The trials and tribulations of a small garden vegetable patch in Kent.
By it's very nature, diary based blogs such as this become repetitive after a couple of years and it's increasingly fifficult to find something new to add. So, from March onwards, I'm going to cut down on the number of posts to only those that I think will be of interest to readers. Posts from previous years will still be accessible but I won't repeat stuff unless there is significant change.
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Monday, 4 March 2013
By 7am yesterday, the garden was bathed in the first serious sunshine we've experienced in 2013. By 9am, the aforementioned sun had begun to warm the air resulting in a truly Spring-like day. Fortunately, I had nothing planned, other than to work in the garden. Even 'er in doors appeared outdoors, together with the Director of Horticulture. However, the latter seemed more inclined to playing football rather than helping!
As I am still recovering from a chest infection and a flu-like bug, I thought it best to get the only urgent heavy job out of the way first and then do the easy stuff later. This involved moving the remaining pile of topsoil that has sat on my drive for the best part of 8 months. The soil has always been earmarked for the new raised bed I put together in January, but this has been the first opportunity to finish filling it owing to the persistent wet weather of late. Anyway, it's done now. All that remains is to slowly but surely incorporate it into the existing compost by going over it a number of times with a 3 prong cultivator, followed by a good raking to produce a fine tilth.
The same wet weather that has stopped me from filling the raised bed has also meant that I haven't yet been able yet to rotovate the open part of the plot or indeed, do anything to it. The remains of last years crop of spinach is still in the ground having survived temperatures down to -5C and starting to send up new growth.
I've now tidied up the plants in the hope that I'll get a nice early crop well before this years sowings mature.
The only real job of consequence to do in the greenhouse was to fit the first collars to my 'Pendle Improved' leeks in order to encourage them to lengthen. I'm not too optimistic that I can produce leeks to the same standard as last year's, but I'll certainly have a go
While on the subject of leeks, for general kitchen use, I've sown 60 stations with 'Autumn Giant' seed, a variety that I haven't tried before. They're now in the warmth of my office until germination.
Other sowings included Chilli - 'Demon Red', Cauliflower - 'Raleigh' and Cabbage - 'Golden Acre' and Lettuce - 'Little Gem'.
Last week, Thompson & Morgan sent me a 'come back, all is forgiven' mailshot which included a £5 voucher. This was timely seeing as I'd planned to buy some 'Gardener's Delight' tomato seed which I'd forgotten to get, some more chilli seed to replace the failed 'Firecracker' sown just after Christmas and 3 packets of Cosmos seed. The whole lot for £2.10. Cant be bad!
Finally, I found 2x 15-cell modules in one of my propagators with onion seedlings poking through but without labels. I think they're the remains of my 'Vento' seed, but I'm not at all certain. Age does wonders for the memory.......not!