Warmish start today . The landscape was delightfully bathed in a soothing yellowy hue underlit with orange tones that the January sun made as her penultimate offering before she gives way to February.

I rolled up my trouser legs and dug out more compost on the allotment. We are very fortunate to have a three full heaps of decent deep compost thanks to the neglect factor! No one turns the compost or bothers with it . Plot holders tend to either buy the stuff in bags or have horse manure delivered . I've noticed some of the more senior tenants have their own compost Blog for website.docxheaps which they tend to regularly and disseminate accordingly. These folk tend to have superb potatoes , and Runner beans – in fact everything they grow including sweet corn does well because they mulch and feed.

This is our third year of community allotment holding - and I have only just cottoned on to the fact that before the other plot holders start to arrive with their respective seed potatoes ( a sure sign of spring) , we can reap the best of the communal heap by taking off the top third layers (which is woody and weedy and not broken down) and dig deep in order to excavate that garden gold.

I attend the allotment a lot and this winter job is a valuable way of keeping warm and spreading the good earth .

I always feel satisfied after three barrow loads , its lovely to see the Robin snatching diligently at earthworms and woodlice – blinking in the light, sometimes the Robin has a whole line up of them in his beak. Lately we have had Crows and the now resident seagulls that scavenge the near by secondary school grounds for chip butty scraps . We also have pigeons .

Not had much success with cabbages – thanks to the Pigeons dining out on them . It would be good if they could eat the slugs instead.

Birds are beautiful but sometimes they need a ‘Drive thru' sign to entice them to eat all the slugs and snails I make available for them . Maybe the cat puts them off .