Re-plan and re-plant

On the one hand the plot is looking tidy and ordered; nice raised beds, paths mulched and looking good. There’s just one big problem with this and it’s STRAIGHT LINES! I don’t do straight lines and order and neither does nature! I want my plants to roam a bit and seed where the fancy takes them, I want to have wavy edges and sinuous lines, vegetables overlapping with fruit and flowers, room for a pond and somewhere to sit. The boards must go and the paths too. In will go fertility builders like comfrey and clover, space for compost making, herbs like lavender, marjoram and mint, lots of annuals sown around like nigella and marigolds, nasturtiums and poached egg plants, phacelia for the bees and sunflowers too. Willow weaving will begin once Christmas is over…fedge and archway, arbour and seat.

The boards have to go!

The boards have to go!

 

Californian poppy

Californian poppy

all singing together!

all singing together!

Marigolds

Marigolds

Borage

Borage




New plot, no dig!

Grazing rye green manure

Grazing rye green manure

No dig for me was not a hard decision to make, the soil is free draining, friable and in good nick so why interfere? Mulch, mulch and green manure is my plan even though there are ample supplies of animal manure all around as I’m surrounded by livestock farming.

I’ve decided to follow Garden Organic ‘best practice’ guidelines to manage the soil with natural fertility builders and to make friends with the soil instead of fighting it with spades and forks! So no winter digging for me, sit back and watch the green manures grow I say!

Pics below are from last spring, April/May 2014

Straw on the beds, cardboard on the paths

Straw on the beds, cardboard on the paths

Lovely mustard green manure

Lovely mustard green manure

growing nicely!

growing nicely!

New Beginnings

 

Well, no posts since 2012 and mainly because we moved! I left my lovely garden in Mapperley, 17 years in the making, but now I’ve found new ground to develop up in the Derbyshire Dales. Two half allotment plots and a little cottage garden will keep me happy for at least another 17 years! So first the allotments…

P1100731At least the soil has been covered to discourage weed growth and although it looked unpromising in early April, I peeled back the layers and found the soil in good heart, a sandy loam that has proved to be a joy compared to the heavy brick clay of Nottingham! I now am able to prepare the mythical ‘fine tilth’ so often described in gardening books and quite impossible to do on lumpy sticky clay! First planting, some Claytonia and wild rocket that had been confined to a container for the winter, happy to be released and ready for picking.

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Claytonia, a lovely winter salad leaf.
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Views from this site are stunning, plenty of time to spend leaning on the spade and admiring the landscape!