I am pleased to announce that the vege garden has things in it. And not just soil. It is like gardening in slow motion at the moment but my motto has become ‘Better late than never’. It has taken me a week to get four trenches of potatoes dug and planted. Thankfully, that is the most strenuous of the vege plantings done and dusted. I have also planted the spring onions that I rescued and trimmed last weekend. They had already put on a decent amount of growth sitting in water in the kitchen. Their planting formation looks a bit odd but it is all part of my great vege plan.
In devising my vege plan I have been consulting two books: The New Self-sufficient Gardener by John Seymour and Jackie French’s Guide to Companion Planting. Jackie French is teaching me about what crops work well together, how to position crops and what flowers are beneficial. I haven’t finished fitting flowers into my vege garden plan yet. John Seymour has enlightened me about the deep-bed method, with which you can get four times as much production as from a conventional bed. The main points about the deep-bed method are double-digging the soil to loosen it, never standing on the bed to avoid compacting the soil, which is good for both the plants and soil organisms, and the ability to plant crops with closer spacing.
I was going to get The Husband to double-dig the raised vege bed, but since we’ve just filled it to a spade’s depth and not walked on it (thank you for listening, dear Husband), it didn’t really need digging. I forked around some of it to mix the poop and compost layers then decided the worms could do the rest. I have spaced crops in my vege plan according to the deep-bed spacings suggested in the book. Yes, the vege plan is to scale and yes, I have a tape measure and I’m not ashamed of how much I use it! Well, maybe a little ashamed when I wonder if the neighbour is watching me… It’s just the ‘taters that don’t quite have enough space because I want to fit so very many things in this bed. But next year I intend to have two big raised beds to work with. Inevitably, I will just find more things I want to grow and then I’ll need another bed and on and on it will go like a vicious cycle.
Anyway, let’s get off that train. The next things I plant will be the tomatoes, capsicums and chillies. I (we) just have to re-assemble some of the bamboo tee-pees for the tomatoes… Some of the remaining crops I will sow directly into the bed, like carrots, spinach and bok choy. The rest I have sown seeds for. I have been a busy little sower in the last couple of weeks. It’s just going to be a while before things are big enough to plant out. But better late than never, right?