March 1, 2013 at 3:11 pm 1 comment

This weekend is our Community Garden Stakeholder Weekend so don your wellingtons and dig your beds to get them ready for Tomatoes, Runner Beans, French Beans and Sweet Corn.

Start your seeds off indoors. It’s easy to give seedlings a head start by growing them on the windowsill.

If you want to start your crops off a couple of weeks early, then cover your beds with horticultural fleece to trap in the warmth and raise the temperature of the soil.

Sow the seed in a groove made in the soil which is roughly 2cm deep.  Sow thinly to reduce the need of thinning the seedlings out later. The seedlings should appear in ten days time depending on the weather conditions.

The very best time to plant garlic is in late autumn but it will still produce a crop if planted up to early March.

Start to sow lettuce from the second half of march. Sow a few seeds each week so that they don’t all  mature at the same time otherwise you will end up with a bumper crop, too much to eat over a ten day period and then nothing at all.  You can continue to sow lettuce right up until mid August.

Mid to late March is the best time to sow onion seed. Sow thinly in rows which are 2½cm apart. Cover lightly with soil and gently water them in. The seedlings should appear in roughly three weeks.

Onion sets are far more reliable compared to onion seeds and they establish quicker.  Simply make a small hole in the soil with your fingers, put the onion set into the hole and cover round with soil so that only the very tip of the onion set is visible on the soil surface.  Water the onion sets after planting to settle them in.

Just before sowing, scatter a good handful of blood, fish and bone over the soil. Gently work it in with a trowel. Don’t apply any other fertiliser at this time and especially no manure.  Parsnip seeds take three to four weeks to germinate.  Sow the seed about 2cm deep and about 5cm apart.  If you are sowing more than one row then the rows should be 30cm apart. Cover the seeds with soil and lightly firm down.  Water if the soil is dry.  Parsnip seed should be sown over a month or so rather than all together.

Strawberries can be planted from the end of the month or early to mid-April so prepare the soil now to a spades depth and add 2 handfuls of bonemeal per square metre.  A few days before planting, apply the recommended dose of general fertiliser.  Feed the soil with liquid tomato fertiliser every two weeks during the growing season.

Don’t plant strawberries where peppers, tomatoes, aubergine and potatoes  have been grown – these plants could pass on verticillium wilt, a serious strawberry disease.

Radishes are one of the earliest vegetables to be sown. Make a shallow drill into the soil and place some seed in a row. The seed will be very fine so try not to sow too many. Cover the seeds with a small layer of soil and water them in gently.  They take four to eight weeks to mature and do not keep well in the ground so should be eaten soon after harvest.


Entry filed under: GARDENING TIPS. Tags: , .

Redesign for the front of Home Park/Sydenham Community library POCKET PARKS

1 Comment Add your own

  • 1. Anthony Scully  |  March 1, 2013 at 10:16 pm

    Dear Dee thank you so much for this kind regards Anthony



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