January at Plot 4

After a month ending in the excesses of Christmas it will be a relief to get back to the plot a little more during January. It’s a month of new starts and beginnings and as such I’ll be spending some of the days when the winter weather prevents a visit to the plot planning the growing year ahead. As yet I have no real plans, no must have new crops; but I’m sure after a few minutes perusing the seed catalogues that will change. By the end of the month I hope to have ordered and started chitting my seed potatoes, finalised the seed purchases for the new year, and I might have even planted a few peas in the relative warmth of the greenhouse.

There are still vegetables to harvest, with the prospect of frosts meaning that our parsnips will have developed their cold induced sweetness. Chard, Cavalo Nero and Broccoli are still thriving and will no doubt make their way into the a few soups, or onto the plate with a winter stew. The Jerusalem artichokes are also waiting patiently in the ground and will come into their own as the cold sets in, providing an alternative to the ubiquitous potato.

The start of a new year offers the opportunity for a fresh look at things, as well as the chance to look back at what has worked in the year that’s just finished. For me this not only means at the allotment, but also across my life. So when I’m planning my seeds and where to put them I’ll be also thinking about how my life will develop in the months ahead. What do I want to do this year? What do I see myself doing this time next year? How can I ensure I have time for mindfulness? I’m not sure of the answers to these questions, but am determined to find some of the answers over the next few months and continue to develop my recipe for a changed life.
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