So the start of the year has started of quite wet and has really cut down the amount of time one can spend working in the garden. However this past week has been dry enough and gave me a chance to get the grass cut which really opened up the place again and made it look half respectable. And so with the first cut came the want to get back out and start to prepare the ground for this years growing.
|Beds looking rough and over grown|
|Tidying the edges|
I hadn't reaslised how over grown the beds had got over winter as it was very mild compared to recent years and because my regular maintenance of the garden in the latter part of last year was very limited due to the wash-out weather.
I had plans this year to section off all the ground level beds with 7x1 timber as it makes it a lot easier to cut the lawn around them and prevents the grass and weeds from creeping into the bed edges but being honest I just can't afford it at the moment so I will just make do with re-shaping the bed outlines and keeping them as neat as possible until next year. Just because something is out of your reach financially doesn't mean you should forget about it, just thing of an alternative and plough on... in this case, literally!
|Strawberry bed getting a makeover|
|A welcomed guest in ant veg garden|
|All the strawberry plants dug out, some planted in tubs, the rest to|
re-plant and give away.
Ciara got stuck into the strawberry bed as it had become totally over grown. We had stripped it back last year removing about 30 runners leaving 10 plants in, this time around Ciara removed over 50. We are going to move some to a new bed and the rest will be given away in Crop Share to family and neighbours to plant out themselves and have a fresh supply of strawberries this year.
My raspberries had started to spread too and the roots went right into one of my beds and started to shoot there so I carefully dug out the new canes and will also give them away. As long as you keep control of the spread, strawberries and raspberries are wonderful to grow, you can start off with just a few plants and then reap the benefit of root spread and runners.
|Spare raspberry canes dug out to re-plant elsewhere|
|Bed re-shaped and dug over|
|2 down, 4 to go!|
The best way to ensure straight lines when digging is to use garden line on a reel or a length of timber and just keep an eye on the measurements to make sure you keep it square or rectangle, sometimes running your eye along it might not be enough, and the phrase 'Should have went to Specsavers' may pop up!
|Using a length of timber to ensure straight lines.|
Well it was only a start, still plenty more to be done but it is enjoyable work and is very rewarding in a number of ways.