One of my favourite harvests isn’t actually from my allotment’s plot at all. It’s from the the hedges that surround the site, from the garden and from chatting up the people who sell me my Christmas tree (lovely folks at Kidbrooke Homebase – a jolly, friendly bunch to whom I return again and again for customer service beyond the call of shed-shopping.)
The allotment looks really rather forlorn in December. I’ve got some kale, purple sprouting broccoli and Brussels on the go and the garlic’s grumpily accepting it’s in the ground so it might as well grow a bit, but frankly, it’s a bit on the bleak side.
When you start to look further though, you realise not everything’s dead. The holly tree (which my ‘lotty neighbour hacked back this year making it a bit of a stretch to harvest) is covered in red berries. The ivy in my garden, which I’ve deliberately not pruned so I can get long fronds, is green and lush. I’ll be getting a big bunch of mistletoe from my dad’s place to finish it off. And nothing from the Christmas tree goes to waste – all the lower branches and weird extra layers a Nordmann Spruce seems to produce – goes to decorate the house.
My lovely Allotment pal Paul is a dab hand at making wreaths and he created this one – I love the simplicity of it. I would have over-egged the Christmas pudding and crammed too much onto it.
The various decor is draped and arranged around the house, including the mantelpieces and the widow ledges (try to ignore the festive wheelie bins and seasonal York stone leftovers…)