Tuesday, 29 September 2015

Gardening - Lessons Learnt for next year

I haven't had as much time this summer to devote to my the veg patch as I would have liked due to extra-curricular work activities, so I think it has not reached it's potential.  We have certainly learnt our lessons for next year though:

1/  Cover the veg patch with enviromesh.  We lost all of the kale and the broccoli so a very large family of caterpillars.  They demolished the patch in just a few short days.  This is how the patch looked at the end of July:

Days later, they were just skeletons of plants.  I was too saddened to take a photo of the destruction!

2/ Plant much more lettuce (as we couldn't keep up with demand at all this year), and protect from slugs.

3/ Make sure mange tout and peas are appropriately supported.  The eagle eyed among you will notice the leeks have been dibbed out where the mange tout and peas used to live.  The packet on the mange tout and peas said to plant at 2.5-5cm spacing.  Thinking not all of them would germinate, we went for 2.5cm, with the rows slightly closer together than the packet said.  Only for every single one to germinate!  They were closely packed and not particularly well supported.  By the time we realised just how much support they needed, it was too late, and too hard to retrospectively fit, so we propped up the masses with canes.  After a midly windy day, they all just fell over and snapped at the base - destroying nearly all the plants.  A sad day, but lesson certainly learnt.  We still just had about enough time in the season to plant a few more mange tout (in a pot, in front of some trellis for support!), and we have literally just had the first meal from these this week.

4/ Pick runner beans regularly whilst young.  Otherwise they just get too coarse.

And lastly,

5/ Raspberries taste great from the garden!

What lessons have you learnt or tips have you got about growing fruit and vegetables?

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