Thursday, 19 May 2011

How to make a raised bed!

During my first visit to St. Mary's School I found a really great and enthusiastic crowd of teachers, eager to get a school vegetable garden up and running... they had plenty of space, plenty of willing children eager to get digging. Two weeks on, two areas of turf had been stripped and we were ready to get going!!

When I returned I brought with me.....
eight lengths of roof perlins and 40 bags for decent compost!

I discovered a few years back that the cheapest way to build a raised bed (of any significance) was to purchase two 20ft (6m) long perlins,
saw them in half and nail them together!
Voila.. a raised bed within an hour!!

Then comes the heavy work! Several bags of compost later the garden begins to take shape! The heavens opened, we all got quite wet, but we soldiered on to complete the task and finally, within two hours we were planting... and sowing seed! Wow, all in a mornings work!

I'll be back next week to plant some more, but in the meantime, the childen are going to plant an apple tree, plant some seed potatoes in old car tyres... it's all action!!

Wednesday, 4 May 2011

A Right Royal Weeding !!

It's been a wonderful bank holiday weekend for gardeners.... hours of uninterrupted sunshine and a Royal wedding to kick start the weekend!
I must confess to being a bit of a royal wedding fan, but the moment they left the balcony, my gardening shoes were on and I was off!

In the spirit of spring, these are some of the flowers in the garden at the moment. These seem a little more regal that photos of dirty gardening shoes, spades, wheelbarrows and compost which would truly represent my weekend!

It may not look like it but this is a tulip, one of my favourites!
I thought it was an interesting angle and shows off the wonderful colours and patterns.

Blossom at last.... thanks to Sam and Jon's efforts pruning back the plum and apple trees in the old orchard we have an abundance of blossom, lets hope we get an abundance of fruit to follow!

I spent most of my weekend in the vegetable patch. It really needed some quality time! The broad beans and peas were put in about three weeks ago but with little rain, germination was slow!

Eventually they poked their little heads through and here they are! Since then, I've planted out some Brussels sprouts and Ailsa Craig onions (my daughter's called Ailsa so we have to plant Ailsa Craig!)

To keep the girls happy (and for their amazing flavour and texture) I've filled a bed with Anya salad potatoes for my youngest daughter Anya!
I adore these waxy, slightly nutty flavoured potatoes and decided a few years ago not to waste valuable space on normal main crop varieties but to concentrate my efforts on these amazing little knobbly spuds!