1. seed starting
  1. raised beds
  2. composting
  3. water catchment
  1. cut and come again
  2. vertical gardening
  3. containers
  1. cover crop
  2. companion planting
  3. succession planting
  1. germination
  1. beekeeping
  2. chicken coups
  3. fish farming
  1. canning
  2. drying

shiitake - April - October

Asparagus - May June
Leeks - May - June
Garlic green - May - June

cucumber - june - aug
peas - june - aug
radish - june - oct
green onion - june to oct

beans - july - sept
broccoli - july - oct
celery - july - sept
corn - july - sept
garlic - july - sept
zucchini - july - sept

grapes - september
peanuts in sept and oct
potatoes - september to january
squash - sept - nov
plums - sept - oct

cauliflower - aug - oct
eggplant - aug - sept
leeks - aug - dec
peppers - aug - sept - chilis must be green house
ruttabaga - aug - oct
tomatoes - aug - sept

carrots - not available in june
onions - out of the ground every month but july and aug

pumpkin - october nove
sweet potato - oct - dec

A cunning Plot

  • I do most of my gardening at night. I lie in bed walking, in my imagination, around my vegetable beds, working out what I could do better.
  • When I took on my first allotment, I covered it in black plastic to kill the weeds
  • I began to discover why people couldn’t control their weeds and slugs,
  • why their beds were drying out,
  • why their soil had compacted and
  • why they were producing for only six months of the year.
  • I realised that most of the work I needed to do would take place before I planted the first seeds.
  • By clearing the ground of perennial weeds then building raised beds and putting down several tonnes of manure, I would save myself hundreds of hours of pointless labour later on.
  • Some species – such as potatoes, onions and squashes – keep their flavour for months after they’ve been picked.
  • But most begin to deteriorate immediately.
  • I’ve noticed that even half an hour after I’ve picked them, crops like sweetcorn, purple sprouting broccoli, radishes and french beans lose much of their sweetness (the vitamins start to break down as well).
  • Get yourself a digging hoe (in this country they are sold under the Spanish name, azada).
  • Everywhere else people use gravity to break the soil, bringing a hoe down onto the ground. In Britain we work against it, lifting the soil from below with a fork or spade, which doubles the work and knackers your back.
  • A good azada will dig out brambles with a single stroke and break up compacted soil very quickly.
  • If your plot is full of small perennial weeds, such as couch grass or marestail, don’t try digging them out. Cover it with damp-proof membrane for 12 or 18 months.
  • Don’t use carpet, which contains toxic flame retardants
  • Otherwise you’ll engage nature in a battle you cannot win.
  • Don’t walk on your beds and don’t manure your paths.
  • In other words, keep them separate, preferably by building raised beds.
  • Don’t grow your perennials (such as fruit bushes or rhubarb) in the same bed as your annuals.
  • They’ll harbour weeds, which will keep invading your vegetables.
  • Keep your compost heap as far from your vegetables as you can.
  • This is where the slugs and snails breed, and they will destroy everything within a radius of about ten feet.
  • Start your vegetables as early as possible, under cloches or on the windowsill.
  • They become well-established before the slugs wake up and the summer droughts start.
  • As soon as you’ve harvested one crop, sow the next.
  • There are at least 20 kinds of vegetables and salads (mostly oriental varieties) that you can grow through the British winter.
  • You should be able to eat fresh greens every day of the year.
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