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Monday, 17 May 2010

Making paths

Thanks to the wonders of B&Q and their builders section we now have shiny new paths for our veg plot. The builders section is cheaper than the ornamental stone in the gardening section. We bought many (many many....many) bags of limestone chippings (2 person job to push the trolley) and a roll of weed-proof fabric, which we then tried to cut and fit on one of the most windy days in May so far. They may have been some bad tempered muttering...and one accidental stoning.

Sunday, 16 May 2010


My first strawberries are starting to form! A work mate gave me these plants, they'd been started off in a greenhouse so have a nice head start. Now they are sitting in the sun trap of my patio, behind a gate where the hounds can't get to them (it's not just the widdling that's a problem when big dogs are around plants...they are quite fond of 'pick your own', so I have to hide soft fruits from greedy woofers). The bag was also kindly gifted, it's a huge bag and the strawberries are already taking over like mad things. I've never grown my own strawberries before, I'm excited to see if they taste different to shop bought!

More on the main plot later...

Monday, 10 May 2010

Planting at last!

Yesterday I re designed the 'Grow Veg' plan to encompass the actual dimensions of the garden, this was a pain in the (water?)butt as the garden is all mad angles. But I have it, the final plan for this year! It may all go horribly wrong, I am very unsure about the bed near the shed, which I think might be too stony for root veg (and I have 5 types in that bed), but the bed at the top of this plan has fences which I think might please the pea plants.
Planted so far are the Spring Onions, Horseradish, Salsify, Potatoes, Rocket and 2 sorts of Lettuce. I have decided I really like seed tape (bought accidentally), it costs more but it's the easiest thing ever...even Nathan could manage to grow it *runs and hides*. Now I'd like it to rain so I don't have to get the hosepipe out.

Saturday, 8 May 2010

Potato planting..go go go!

This is me looking particularly not dressed for planting the seed potatoes, and I am very white because I am freezing my butt off because I fannied about all day in the garden centre and then had a mad attack of garden guilt and came home dug the middle raised bed to aerate it and planted stuff at 7ish. This blog is full of tres flattering pictures of me, I might start gardening in eyeliner and lippy! ;op. First in the raised beds is Maris Piper Potatoes. Nomnom!

Top quote of today's garden exercise (after a discussion on giving away some of the millions of seeds potatoes we have for the price of a beer...) Nath (in an inadvertent slightly cockney accent) - "ah but the bed is slightly canted", Bex - "wait...are we back to the beer again?".

A pic of raised beds:

There are 3 beds, two long ones and one shorter one, to allow for the collection of water from the water butt sitting the end of the shed. They are really long beds, I think we might be growing food for the whole road! My earlier idea of joining the Hugh F-W landshare program (to garden someone else's land) may not be needed!
I'm thinking I might put the garden furniture at this end on the decking, could be a pleasant spot to sit.

Nathan's Wellies

What a fine figure of a man! An excellent example of the modern urban gardener, modelling his newly received wellies (thanks Ro!) after a hard afternoons graft digging the raised beds and planting. Well, for most of it I was foraging in Asda whilst the much more green fingered Bex did the digging, but I did heave the compost into the beds!

Speaking of which, 100 litre bags of compost are quite heavy (thanks Ian!); I'd recommend slightly smaller ones if you're carrying them any distance. Still, that which does not kill us makes us walk like Quasimodo, as they say.

So, we now have three made up and filled raised beds, one of which is full to the brim of potatoes (boil 'em, mash 'em, stick 'em inna stew!) , and the other two ready for planting with the many, many seeds we now have (thanks Jo, John and Ronan!). I suspect we'll get them done tomorrow, as much of today was taken up with a very pleasant trip round Melbicks. We failed to purchase what we actually went for (a seed box for storing our masses of seed, sweet potato for planting), but did acquire other fine garden swag - a huge reinforced bag for planting of tomatoes & some horseradish tubers for tasty roast beef accompaniment later in the year (Bex adds - and Salsify seeds). And chocolate. Mission accomplished!

And now for tea :)