Happy New Year

It’s a symptom of getting older that time seems to pass faster. When you’re young a year seems such a long time whereas now it doesn’t seem that long ago we were celebrating the new century!

2011 Weather

The weather statistics for 2011 are interesting – in the sense of that Chinese curse “May you live in interesting times”.  Despite the incredibly hard winter and disappointing (to say the least) summer, 2011 was the second warmest year overall on record, just beaten by 2006. This is because we had that lovely spring (the warmest April on record) and weirdly warm autumn and (so far) winter. In fact the highest temperature recorded in November was 19.2 degrees and that was Tregarth in Gwynedd, just 15 miles or so from us.

In the midlands and east it was drought time but in Scotland it was the wettest year. Here on the west coast of north Wales it seemed to do nothing but rain. My fitting rainwater storage barrels to the guttering seemed a bit pointless.

As gardeners we’re used to the vagaries of the weather but it seems to be getting worse.  I think that if it carries on this way we’ll see rice growing in the west and crops of prickly pear cacti coming from the east!


Beyond the weather, the economic climate seems to be in chaos as well. It seems we’re set for the worst recession ever. What with high streets having more boarded up shops than open and those in a job worrying about whether they’ll still be in a job next week, it’s the toughest I’ve ever known.

Defend Your Plot!

Sadly this puts councils under more pressure to get rid of those ‘unprofitable’ allotments at a time when they’re most needed. I know in recent years allotmenting and grow your own has become fashionable. A hobby for the well off. But, and it’s a big but, growing your own enables those suffering hard times to enjoy a hobby that actually makes a profit. It puts decent food on the table for next to no cost.

Plans for 2012

I think the next five years will see more and more people going up the self-sufficiency road, if only because they driven there by the economy. So my plans for 2012 are two fold.

Having got ourselves a warm(ish), dry house and the basics falling into place, we’re back to growing our own with a vengeance and self-sufficiency.

For the web site, I’m planning some major changes to make it a really useful resource for everyone. Not only adding a lot of extra pages but making it easier to find those pages.

Here’s hoping it all comes together!

Posted in Allotment Garden Diary
2 comments on “Happy New Year
  1. Su says:

    Happy New Year John. Looking forward to the changes

  2. Tom says:

    Hi John just read your diary 1st Jan
    never has a true word been spoken about the hard times where all going to face.Hopefully the allotments are here to stay but who knows .Happy New Year to You & Your Family

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