Veg plot update

The rhubarb has taken off in a dramatic way so any time tested recipes will be greatly received.  I do love rhubarb crumble but that’s all I ever have made.  I made the rhubarb cake recently which was lovely so anything else anyone recommends I am happy to give a go.

There’s more asparagus ready to harvest, it’s shooting up left, right and centre and tastes divine!!

The remainder of the veg plots are coming along nicely but there are 2 which I just cringe at every time I look.  They shout “painful back, blood, sweat and tears” at me every time I look. They are going to take a lot of TLC to get up to speed but I need them up and running so let’s stop moaning and crack on.  One is going to be for the broccoli, more caulis and cabbage.  The other bed will be for squashes.  I have some started in the greenhouse and the remainder are going in this weekend. 

Tomatoes are doing well and some are flowering already!  The plant which we didn’t know what it was?  Well, I think may be a bean plant of some description, looking at how it’s coming along.  I have more tomato seeds in which are late but I will ripen them off the vine if I have to. 

Aside from these 2 veg beds there is one that only has currant bushes and rhubarb in (the one I made the cake with, yum) and nothing else, so there’s a lot of wasted soil space to me.  I have done the lasagne method with the spare space. Anyone seen it?  I put newspaper down over the weeds (didn’t bother to pull them out, will soon know if that is a bad idea) and then lots of our lovely horse manure over the top. This will compact and rot over the coming weeks when I will add another layer of newspaper, grass cuttings and manure and in a few months time we will dig the bed over in the hope for good soil and no weeds Or we’ll have some cracking weeds that thrived on the manure when the newspaper did nothing!  It’s an experiment and saved my back doing that bed
On a night when I’m locking all of the animals up, I wander round the veg plot and close up the greenhouse and my mind is already drifting to next year and what I want to start off early in the greenhouse, when can we afford a polytunnel, what should we put in each bed to rotate it etc.  I love it growing our own things.  We have so much to learn, it’s fabulous!

What a lovely day

Today I was lucky enough to be working from home.  So on my lunch hour I went outside and after tending to the horses, I weeded the next veg bed along.  The soil was lovely though clumped together in parts due to the amount of rain we have had.
Today’s “new smallholder” question is… Does anyone have one of these greenhouse temperature controls are, or know how they work?  I suppose I know how it’ll work, I just can’t find the power for the blooming thing.  The wires leave the greenhouse in the general direction of the house but where they end up is anyone’s guess.  It may not even work for all I know.  Though I would be surprised as the previous owner’s have taken good care of the place.
Another ‘what is it’?  Friend or foe of the veg plot?  I am uploading from my phone so for info it is the picture of the bug  I will have a google and find out.
Today sees the start of the fence going up.  We’ve paid for a firm to come in and do it.  It means it will be up in 3 days opposed to the 3+ weeks it would take us.  Here’s what it looked like at 7:30 this morning.  Wasn’t it a lovely bright morning.  It was only a week ago, less even, that 7:30 was still a dark hour of our morning’s here in the North East. Spring is on the way and it feels great.
Our eggs are on day 10 in the incubator today.  I can’t wait until these cuties hatch and are ready to join our 10 in Chickenville.  A while off for that yet of course. I have just realised we will have fluffy chicks for Easter!

The Veg Plot

A lot of people are asking, jokingly, if we will open a market garden.  Whilst I smile back at them and laugh along at the idea of us being able to do anything like that, I really like the idea of it.  We are hoping to sell the eggs on, for eating and fertile, the muck heap can go for free to allotments and home made bread is a hit with the family already, so the thought of growing something that people might actually like to buy isn’t too far out there. Let’s get it supplying food for our table first I can hear my husband saying!

We have a rectangular shaped veg plot, sectioned off and rabbit proofed (I presume this should state as much as possible here).  Looking from google maps you can see the veg plot on the bottom middle of the picture. 

The beds are as follows:
Central far bed.  Soil based, obviously used by previous owner as fire pit area.  We’d like to grow in it.
Onion bed before
Onion bed after

Stood at far end of veg bed looking back on row one

Bed 1 currently has roses in.  Not sure what value they have from food production point of view (for us I mean, not the previous owners)

Bed 2.  Why only half covered?  They had spare tarpaulin so wondering if there’s a reason.

Is this asparagus?

No idea what’s in here but there is some sort of frame at the far end.

Hopefully a bed ready to use this week.  We’ve not looked underneath.

Another one that should be ready to go.

Blue arches?

I think this is just weeds now.

Might weed this and leave it to see what comes up

This is where the ash was put but it hasn’t been dug in?
The only bed DH has managed to start, which is more than I’ve done, is the onion bed.  We bought some onion sets from B&M to try and popped them all.  They take up about 2/3rds of the bed I labelled.  I am going to plant some mint around it too as apparently that’s a good companion plant.  The remaining 1/2 may be potatoes, which will also have a full bed of their own.
How exciting!!!!!
The post wouldn’t be complete without the latest animal pictures.
Not interested in getting their faces on the blog

Love this photo

The new and the old, all friends.

January outdoor preparations

According to RHS website (

The coldest month

In January, your garden could need protecting from frosts, gale-force winds and heavy rain. Check stakes, ties, fleeces and other supports for damage and consider moving plants to sunnier positions to maximize light. Don’t forget to keep feeding the birds, food is scarce for them over winter. You can also start planning next year’s vegetable plot.”

So this is what I intend to do, once we move in.  I will see what the best feed for the birds is and see if there’s anything home made we can do.

I also plan on photographing and listing all plants that we have on the farm’s veg plot.  For example, I know we have rhubarb and raspberries in one of the veggie beds, along with asparagus in another.  I will create a plan showing what is what and that can help me prioritise what needs doing.

The small orchard that comes with the property has a few different fruit trees in it.  Again, I will map out what’s what as I need to think about pruning and preparing for 2016 growing season.