Apr 2, 2012

The Spring Update

What a week we have just had. Glorious warm wall to wall sunshine (which was even hot on some days) and certainly had me receiving the symptoms of focal hyperhidrosis to put it nicely!!! A shame then that it’s come crashing back down to reality. SNOW is even on the cards. Thankfully, I managed to get a lot of work done in the garden. One of the biggest jobs was to create my potato bed. This involved removing the black membrane off the parts that were covered, then lightly fork over the uncovered soil, removing any weeds that had survived, and then finally dig out two 8m long trenches, 12” deep. I of course picked the warmest day to do this, a barmy 22c. The bed will actually house 3 trenches but I could only manage the two. I’ll get the 3rd one done as I back fill the two side trenches over the next 2 weeks. That way I can harvest the middle trench last and if I mess up with the side trenches due to frost, I will at least have a backup.

Potato Bed

I also removed the weed membrane from the Root bed and the Legume bed and again weeded out the stubborn roots and lightly forked over the soil. I managed to find a lonesome Parsnip which looked perfectly fine but as it was just the one it was discarded. Not of course without snapping it open first to smell the sweetest Parsnip smell there is. It certainly has me thinking about growing more this year and leaving them in the ground as it survived being completely covered up for 4 months.

Vegetable Patch

2 weeks ago saw my second brassica cage be built. This one, a smaller but longer affair will house Cabbages, Purple Sprouting Broccoli, and Kale. It may only be one of each that fits in there but hey ho, at least it’s something new. The seedlings for the PSB and Kale though blew me away with how fast they germinated. By far the fastest at only 3 days on the kitchen windowsill. I sowed 3 per pot and they have all come up so I’ve thinned some out already to one per pot. Time will tell how they get on.

Brassica Cages

I’ve had many failures this term though but nothing that I cannot rectify nor learn from for next year. Firstly, the herbs I sowed failed miserably. This was due to using biodegradable pots. Being such they lose their moisture very fast and this then is why I think my seeds failed to germinate. Other seedlings were lost due to accidents with family opening the airing cupboard door too fast and yet again I’ve failed to germinate Little Gem Lettuce seeds, how is that even possible???
Lettuce Seedlings

Back to the good stuff though and the Leek seedlings have come on nicely and all my other seedlings have been potted on and so forth. The onion bed has had a good weeding and I have now planted up the spare sets I started off in the greenhouse to fill in the gaps. I've also started off a load of spring onion seeds in pots and will plant them out as I sow my carrots.

Greenhouse Seedlings

Spring Onion Seedlings

Pea Shoots

Brussels Sprouts Potted on

On to the immediately future then and this coming week sees me working just two days so out in the garden I shall go. The weather isn’t looking too good though so I may stick to the greenhouse and concentrate on my seedlings and wotnot. My legume bed will get its support frames put in ready for the plants and my carrots will need sowing. I will probably start off my Parsnips as well and I might even see about fitting in a couple of Sweetcorn plants should I choose to grow some. It’s full steam ahead as April's Easter weekend arrives thick and fast. Thanks for reading.