My next step with the garden is to plan. And I have a few… I have to admit I was dreaming up ideas for our garden long before we moved in.
So here is a list of what I would like to achieve:
-Making the garden safe for our toddler is my top priority.
-We need to do some fence maintenance.
-Pruning and working out what we actually have in the garden. I think I am going to have to start a log book so I can remember. It’s a bit of a mystery until spring and then probably a until a full year has passed, but I’m trying to work it out. It’s a fairly established garden, which is nice as we can enjoy it already, but it does also mean it’s not a blank canvas and we need to work around some established plants or be brutal.
-Sorting and reorganising my allotment gear. Which has been put into our shed… in a bit of a crazy pile. (Moving an allotment is not an easy job!!) But the shed smells very authentic; just like my grandpas did.
-Working out a general plan for the space. Involving a greenhouse (this is realistically something for next year) and creating growing space for veg and flowers….
-Sorting out the soil. Whilst the garden has been cared for, it lacks the beautiful soil I achieved at the allotment. You don’t have to dig far to hit clay and rocks. Raised beds and lots of digging are on the agenda.
-A diy ‘mud kitchen’ for our toddler.
-Location for my hammock!! Although I have no idea where the bolts or actual hammock are since we moved!!
-A small child friendly wildlife pond. Bug hotel, nesting boxes and feeders.
-Pots and pots and pots for my dream container patio situation.
-I need to remove some brambles although I think they will be my new garden foe. I like the fruit, but the spikes less!
I’m also expanding my seed sourcing. Discovering chiltern seeds via an insta explore. Which has made me realise that we need proper garden plan as my ideas are running a bit wild. So I need to focus and I need to get going.
I’m feeling a little overwhelmed with the ‘garden’, but I think it’s a ‘jump in a crack on’ situation. Need to remind myself nothing is permanent and the learning has to start somewhere. I’m looking forward to the clocks changing as some evening gardening can start!
Hello, it’s been a while!
It’s been a busy few years; but having finally achieved the ultimate dream. Having our very own garden! If you follow my Instagram you will know that we said goodbye to my lovely allotment (as we moved areas). We also sold our flat and bought a house… funny how I focus on the allotment and garden. We are now ready to start the next part of our journey!
So the real task begins to ‘get to know’ the garden and to make it ours. I loved using this blog for every stage of my garden adventure from balcony-to my allotment -and now ‘grown up’ garden! Marking my ideas, thoughts, trials and tribulations!
My focus has shifted from my allotment for the past few years when our son arrived. And he became the ‘project’ and will obviously always be the ongoing master project! So the gardening and growing obsession has taken a bit of a back seat, but…. it has never stopped. Having started him at the allotment from a young age he is a good trainee in the making and is not afraid to get his little hands dirty! If only they made gardening gloves for 2 year olds!!
I love being outside and working hard to achieve a goal, it’s probably the challenge I enjoy the most. ‘Cheesy’ I know but I’m excited to see what we can achieve in our new garden.
The new, not new garden:
We looked and looked ….and looked for houses, and it was not easy to get our flat sold in the first place. But I think we got lucky and found a gem of a house with a good sized garden!
We have only been ‘in’ a few months, moving at the end of last year. Although we saw the garden in the middle of summer it had been hot and the garden was understandably a little neglected. But you can see it’s been loved and nurtured by the previous owners.
One of my favourite plants is a mature wisteria. Which has been trained over an arch. I have tried to give it an ‘over winter’ prune, without being to brutal. It would be great to get some advise please.
Now it is getting warmer we are starting to see the signs of spring. Lots of bulbs and shoots are popping up all over the garden. But at this stage my knowledge is seriously lacking on ‘garden’ plans. So I am trying a soft approach in some areas ; whilst I learn….combined with heavy handed approach in more forgiving areas of the garden. It’s not an easy balance. Also finding the time to really give the garden attention is really a challenge. I’m looking forward to lighter evenings and lots of bbqs!
We had a few in the garden!!! A rusty lawn roller, wheel barrow and various paving slabs, bricks and sand… not to mentions large pots were also left as garden treasure. Being an allotment scavenger at heart… this made me pretty happy! I now have 3 compost bins!!! Not to mention a gnome, mermaid and a duck garden ornament!! And a garden bench which has already been well used.
I have not written on here for a while. But today it’s the first day of summer!… And it’s raining (are we surprised?…..at least the plot will be happy).
Here is a run down on the plot.
Courgette x3 + 1 still in greenhouse
Squash x2. + 1 still in greenhouse
Sweet peas and other flowers 🙂
Potatoes x 6 types.
And in the greenhouse:
It’s all growing along with very little help from me. Just weeding and watering.
Last night we had our first big pot of raspberries. 🙂 The strawberries are being eaten by other beasties.
The to do list is:
-pot up the rest of my greenhouse
– Set my squash around frames, so it can grow upwards
-do battle with strawberry eating beasts
-pull up first flowered potatoes (set flower about a month ago :))
And I’m sure I will find other jobs!
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I’m at the stage that I need a plan again.
Things I need to do on the plot this weekend:
– Check sweet peas and sweetcorn are alive and possibly plant in the ground.
– Get my structures in place. Bamboo poles please!
– Clear ‘back area’ on my plot ready for the hammock stand in may.
– Sow beetroot, chard seeds direct in soild.
– Find my paper plans! Probably do this first… as I may have illegally sown extra crops. And it could go horribly wrong!
– Get some wood chipping for my strawberry bed.
– Get a proper frame made for my raspberry canes, and string them up! And remove any cheeky unwanted suckers that have popped up.
-Tidy greenhouse! A good rainy day job!
– Investigate compost bin 1… And dig into back bed… I need to put a little path back in here as it proved to be impossible last year.
– Do a bit of general maintenance… Weeding, fixing, levelling…
And I think that lot will keep me busy!
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I have a horrid never ending cold at the moment. But I had to laugh when yesterday I was scrabbling in my pocket and pulled out seed tape instead of my tissue!
So yes the spring onion seed tape went in 🙂 and was not used as a tissue. I have never ‘seed’ anything like it… Giant wide seed tape… With a little strip of seeds in the middle. Let’s hope it works.
Garlic and onions moved out from my greenhouse, and went in a freshly dug patch.
And I got my mixed leeks sown. And I got some beetroots sown, or I will do when I go back today.
I got lots of seeds in on Friday night… As a result we are dinning around seedlings…Needs must!
The sown list
Courgette x2 varieties
Sunflowers x 2 varieties
Squash red kiri
Tomatoes… The first!
And here is the plot in overview. My bulbs are doing well 🙂 seeing all the bees last weekend I’m so glad I put so many in. And it looks great!! More next year.
And my bulb lasagne pots are working, I can see my tulips slowly emerging. Then it’s the summer bulbs after that!
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So the weekend came …and went! I didn’t get a lot done, but I did get my hands dirty (mainly because I forgot my gardening gloves!)
I think my weekend is best explained in photos
I went on a lovely walk with a friend
My cape gooseberry fruits are becoming ripe off branch 🙂
And my plants in the greenhouse are still going strong!
I have a mini harvest…
I’m still getting a good haul on my raspberry plants. I’m really chuffed; it’s year one and they have been fantastic producers… Can’t wait for year 2!
I had my first ever carrot success! They may be small… But hopefully they make up for it in flavour! ha ha!
3 of my courgette plants are still going…
And that’s my lot… My to do list will just have to be done next week :).
I can feel the growing season slowing down a little now. I think it’s seeing my tomatoes gone 😭! It’s barely light when I leave home and dark when I get home… So its a mission to get to the plot during the week now. And the weekends become an exciting suprise to see what’s changed!
I sourced some manure last weekend… 4 bags of well rotted goodness. Yum yum (that’s how bad it is…I’m excited about poo!) And I eagerly eyed up some garlic and onion sets… I had mixed success with both over the years (not many)…. Try try and try again! Funny enough I had my best success from some cheap n cheerful sets from B&Q.
My cape gooseberry fruits are seeming to ripen off the branch! Which is exciting and amazing! I will have to do a plot run tomorrow; as I have not watered my greenhouse plants all week! (should just be clinging onto life, let’s hope).
On my to do list is (for the next few weeks)
-Sort our my raspberry support system… Need to borrow a cordless drill and screw driver (parents be afraid!)
-Research how and when to prune my raspberries… Early. Summer. Autumn.
-Thinking about removing our resident… Sucker non fruiting plum tree… And getting something new and ‘fruitful’ to replace it.
– Clean my greenhouse
And post this post! 🙂
I’m thinking about spring time flowers this month; I always forget to get these in. So this year I’m getting my bulbs in a row (so to speak!). But as always it’s a battle for space and time on our little plot.
I sourced some snow drops, crocus, mini daffodils and some allium bulbs. Nearly all have gone in. But I’m planning to sink the plastic pots in the ground, let them flower and then rotate for veggies.
Last year my mother grew some lovely frilly tulips and she gave me some this year 🙂 so these will be added to the mix!
I have to be honest… I might have too many bulbs not enough space! Pots to the rescue!!
In the summer we went to Hampton court flower show….My first flower show! To be honest it was a bit busy, but we saw some inspiring flowers and I got lots of ideas!! Last year I deveoted spare space (made space) for my favourite sweet peas and sunflowers… So I’m going to have a fight on my hands next year!
I read Monty dons Jewel Garden earlier this year, with the mention of hundreds of tulips bulbs…. It really got me thinking what could I do with my tiny space. I’m also thinking long term I need to start my collection of bulbs!! At least using sunken pots I can pull them up and take them with me… A sort of portable garden.
In my researching have come across bulb lasagne! Which is bulb layering for non stop flowers!! I have done a little experiment with this… But I think it could end up like all the fireworks going off at once! Here is some of my bulb research on pintrest at http:// www.pinterest.com/bloomorbust/bulbs/
With lots of ideas it’s tricky to cram it all in, but every year it means I improve the plot to make the most of the space. And every year I get a bit better.
With autumn fast rolling in its a great time to plan for some early spring blooms!
The plot has been plodding along. It’s a great time as it mostly takes care of itself… Just add water!
The eat list:
-the final onions red and white
-tomatoes! at last!!
-rocket and spinach
Over the weekend: 2 hours quick visit
-Pulled up my final onions
-moved and spaced my chard seedlings to take up the onions space
-spaced out my sweet pea seedlings
Things I’m excited about this week:
-my sunflowers are looking pretty awesome. Most are lined up along the front edge of my plot. Can’t wait for them to flower!! Think I have about 12 sunflowers dotted around my plot this year.
-more padron peppers. We had our first last week! they were amazing fried in a pan with my courgettes.
-Put another potted courgette in… Taking up the first potatoes spot.
Things I need to do:
-Strawberry runners in pots. I have moved plants every year, but this year the oldies are going to be replaced with baby runners! (finally a chance to tidy up) So I need to get some strong runners set.
-Get some raspberry training wires set up.. As they are starting to get a bit crazy!
-Look at collecting sweet pea seedlings. So I know the colours!!
– Get potatoes up… Asap! As it rained so much I’m just waiting for the right moment!!
-Decide what I can grow in potato bed over Autumn to winter. Any ideas?
I’m reading ‘The Jewel Garden’ by Sarah and Monty Don at the moment. Feeling very inspired!!