I don't know all the answers nor do I pretend too. Hi I'm 'Paul' AKA 'AJ', let me get this out of the way now...NO I’m not RHS trained (wish I was) and NO I don’t have a background in horticulture nor am I a botany geek! I definitely do not have a reliance on any intoxicating substances LOL but I’m known to enjoy a cold glass of something on sunny days – which are far and few between so that statement is incorrect. I’ll have a tipple with anyone who is warm and friendly and on days when it’s overcast or raining ; )
So what qualifies me to publish a series of books about growing your own, without the relevant qualifications?
First and foremost – being a father. The position comes with a responsibilty to educate my children the value of a healthy life style and all that entails. Second is experience. Hands up if you’ve made a few mistakes in life – I know I have. One thing is for sure, with hard work comes the fruit of your labours. And this is true in just about all aspects of your life. Remember life is about balance – ‘work hard and play hard’ – this used to be my outlook on life in my younger years. I’m still up for hard work but I’m more ‘enjoy your work and live happy’ these days – if only you could be born wise young!
I’d like to think of myself as the average chap on the street who took on an overgrown patch to provide for his family. In truth, my story is a little deeper and the clue is in the title of the books. People take on an allotment for different reasons – mainly to grow fresh, delicious fruit and veg. Me, I found that the solitude which a plot offers and the fact I had some control over what happens on my little patch, gave me peace of mind in this fast paced modernity that is life today.
So with the ethics of hardwork (which taking on an allotment is at times) and wanting to educate my girls about where their food comes from as well as growing our own 5 a-day. Plus the very fact that Claire is a vegetarian of more than 28 years and discerning of quality organic produce – means the very foundation on which I stand is equal to most of you guys – surely this qualifies me just as much as any author on the subject.
The one thing I do have in my favour – is the fact that all the produce grown and pictured in the book is from AJ’s plot grown by me and the girls. So it’s real-life! Which also means all the mistakes made as a novice are illustrated too and this is not to be shied away from. All the projects illustrated in the series are undertaken by me – the idea being that if we as a family with all the restrictions on time and money – can do it, then so can you!
WISHING YOU EVERY GROWING SUCCESS…
Team Allotment Junkie
Paul, Claire, Maya, Yasmin and Charlie the dog.