January Jobs

Post storm, at the beginning of January, my garden looked like this – the greenhouse had been tumbled over to the other side of the garden (amazed that it didn’t end up next door, to be honest), there were still a lot of random veg and ornamentals still growing and bits of debris all over.

I decided it was time to get my garden ready for the year ahead.  I seem to be starting a little earlier each year, though this year I could say that I never stopped – I have mibuna, mustard greens, straggly pak choi and a few larger brassicas of unknown type still scattered around the garden.  There’s also some spring onions, thyme and a few ornamentals which survived what has, so far, been a mild winter.  Unfortunately the mildness of the weather has also meant that weeds are popping their heads up rather early so I’ve been taking advantage any sunny days to get out my hoe.

I’ve also been grabbing the spade (as I have, sadly, no shovel) – making a start on my efforts to double the width of my main veg bed.  I’ve been using a narrow strip since I first cultivated that part of the garden and I want to move to a much wider bed – making use of the part of the garden which, on first look, seemed too shady for much but I have since realised that it would be a great spot for some of the more heat sensitive plants during summer.   It’d also allow me to have a lot more veg in, and given my burgeoning seed collection this is probably a good thing!

 

As you can see, I’ve added a path behind the graveled area – so I can actually get into the veg from the other side – though I also plan to leave small paths horizontally  to allow for easier access to each section.  I could only get about 3/4 of the gravel up as I only had enough old compost bags to put the overflow in.  Once those have been taken for recycling, I’ll make a start on the rest and hopefully get some chicken manure down to help the soil.  If it’s anything like the rest of the soil was when first dug up it should be pretty nice.

As well as the overwintered greens, I also had some other winter-sown seeds / bulbs in.

The garlic has gotten off to a slow start, though I’m glad it came up at all as I had invested my whole (small) garlic crop last year in replanting.  The broad beans are only barely making it through – they were badly attacked by slugs when they first came up as it was such a warm, damp winter they didn’t give up until well into November!  I’m going to replant more, for a later crop, but I am hoping a few pull through for some earlier plants.

I’ve also sown the first of this year’s seed:

Three types of sweetpeas.  Unfortunately this lot actually ended up on the floor in another high-wind accident with the greenhouse, but I potted up some more afterwards of the same type ;)  I also have some aubergines and hollyhocks indoors… which germinated in two days!  I had expected them to take a good while longer.

The first of many autumn planted bulbs are beginning to show now, too.  The tulips, daffies and crocus are only leafy bundles, as yet, but this wee snowdrop was raring to go!  Hopefully it’ll be joined by others in the coming weeks.

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