Allotment, Gardening on a budget, Grow Your Own, Propagation

GYO – Winter Planning!

Today (Monday!) was meant to be allotment day! however with a house full of colds and house bound children I have sent my husband to check the site, as we have not been for a few weeks. I have still some beans and peas to sow, I am building a book for my Son and daughter for choosing home tasks, with a little poetic narrative and visual prompts to support learning areas, I hope to use it through summer. I cannot type up any of my other work (Entertaining little gem…who is finally participating in daytime!)

So today I am nursing, reading and researching while I have a moment to sit! Waiting for fabric panels and moulds to arrive, hoping for a good report from the allotment…

The afternoon arrived with the news that my plot has needed a few things repairing but as the pictures show to say our last visit was before Christmas it is looking pretty good. The water tank is still half full, pipework intact the felt may require looking at to ensure it is all getting to the guttering, we collected a massive roll for £15 last year so as with the summerhouse the roof will be looked at on the next sunny day.

The fence despite its deep footings had required fixing again, however my husband secured it before we left to ensure our first visit is one of work and not maintenance;

Spring Jobs;

  1. Paint shed and fencing.
  2. Dig main land beds.
  3. Purchase scaffolding boards
  4. Find 15 slabs
  5. Remove rooted brambles
  6. Collect nettles for the water feed barrel
  7. Check compost in centre bin (2 years on)
  8. Cut grass and edgings
  9. Dig potato bed
  10. Clear winter plants

To mention a few, my decking board beds barely lasted a year so I have decided to make the three beds stronger and deeper to reduce weed growth and the longevity of the space. I hope to use the compost dug from the first year to fill the new beds as it has been left composting for two years now, it should be ready for use.

As my husband but spade to the ground which gave off a fabulous ringing sound, so I am at peace knowing that I can enjoy my work at home without worrying about preparing the space! The ground is frozen solid as the video of him raking showed, there was no need fretting not even a centimetre of movement.

My broad beans, Brussels and Brassicas are still growing on nicely, I will either have a harvest or extra seeds so, whichever I harvest it shall not be wasted. My new seedlings already for potting on in the kitchen are soon to be moved into a cloche outside, and I am looking forward to setting tomato seeds, Peppers and chilli’s this weekend. As I find these will grow well indoors until the frost clears, then they can be set outside in the green house when the temperature warms.

I have found our old supplier of manure who supplies 60l bags, donating a percentage received to our favourite horse charity, so when we can I will be collecting around twenty as I know a few people who will not get around to collecting their own! I shall enjoy trench manuring the bed for the pumpkin and sweetcorn bed, as that will be two years of nutrients into our main beds through crop rotation. It also builds up the soil levels from the first dig ensuring you do not have low ground beds.

My four raised beds are sat waiting for old crops to be removed and seedlings to be set in, along with our cloche beds these will allow us the ability to grow a variety of crops without the addition of covers and cloches.

On the restructuring of the strawberry beds, I plan to slab the area outside of the shed as it is the perfect place to sit and work. This bed has been broken due to the constant walking around and I would like a space for the children to sit and draw or paint while we are working on other areas. This space is south westerly so in the warm days we can set our parasol and ensure a space that they can sit out of the heat of the sun.

The joy of winter is preparing for another spring!…Another season of growing!

Happy Horticulture!



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