Whenever I go abroad I try and take in the vegetation and look at what’s growing in that particular corner of the world. My curiosity always gets the better of me and when I return home I look up the conditions as to why certain plants survive where they do.
The last time I was able to do this kind of nerdy, but this truly gratifying research was in Barbados. This time I’m in Poland, in a the most idealistic setting you could imagine. It’s called Lipiany. I’ve been there before, and my advice is, if you’d like to escape the rat race, truly relax – then go to Lipiany or somewhere similar and slow down.
The climate in Poland is very similar to that of the UK – the only difference is that everything is a bit more telling, for instance you get snow in the winter, sun in summer and brown leaves in the autumn as you would expect. When I was there last week – it was in the early 30’s with rain during the night so it really was a great little break away.
Lipiany is a small town, with a gigantic lake at it’s heart. It’s described as a rural-urban area and while I was there I couldn’t help but check out the local allotments and see how things are done in other parts of the world. Allotments in Poland are called działki and are classed constitutional and a cherished part of the culture. Allotments in Poland are thought of so much because there’s over a million of them in operation.
Allotments are classed as family gardens (rather than leisure gardens here in the UK) so its not uncommon for them to actually look like a garden, rather than a plot of land used to grow fruit and veg.
One thing did I notice was the mixture of styles and the use of different materials used to construct the sheds or little houses, one of the essentials of allotment life. In Poland there’s a term called kombinować, which is untranslatable, but means ‘making do with what’s available’ or ‘finding a way around the official regulations.’ Very much like here in the UK in some parts.
There’s even a competition every year for the best or most Exemplary Plot of the Year. And when you see them, you really do get a touch of allotment envy! They really are fantastic to look at and admire.
Anyway, without delay, check out the gallery below. If you’re like me, you’ll go away with some fantastic ideas for your own plot perhaps?
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