After a weekend hunkering down to avoid Storm Ciara, I eagerly awaited today as the one day of the week with a bit of sunshine! Having been swatting up reading veg gardening books, and watching Charles Dowding, Liz Zorab and Huw Richards on you tube I felt suitably inspired and motivated to get out into the garden and start tidying up and preparing for the new growing season!
I have a love hate relationship with my greenhouse. I love that I have one, I hate that it's so old, broken, and full of weeds! I must admit I did spend some time longingly looking at poly tunnels last night, but reminded myself that i have a greenhouse already, and really don't need to spend hundreds of pounds on a poly tunnel! so cleaning out and organising the greenhouse it is!
This year I have promised myself to keep on top of the greenhouse, and make sure it is not left in quite such a state over the Winter again. I may even try and make a bed on the left hand side, and keep some lettuces and any other salad crop I can, overwinter in here - worth a try!
I also had a go at organising the compost bins we had created last year. We made two bins side by side with a few pallets we had lying around. One side I had been filling with kitchen scraps like peelings, coffee grounds, paper, card, etc. as well as weeds, and garden waste, and the occasional barrow full of pig and goat manure from their stables. On the left hand side we had been adding the grass cuttings from the lawn, but both bins were kind of bing mixed up and neither were filling up to a point where we could leave one to begin the composting down properly stage! So I turned all of the primarily grass cutting bin into the mixed bin, added a cardboard lid and tyre, and have left it in the hope it will be lovely compost in a few months! Mark also added a plastic sheet over it because it was very wet (we have had pretty much non stop rain all Winter, or so it feels like!).
What I am sowing in February
I had a lovely gift of seeds from my sister for Christmas this year, and Oscar got a set too, of child friendly seeds to grow, so we are pretty well set up for the growing season! However, I am never one to pass up a trip to the garden centre, and when my friend suggested we go, I went along for a few seeds trays and some seed potatoes, but ended up buying more seed packets too, of course!
Charles Dowding recommends starting off your sowing around Valentine's day - which is a nice marker in the calendar, and definitely something to look forward to throughout the grim January and early Feb months! this minth it was very cold and wet though, plus i had the rather daunting task of clearing the greenhouse and getting organised first. So, on the 25th, I eventually got started with my sowings :)
- Pea - Alderman, for shoots - sowed into a small tray, and left to germinate on south facing windowsill in the farmhouse
- Mustards - small tray on windowsill
- Broad beans - 6 x loo roll inners, on windowsill
- Cayenne pepper - 3 seeds in ceramic pots in the kitchen windowsill