Allotment, Gardening on a budget, Grow Your Own

GYO – A New Mould

This year has begun allowing mild and moderate temperatures, as I look outside our potted Christmas tree is still holding its pine needles despite being put out at the beginning of the month. I am quite shocked it has not begun to dry out yet, I will find it hilarious if it actually roots in my new favourite pot. For now it has pride of place on the decking as the evergreen spruces are wonderful whatever time of year, and adds a green cover over a large expanse of our house wall.

My Autumn container garden is still going strong, the variety of seasonal colours plants has cheered up the winter months and show no sign of wilting. I am hopeful they will last long enough to self seed ensuring they return for the following year without any assistance.

I have managed to source some manure for late next week, which will allow me to prepare the pumpkin bed for this summer. I plan to edge and trench dig over the next week to allow the frost to break down the lower layers, ensuring when the manure arrives I can fill the trenches and rake over the last few inches. This will protect the area allowing my children to plant without access to the manure (see autumn preparation Blog 2018) I will mark the planting trenches were the pumpkin seedlings can be planted by covering manured trenches with straw.

This year I have a wide selection of gourds and pumpkins which I plan to trial the small pumpkins and gourds to grow on the trellis of the pergola. This will allow me a larger growing area without renting a further half plot. I will also be increasing the varieties of brassica crops as I plan on cloche covering large areas of my remaining beds, my hope is to be harvesting double the crops of last year.

I find that the preparation will be completed as and when I can attend to the plot, as my youngest is still small I will be lucky to get half an hour at a time. However a well prepared half an hour is better than an hour unplanned, so I look forward to preparing the ground for the season ahead.

As you can see the grass has fully recovered from last years burn out, something my husband is waiting to cut back before we next return, at least to date we have paid for this year and with that in mind I can relax into the growing year using the resources we have collected over the last ten years. I have only a few crops to source, this years onion sets and potatoes other than that my seeds are set aside to be planted as required. I look forward to sharing another year sowing, growing and harvesting with my family by my side.

This year I am adding to our resources by looking to purchase some ornament moulds to try making my own! It is something I have never tried but have always wanted to, after seeing a few gems I am hopeful they will make a good addition to our garden. I feel a few good moulds will allow me to add to and shrubs and flowers I can grow to sell this year.

I am working a few hours to help locally, sharing crops, my skills and my knowledge to assist when I can. However my focus is  settling my youngest in and whatever else I manage, above and beyond our family is a bonus. It is the time of year for clearing the outside spaces and painting for another year, I am enduring the chaos of cold weather and biding my time for warmer weather and the freedom it brings.

Happy Horticulture!



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