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Chipping Norton copywriters and allotment holders, Joy and David McCarthy, have recently set up a new blog to act as an online diary and information resource for both ‘allotmenteers’ and vegetable gardeners. (   The couple, who took

The copywriters' allotment - September 2007

The copywriters' allotment - September 2007

A transformed allotment

A transformed allotment

over their overgrown half-sized plot in September 2007, had only documented their progress with pictures prior to the blog.

The blog is updated each week and additional pages tell the story so far.  The McCarthys are hoping other allotment holders and gardeners will add comments and suggestions to help provide down-to-earth practical advice for new gardeners and growers.

Joy McCarthy explained, “We wanted to have a written record, as well as a photographic one, of our work on the allotment and what better way to do that than with a blog.  With the huge surge in interest in growing your own food, we hope our allotment blog will provide some inspiration to new allotment keepers and help put Chippy’s growers on the map.  The experienced allotment holders have a wealth of information which we’d like to tap into.  With the large number of younger people and families now queuing up for an allotment, a blog is a good way of ensuring vital information is passed on.  We’ve already started to include some tips and suggestions on dealing with problems such as slugs and caterpillars, but we make no secret of the fact we’re rookies when it comes to gardening on this scale.

Because we wanted a complete record, this year we’ve been weighing  everything we’ve harvested.  At the beginning of September, our 90’ x 25’ plot had produced an amazing 98 kg of fresh vegetables from just this season’s crops!  Just for fun, we’re also working out what it would have cost to buy, based on prices in the local shops.  Had we bought everything we’ve grown from Sainsbury’s or the Co-op, we would have spent nearly £300 so far.  With the potential for having home-grown produce 12 months of the year from our allotment, we expect that figure to be almost £1,000 in total.  Including the price of seeds and some investment in canes and net, we’ve spent around £120 this year.  It just goes to show it is worth growing your own and there’s no doubt home-grown veg tastes so much better.”

As well as the online diary and allotment tips, a recipe section is also being developed on the blog.  Anyone wishing to read the blog or make any comments or suggestions should visit:

For more information, please contact:

Joy McCarthy
Tel: 01608 642845

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