The Land Rover Owners Wife

Gardening Club: Raised beds and Courtyard Planters

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The Courtyard fig tree has a fig growing on it

The Courtyard fig tree has a fig growing on it

With the weather generally warmer, although still cooler than I would expect at this time of year, the Gardening Club children and I have been playing  catch up at school. With dozens of plants still waiting to be moved from the polytunnel to their final outside placings, it has been a hectic couple of weeks but I do believe we are finally on the homeward straight.

The biggest task to hand was to get the brassicas planted out and we now have Cabbages, Kohl Rabi, a couple of Cauliflowers and some Kale, in the deep, square bed, covered with Wondermesh but with a space left for the ‘Croccolis’ (Romanesca Broccoli) which aren’t quite big enough to go out as yet. There are a few cabbage and Kohl Rabi seedlings left over but we hope some of the parents may be able to find homes for these in due course.

brassicas  brassicas  brassicas under netting

All but two of the sweetcorn have now joined the courgettes and pumpkins in one of the shallow raised beds, with runner beans and a winter squash in place in another. We have also managed to plant another half dozen of the potatoes amongst the broad beans.

Sweetcorn, courgettes and pumpkins

Sweetcorn, courgettes and pumpkins

Interspersed with all the planting has been a fair amount of weeding, not the favoured task of the young gardeners but one which they now realise needs to be done on a regular basis. Plant something, weed a bed, is becoming an almost unspoken rule but this way, I hope, the weeds won’t get out of hand. The next task will be to remove the netting from one bed at a time, so that we can weed and thin out as necessary, before recovering.

We also got the rest of the courtyard crates filled, sowing carrot seeds in one, and planting strawberries and a winter squash seedling in the other two. Farm peas seedlings grown from seed donated by a local farmer, have been planted out into the courtyard raised bed and one of it’s trough planters. We haven’t supported the plants, so that we can mimic more accurately how these would grow in the fields and see how they differ to the purple podded peas which have been planted into another of the troughs and will be trained to grow up the trellis work.

The peas were in and the tomatoes were planted later

The peas were in and the tomatoes were planted later

Four of the cherry tomato seedlings, have also been planted into the courtyard raised bed, against a very small wigwam with a few more Runner beans, some Rattlesnake Pole beans and a Moneymaker Tomato plant taking up virtually the rest of the growing space in the remaining troughs.

Rattlesnake Pole Beans and some of the Farm Peas

Rattlesnake Pole Beans and some of the Farm Peas

With so much stuff cleared from the polytunnel, we now have the room to sow a load more lettuces, peas and beans to ensure a continuous crop over the next few months.

As I said, it has been quite a hectic couple of weeks but the end results will be worth it.


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