October 2014 Update

Discover the progress made on the allotments during October 2014.

Sandra Eder, Southlands Road Allotment and Gardens Association

Organic seeds for planting in the allotment
Southlands Road Allotment and Gardens Association
People in the west country queuing for potatoes in 1917
West Country Studies Library

Choosing seeds

The nights are drawing in and the weather is changing, what better excuse than to sit down with a seed catalogue and let you imagination run away, and dream about all the fantastic crops you hope to grow next year.

I’ve been doing exactly that and ordered some Heritage seeds from Thomas Etty Esq., he writes:

“Mr Etty begs (most respectfully) to bring to the notice of the Nobility, Gentry, Clergy & Others, this, his specialist seed catalogue. In doing so he trusts that his determination to select from none but the best stocks will ensure for him the patronage which it is his anxious study to merit.”

Although not organic none of the Etty seeds are chemically pre-treated so what we get will be very similar to seeds ordered back in 1914 –1918.

I am waiting to take delivery of the Thomas Etty seeds but have received seeds from Chase Garden organic seeds; the picture shows some of the varieties we will be growing.

Obtaining seeds during the First World War

Back in 1914—1918 not all allotment holders bought from seed catalogues. In some boroughs seeds were purchased in bulk and distributed to plot holders or there were seed merchants where you could buy an ounce or less of seed.


Seed potatoes were also purchased in bulk, it was recommended that half of an allotment should be planted with potatoes. Of that, half to two thirds would have been main and second crop, with one third given over to earlies. For this reason we have decided to ‘show case’ vegetables that would have been grown at that time, otherwise most of the plot will be potatoes.

Our order has been sent off for heritage potatoes which include Golden Wonder, King Edwards, British Queen and Pink Fir Apple. These will be delivered early in 2015.

Did You Know?

We all at some time have been in a queue, here is a notice from Bromley Times 1917:


Passengers can only enter a bus one at a time. By forming into queues at the recognised stopping points it will be possible to enter in comfort.


This page was added by Ian Grant on 05/11/2014.

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