Allotments were originally set up to allow poor farm workers to grow enough food to support their families. They were widespread by the end of the nineteenth century and highly valued by people in both rural and urban areas.
Today, demand for plots to ‘grow your own’ is high, and allotments are also important places to relax, socialise and exercise. They are also important for our wildlife, providing valuable habitat in built up areas and intensively managed farmland. Encouraging birds, bees, hoverflies, reptiles, amphibians, bats, hedgehogs, shrews and beetles is good for the allotment, as many will eat garden pests such as slugs, aphids and caterpillars. Bees and adult hoverflies will also pollinate your crops. Even spiders, centipedes and wasps are beneficial!
There are lots of books and guides on gardening with wildlife in mind. Natural England has produced a number of guides, which provide a good starting point for Welsh gardeners, and a specific guide for allotment holders.
To find out about the availability and location of allotments in your area please contact your town/community council or local allotment association. If they can’t help, please contact us using the details on this page.