Advice is arriving thick and fast, changing daily even hourly, about how we cope with the coronavirus pandemic.
So how does it affect people with allotments?
Yes – we all need to get better at washing our hands, which is the best protection against catching the virus.
Yes – we should all avoid spending time in close contact with other people in crowded and badly ventilated spaces
If we are especially vulnerable – for example we have certain health conditions or poor immunity, or we’re over 60 – then we need to take extra precautions as the risks are higher if we get coronavirus.
BUT, and it’s a big but, that doesn’t mean we should stop going to our plots – for my money, the benefits far outweigh the risks.
- It’s outdoors, which is definitely preferable to being indoors (if the weather is okay).
- It’s a break from being confined to the 4 walls of your home or workplace.
- Your mental well-being will benefit from being away from the stress of not just everyday life, but the worry we’re all now experiencing
- If you’re having to self-isolate, you can still socialize with a wave and hallo to other plotholders from a safe distance
- Growing your own – a wonderful investment in fresh plant food which will help your immune system as well as your overall health
There’s things we can do to limit the spread on sites – for example we could start disinfecting toilet door handles regularly, or provide paper towels. In the meantime, people need to protect themselves through proper handwashing while they are on site, and if they are in a vulnerable group, taking their own towels to the toilet and avoiding communal tea-drinking.
Five Steps to Washing Your Hands the Right Way
This is probably the single most effective thing you can do right now to help yourself and others from getting the virus.
Wet your hands with clean, running water (warm or cold), turn off the tap, and apply soap. Lather your hands by rubbing them together with the soap. Lather the backs of your hands, between your fingers, and under your nails. Scrub your hands for at least 20 seconds.