Thursday, 23 May 2013

Mark's Veg Plot in May

At this time of year, my plot aways looks busy. It is crowded with pots, seed-trays, mini-greenhouses etc - lots of things in temporary accommodation, being "hardened-off", that's to say being gradually accustomed to outdoor life.


Most years, by the middle of May I have put my frost-tender plants like chillis, tomatoes and cucumbers, outside in their final positions. This year the weather has been very disappointing so far. Apart from that brief spell of glorious weather (miraculously coinciding with the May Day Bank Holiday weekend), we have had precious little of the classic Spring conditions. Today is typical: grey sky, strong breeze, temperature at midday 13C. Not conducive to rapid plant growth!


The Early potatoes in pots have done well inside that plastic coldframe thing, but there is no sign yet of the Pink Fir Apple ones planted in the big black tubs seen in the foreground here:-


Beyond the water-butt seen in the previous photo is this. Lots of potted herbs; chilli plant acclimatising; tomatoes in the big terracotta-coloured pots, and peas climbing up wigwams of canes.


Having been in those pots for several months already, the peas are finally beginning to look as if they feel like climbing. I had never intended to grow peas at all (these are ones originally intended for consumption as peashoots), but if they keep going as well as they are doing now I should get a nice little harvest. Few things are more delicious than home-grown peas eaten straight off the plant, eh?


There are more potatoes in pots behind the very under-utilised gas barbecue (in its black cover). The big pots of herbs like Sage and Lavender are slowly coming to life, with soft green shoots replacing the stark grey twigs. In the foreground is my Baby Salad crate - complete with anti-badger precautions.


Then there is the massive Woodblocx raised bed, currently looking rather sparsely populated (just 3 "Maskotka" tomato plants at present), but soon to play host to cucumbers and sweet peppers. The Build-a-Ball system is seen here loosely supporting a net to keep the wildlife off.


Likewise here we see more Build-a-Ball items and netting covering a bed containing Shallots, brassicas (6 x Tenderstem broccoli and 4 x Brussels Sprout "Brilliant") and Parsley. To the right of the photo is the Asparagus bed. If you look really carefully you might be able to identify one or two spears poking up.


This wider-angle shot shows the Broad Bean bed at the right, covered with the tall netted structure. Beyond that, alongside the fence you can see the fruit trees and the Raspberry canes - already a couple of feet tall.


In the distance are the cane supports ready for the beans, hopefully going in shortly. Here they are from a different angle.


Seen above to the right of the bean-poles is this bed covered in netted hoops:


This bed has Beetroot, Parsnips and Turnips, with two rows of Radishes in between as a catch-crop. The big leafy ones are the Radishes and you have to look very closely to see the others. The germination rate of the Beetroot has been low, and I'm currently thinking about sowing some more.

Finally, there's this - the Strawberries in boxes in the foreground, and the Blueberries in pots behind, with my new Gaillardia and Rudbeckia in the square terracotta pots.


So there we are; a complete tour of the (edible) plot for you! The ornamental bits will have to wait for another day.

14 comments:

  1. It is really full and busy isn't it. Maybe what you really need is a large cage over your entire garden or a biome. I often daydream about a biome over our plot and the ability to control weather conditions a bit like Eden.

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  2. Your plot is looking fab and miles ahead of my plants. We all need a giant polytunnel in this UK climate - I definitely would love one.

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  3. Looks great. You are a real example of growing vegetables on a limited space, I mean, everything is possible where's will...

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  4. It looks lovely as usual.

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  5. I am impressed by your fine use of space and how well organized everything is. Everything looks great!

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  6. It certainly is busy in your garden now. I don't know how you manage to keep everything so neat and tidy also. My garden is a mess, although I blame some of that on its unfinished state. I really enjoyed getting to see the entire garden, it gives me a better perspective on what you have going. You must have a lot of problems with critters, I thought I did, but you've got far more "protection" going than I do!

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  7. I love your garden, is so tidy, so organized. And you have space there for almost every crop a gardener could grow. Just perfect, keep it this way! and have a nice weekend :)

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  8. An impressive and complete inventory!

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  9. Brilliant example of squeezing a lot into a small space!
    After seeing your pictures I have a question for you. How far apart are you planting your Brussels sprouts? I have a small bed (75 x 115 cm) that I was going to use, but my packet says 75 cm each way all round... What's the closest spacing you would recommend?

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    1. Hi Springleaf; Thanks for the compliment! My sprouts are 60cm apart. If you plant them close together you will usually get smaller plants than if they are widely spaced, but that suits me fine. In your 115 x 75 bed I would put two plants, if I were you.

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    2. Thank you! will follow you advice. Just have to work out where to put the others...

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  10. Thanks for the tour. Your garden is so neat and well organized. I am really impressed with your mix of beds and containers for vegetable growing.

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  11. Tu huerto es increible!!! ojala el mío se parezca algún día al tuyo. Felicidades

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    1. Muchas gracias, Monica! You are too kind.

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