Black Earth Abounds

With the promise of a new season just a few weeks away now a wee wander round our site today showed just how well on the winter digging was going on many of our plots.

It was nice to see so many of these plots were, ‘under new management’ this year and that things were off to a flying start for the year ahead.  It’s very encouraging to see such keen new starters join our association.  With apologies to those others who were not featured above.

Plot Security Advice

Pat Wilson has forwarded this advice from Police Scotland.


When looking at issues surrounding security always take into consideration the following three points:

APPROPRIATE – If the risk is small a simple solution will be appropriate, the higher the risk the more that will need to be implemented

REALISTIC – Make sure that whatever you suggest or implement tackles the problem or any foreseen problem

COST EFFECTIVE – The cost of whatever you suggest or implement should be in proportion to the risk and affordability


The fencing at the allotments is actually more of a physical deterrent rather than a definitive security barrier. In order to completely prevent anyone from climbing into each allotment, a great expense would have to be paid for substantial fencing. This is not realistic or cost effective. There are some measures that you can put in place to protect your fence.

A close wire mesh fence can be difficult to climb and offers good protection. Wooden panel fencing is generally a good barrier. If putting up a wooden panel fencing nail a strip of galvanised wire along the panels at a height of a third and two thirds up the fence. On top of that attached some mesh or heavy netting to further protect the fence. A further, more extreme, measure may be to connect every panel to the posts with coach bolts to make removal more difficult.

Barb wire* (or similar) along the top of fencing. The police advise against the use of such methods of intruder prevention due to the risk of legal action if someone is injured. Of course, it is not only intruders and trespassers who risk being injured by barbed wire or broken glass. Householders owe a much greater duty of care to anyone on the property with permission.

Anti-climb paint can be painted along the top of the fence. Anti-climb paint is also known as anti-vandal, anti-burglar, anti-intruder or anti scale paint. It is basically a thick glutinous paint with a similar appearance to smooth gloss paint however when applied it does not dry and remains slippery indefinitely so preventing an intruder from gaining a foothold. However not only does it not dry it is also extremely difficult to remove from clothing so acting as an excellent deterrent to possible intruders. This makes anti climb paint a very simple, economic and effective way of protecting your property from intruders. Please note that anti-climb paint should always be applied at least 2 metres above normal access height and its presence should be clearly indicated with warning signs, it is generally accepted that warning signs should be displayed at no more than 3-4 metre intervals and in a position where they are easy to read

Prikka Strip* – is a plastic strip of spiky platy spikes Property owners must satisfy themselves that no harm will be caused by these products and should display a warning notice advertising that an anti-intruder device has been fitted. http://

Shed – For information on shed and outbuildings security then please go tohttp:// garden-and-outbuildings. Always carefully consider what you keep in your shed? How valuable is it? How would I cope, how would I feel if it was stolen?


For further advice on home and personal security then visit http://

*Plotters are reminded that the Council prohibits the use barbed wire and similar devices on our site.

Parsnip Seed Offer

I hope all our plotters have been enjoying the festive season.  Here’s wishing you a very happy and successful growing season in 2017.

David Penman – plot 55 has saved a large quantity of his own parsnip seed and is happy to share it with other plotters. The variety is Gladiator. Anyone interested in some seed should contact David.


Randall MacLennan

Some sad news.

We’re sorry to announce the passing on 31 October of another long-serving plotter. Randall (Plot 94B) took on plot 94 in 1989 but for several years before that he helped his father-in law Norman McLeod who held the plot. Randall was kind-hearted, loved the outdoors and had a soft spot for all birds and animals many of whom he rescued when they were hurt or in distress.


He grew some fine produce in his time and when I had just started plotting I would occasionally come across a bag of quality carrots and the like hanging on the handle of our front door. Perhaps it made me a little jealous but it inspired me to emulate his example. He was 77 and latterly suffered from a very aggressive form of Alzheimer’s.


Recycling Plant Pots and Seed Trays

Some recent news from Pat at the Council:

Please find information detailed below via Adrian Atkinson, Representative, Holburn Street, to share with the plotters at your sites.

You may be aware that the Council has started to roll-out mixed recycling facilities and this includes some things that couldn’t previously be recycled locally – including ‘plastic pots, tubs and trays’. I’ve checked with the ACC waste team and this includes plastic plant pots and trays so they can now be recycled rather then put into rubbish for landfill. The new service is currently being rolled out for premises that have on-street recycling/rubbish bins – i.e. flats and tenements, with individual houses to follow at a later date but it does mean that you might have a mixed recycling bin nearby (as we do in Ferryhill) that you could use. Check this link for more details.



Pat Wilson
Project Support Officer