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Michael Malkiewicz

Werrington, Peterborough

I just took over a half allotment in Werrington, Peterborough UK in December. This is my first attempt at no dig and I am looking forward to Spring with keen anticipation!

To date, I have been concentrating on preparing growing beds and have been slightly taken aback at the amount of compost that is needed but I am determined to get off to a good start and am making the investment.  Each of my 3.9m x 1.5m beds needs two builders bags of compost ( 1.5 tonnes approx).  The higher raised bed shown in the photograph also has around 1 tonne of topsoil under the compost.  I have another 2 bags of compost and one bag of woodchip for the paths to complete phase 1.

There are two more similar sized beds to construct but I shall be leaving these until later in the year as currently I have to wheelbarrow or carry all materials from the main gate to my allotment as there is a ban on vehicles using our grass access tracks until the Spring in order to conserve the ground.

I may also have an option to take over the other half of the plot shown in the background of the photograph and hopefully I shall know for sure fairly soon.  This is a retirement project to wean myself away form work, but I think I shall be working for a few months yet to try and recoup my start-up costs which have been fairly substantial given the amount of materials and tools that I have needed to buy. Having said that, I am looking at it as an investment as I hope to be self sufficient in compost before too long.

Coming form a sedentary work regime, it has felt at times like hard graft, but I notice it is starting to take me less time to recover from each delivery and the feeling of well being that I get whilst working my little piece of land and my own speed is simply wonderful.

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