We welcomed David Sparkes back again to do the judging.
“As always, it was a difficult task to select only one person to be the ‘Plot Holder of the Year’. Visiting the Stockingstone allotments again, after a year’s absence, I can see that the drought has affected some areas of the site. This year has been difficult for all of us with the severe drought conditions.”
We like to have a different theme for the judging every year. People enjoy their plots in different ways. For some it is flowers, soft fruits or various experiments with new seed varieties that give the most pleasure and satisfaction. For others it is the traditional staples of potatoes, onions and brassicas that are the main focus. This year we have focused on ‘edibility’ when judging the plots. Food prices have been going up and being able to harvest crops for the table for as long a growing season as possible is getting more important.
We used a 5 point scoring system and four categories. Maximum score 20 points.
- T ‘Tidiness and use of space’ 5 points
- V ‘Variety’ 5 points
- E ‘Edibility’ 5 points
- G ‘Growing season’ 5 points
The winner, runners-up and three special commendations.
|Plot No.||Plot holder||Score||Place|
|9||Nigel||19 points T4 V5 E5 G5||FIRST|
|7||Mr Ali||18 points T5 V4 E5 G4||SECOND|
|38||Vince||17.5 points T5 V3.5 E5 G4||THIRD|
|26B||Joy & Peter||17 points T5 V3 E5 G4||Special commendation|
|18B||Irfan||17 points T5 V4 E4 G4||Special commendation|
|36B||Lucian||13 points T4 V2 E4 G3||Special commendation|
|31D||Karolina||13 points T4 V4 E3 G2||Special commendation|
Plot 9 (Nigel) 19 points FIRST
This is a large plot with a good seasonal spread of produce. Something for the table all year round, both for the main course and the pudding. There is good pest control, with very sturdy netting covering the more vulnerable crops. The soil looks well looked after and preparation is under way for autumn planting in some of the beds. Looking at the beds you can see that seasonal planning and rotation is in the plot holder’s mind when deciding what to plant where. This should stretch the growing and eating season by several months.
Plot 7 (Mr Ali) 18 points SECOND A large plot where every inch of space is used for growing food. Very neat and orderly with impressive rows of support structures keeping the crops well spaced and upright.
Plot 38 (Vince) 17.5 points THIRD Vince is an ‘old-timer’ who has been cultivating his plot for many years. His crops always look healthy and happy, especially his sweetcorn which is always of an impressive height.
Plot 26B (Joy & Peter) 17 points SPECIAL COMMENDATION Joy and Peter manage their plot with great skill and dedication. The vegetables they produce every year always look great.
Plot 18B (Irfan) 17 points SPECIAL COMMENDATION Irfan is a relative newcomer to the site and he has worked wonders on his plot over a short period of time. He has been battling the ravages of some very hungry muntjacs and he is winning.
Plot 36B (Lucian) 13 points SPECIAL COMMENDATION Lucian is also a newcomer who has been putting in a lot of effort into turning an overgrown patch into a productive plot. The plot is on a slope and he has been working on terracing it into a neat ‘staircase’ of growing beds.
Plot 31D (Karolina) 13 points SPECIAL COMMENDATION A very happy looking plot. A shady oasis to sit down in for a rest after tramping round the site in the hot sun. Lots of different food crops growing in small beds dotted about the plot.