The veggie patch

There has been lots of activity down on the veggie patch too.  The mypex that was laid last year to kill the grasses and perennial weeds and make way for new beds has slowly begun to reveal lush soil.

I’ve planned to make the veggie patch a rustic haven.  I’ve dreamt of low hazel hurdles edging the beds and tall teepees wrapped in sweetpeas. So, I finally managed to enlist the help of Mr Bumbleandme to coppice some Hazel from around the field.  He chopped some stakes and helped me drive them into the newly marked beds and provided me with an abundance of Hazel sticks to weave my hurdle borders.

not too shabby
a birds eye view

We’ve completed two beds so far and plan to build another two. The top bed, pictured above is a herb garden.The poultry have provided a lovely mulch for these beds. The bear paths will one day be covered in either wood chip or gravel, I’m not sure yet.

all planted up
sweetpeas will soon be growing up the arch, and perpetual spinach is under the cloche
hopefully a chicken proof herb garden

The polytunnel has had some staging put in that attaches to the frame. I have struggled this year with germinating seeds, but I think that’s because I’ve not stored my seeds properly and the drastic changes in temperatures in a polytunnel have probably ruined a lot of them. Lesson learnt for next year! I have managed to germinate some sweetcorn, tomatoes, courgettes, peas, leeks, lettuce and spinach, but not as many as I would have liked. I’m trying again before I resort to buying them in as plugs.  I’m also growing potatoes and carrots in the polytunnel this year, both are doing well. Im trying out strawberries in hanging baskets in there too, to see if they fruit earlier than the outdoor plants.  Although they flowered before the outdoor plants, the outdoor ones are catching up, so I’m not sure my little experiment will work, but we’ll wait and see. 

The foxgloves, hollyhock, sweetpeas and ammi majus have all over wintered well, and I’ve recently germinated some poppies, gypsophilla and nasturtiums.  These will adorn the rustic veggie patch, attracting beneficial insects.

My purple sprouting brocilli are almost ready, which is very exciting as I’ve not grown it before. The outdoor onions were eaten by the mice, so I’ve grown some in the polytunnel which are coming along nicely.  All in all, it’s been quite productive and fingers crossed it continues into the summer months. 

I still plan to build some new compost bins (one can never have too many compost bins), and make my outdoor potting bench area a bit more attractive.  

Have a lovely bank holiday everyone.

Spring definitely has a bounce in its step

We’ve had some ewes and lambs grazing the paddock for a couple of weeks now. The lambs are adorable, and spend most of the time bouncing around the field, generally enjoying life.  Here are a few photos of them and some other springlike scenes. 

Elsewhere there are signs of Spring too…

blackthorn blossom
bluebells in the wood
bleeding heart
white snowdrops
wild garlic
the first geranium flower