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Ministry of Agriculture Allotment & Garden Guide


Click image for
facsimile of page 3

January 1945

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5 / 6 / 7 / 8


Ministry of Agriculture
Allotment & Garden Guides Index

January 1945

February 1945

March 1945

April 1945

May 1945

June 1945

July 1945

August 1945

September 1945

October 1945

November 1945

December 1945

The Allotment DVD
The delights of having an allotment. 15 programmes as seen on ITV. Suit new and established growers. Seasonal guide, top gardening tips, fascinating food facts and insights into what's really in those sheds! 

THE ALLOTMENT SERIES was first shown on ITV 1 West

Allotments UK and other related allotment links


         "Organic" manures usually provide essential plant foods, the three most important being Nitrogen, Phosphate and Potash. Plants need a balanced ration of these foods. They take them in, dissolved in soil water, through their roots. Most soils contain a certain amount of them. But if the plants are to get enough, you must keep up the supply by manuring the soil. You can do this most effectively by using both "organic" manures and mineral fertilizers––popularly called "artificials".

drawing of wheelbarrow with manure


drawing showing to manure 1/3 plot

But, you may say, farmyard manure is very scarce and most difficult to get. That is true ; but you can make compost yourself   (Dig for Victory Leaflet No. 7 tells you how––it is free), though maybe you could not make enough from your garden waste to supply all the needs of your land in one season. So it is a question of using wisely what little manure you can get or the compost you can make. If you manured about one-third of your land with farmyard manure or compost every year and practised crop rotation (as recommended in the Ministry's free cropping plan), you would go some way to keeping your soil in good heart. The one-third of the plot most suitable for this treatment is the part where you are going to grow your onions, leeks, peas and beans.*

About 'Artificials'**

         Now a word about "artificials"––or, what is a better term, "mineral fertilizers". The use of the word "artificials" makes some people thank that "artificials" are not as good as "organics". Both supply exactly the same kind of plant foods in different quantities. The "organics" generally rot down slowly and so supply steady though small amounts of plant foods during the whole of the plant's growing period.
     The well-known Sulphate of Ammonia, which comes from gas works and coke ovens, is a good source of nitrogen. Superphosphate, made from rock, is rich in phosphate;
  basic slag, which we get from iron works, also contains phosphate. Potash is dug out of mines in France and Germany.  


     To meet the needs of gardeners, the Government arranged for the supply of a good standard fertilizer at a reasonable price. It is called "National Growmore Fertilizer" and contains the three important plant foods––the analysis being 7 per cent. N. (nitrogen), 7 per cent. P2O5 (phosphate) and 7 per cent. K2O (potash).

    * [ed. note] According to Carrots Love Tomatoes, beans and peas do not like onions and leeks and should not be planted close to each other.  
    ** [ed. note] earthly pursuits urges everyone to avoid "artificials" if possible and practice sustainable, organic gardening. The articles are only presented as part of the historical pamphlet.