Gardening

Garden March 2021

I’ve just read through February/March’s post for last year and looking back I think we may be doing better than we were this time last year.

The potatoes aren’t in yet, but we planted too soon last year and the mesh tubs we used dried out far too quickly. Same with the seeds, we’re mainly using windowsills this year as the greenhouse wasn’t warm enough. We’ve learnt “more haste less speed” definitely applies in the garden.

On the plus side, I’ve been able to get out and get the long border, quarter circle and herb circle weeded. I’ve even started lifting the edging of the long border to remove the bluebells growing through it and into the path. I love bluebells but they’re at risk of taking over the garden and there are patches intertwined with couch grass.

The collection of large rocks and odd shaped bits of metal is steady increasing, I’m putting the rocks to since side for when I start on the alpines. We have a collection in the front garden but they’re still in individual pots as I’ve not got a planter set up for them.

We have a much better section of bulbs this year, I went a bit mad with a Parkers order, but Mum has been sending me some (other people get care packages, I get plants 😊) and then there’s a couple of pots with mixed random bulbs that I got the previous year but forgot to label.

The front border still needs work, last year’s pruning has reinvigorated the roses and I’ve added a few perennials but everything is still swamped by bluebells. I like bluebells but I want a bit more variety and right now I hit bulbs every time I put a fork into the soil.

The next job is getting the left hand section of the veg patch ready for potatoes. It’s the only section with couch grass growing so I want to get as much as that out before they go in.

Will start planting short “horizontal” rows of first earlier closest to the lawn and work back from there. We had a problem last year with wire worm and I’ve read they are more prevalent under turf so I want us to be harvesting the closest to the lawn first. We did it the other way last year.

The right hand section has 3 rows of onions, red onions and shallots which were planted in autumn. I might try to squeeze some carrots in between, I read doing that confuses both onion & carrot fly. We also have some garlic in tubs, they’re behind the raspberries in the long border at the moment so they get sun.

The 3 black tubs at the back also contain carrots, once I get to the stage when I’m harvesting I’ll get them raised up, as again I’ve read carrot fly can’t go higher than 2 ft. Next to them are our fruit trees; 3 apples, a pear, a plum and a cherry, not sure where they will spend the summer but I thought getting them as much sun as possible would give them a good start this spring.

The other main job for the moment is sorting out the side of the garage. There’s a lot of rubble near the gate, I’m going to move it alongside the garage building and then raise the soil level when I lift turf from the lawn to make a shady border. The stones should give drainage from any overspill when we get the water butt connected to the downpipe.

I need to move the compost bins slightly to the left to make space for the water butt, so I guess I’ll be emptying them and sorting out the compost soon.

There’s already ferns and bluebells in this border which I’ll leave in place, it looks really lush when the ferns are grown. I’ve also transplanted some bluebells to the “wild bit” on the other side of the garage. I’ve some wood anemones to go in there too but I’m letting them get going in a pot to start off with.

I feel a lot more confident this spring, there is different tempo to growing in west coast Scotland to the east coast England and I think I might be getting there.