pete says, it's bloody hard work starting from scratch - I took on a half-plot that was entirely grass, and took two seasons to get it cleared, then took on another half two or three years later that had just had all the brambles burnt off - it was clear of vegetation, but took a lot of hard (but fun) work with a pick axe to get the roots out. Made even more satisfying because brambles burn green, so I could have big bonfires... I know, I'm a pyromaniac.
On the other hand, once you are clear, the activity tends to come in spurts - autumn/winter digging, spring planting, and in between it's surprising what you can get done in an hour's visit every couple of days. The hardest work is always at the start and nowadays I think a lot of associations are far happier with things like no-dig and raised beds than they were traditionally (though check first! Allotments are just the sought of thing that the middle-class rules fiend loves). I've always adopted the policy of watering everything until it's established, and then it has to take its chances - doesn't work for everything, cauliflowers hate it, and my spuds have been dismal this year - but that will depend on your soil, we are heavy loam on a floodplain so plenty f water not too far down. On lighter soil I don't think that would work.
You could always join Allotments4All: https://www.allotments4all.co.uk/
Interesting - turnips here are different to swedes - shaped like a beet, but larger and white. I always thought that was what Scots ate. My mother used to do mashed potato and swede - I didn't like it. I prefer swede eaten raw.
The little white ones are what the Scots fed to cattle, along with the ubiquitous kale now sold to us. Ha!
I love the little white ones though. Quartered and sweated in a bit of butter and splash of water till evaporated - delicious. I was never really fond of swedes although I'll eat a little of a mash of them.
I admit I always thought that "neeps" were in fact the small turnips and not swede.
Explained in photo form for those not of Scottish descent from a Scottish website I have just been looking at. Perhaps it was a Tesco in a Scotland/English border town!
Why did no one tell me we had been granted independance?
There's no Justice.
Because they wouldn't lie to you?
Can't be that. They do it all the time.
Correct. There is only the Law.
North Berwick Law?
Separate names with a comma.