Our allotmenteers have been busy growing more than just vegetables down on the plots. Since the Wisley Community Allotment Project started in spring, they may have produced a glut of courgettes, more beans than they know what to do with and enough potatoes to feed a small principality for a week, but there's been one crop they'd not noticed growing until now; confidence.
Our 12 allotmenteers started in April with no prior experience of growing their own. They were eager to learn and wanted to carry their newly-aquired knowledge out to their own communities. They've diligently attended monthly masterclasses held by our experts at RHS Garden Wisley, visited the plots each week to dig and plant earlier in the year, and lovingly weeded and watered during the summer months. At last the payoff has come.
The moment you harvest your first potato crop is particularly significant. The anticipation of sinking your fork into the earthy unknown, wondering what has been happening under the surface, and then unearthing treasure after treasure, brings a deep satisfaction that's well worth the wait.
Of course, potatoes are not the only treasures that come out of the soil; surrounding them is excitement, delight and confidence in being able to grow more lovely potatoes year after year.
And so the realisation dawns, as we see our allotmenteers go home laden with heavy bags and trugs full of their produce, that our beginner vegetable growers are indeed no longer beginners.
Come and join us
If you'd like to apply for a place on the 2016 Wisley Community Allotment Project please write to me, Amy Adams, Courses and Workshops Coordinator. Include:
A brief personal background (approx. 50 words)
Why you would like a beginners' vegetable plot at Wisley (approx. 50 words)
What you will do with your new knowledge (approx. 100 words)
Your postal address, email address and contact telephone number
Send entries to: Amy Adams, Courses and Workshops Coordinator, RHS Garden Wisley, Woking, Surrey, GU23 6QB Email: email@example.com
Deadline: Friday 13 November 2015
Shortlisted candidates will be notified by 31 December 2015 and invited to selection meetings in January 2016. All candidates will be notified by Friday 29 January 2016 and the first day will be Tuesday 23 February 2016.
Beginners guide to vegetable growing
Wisley Community Allotment Course