It’s time to invite our Organic Gnome to share his gardening wisdom for the winter season
Well winter again! wild, wet and windy [so we don’t feel much like gardening!] However, we can ASSESS this last year’s performance: what did best and worst? Can we work out why that might have been [chat to your chums to see how their crops fared] What could we do differently for a better outcome?
BEGIN to PLAN for next year
CLEAR beds, spread COMPOST or last years rotted leaves on bare soil [no the winter rains won’t wash the goodness out and it will protect and nourish the soil]; CUT back anything overgrown; PRUNE fruit trees [not plums or cherries and their relations] and bushes, and any shrubs that don’t flower until after mid-summer [you have all winter to complete these tasks so no rush]; PLANT new trees, bushes and hedges.
Put out food and water for birds; leave an area of untidiness for overwintering creatures; [check bonfire heaps for hibernating hedgehogs]; gather autumn leaves while damp, stack or put in an old compost bag for a year
Resolutions for next year!
- Put all plants that need regular picking in an easy to reach place! e.g. calabrese, courgettes, beans and peas, salads, flowers for cutting
- Do successional sowings of quick stuff like lettuce, French beans, radish
- Don’t get swamped by sowing too much stuff all at once that needs potting on and planting out
- Get the beds ready in plenty of time and know where everything will go
- Make even more compost, sow more green manure, don’t leave soil bare over winter; keep off wet or frosty soil.
- Keep on top of the weeds by regular hoeing
- Start more things in modules to outwit molluscs
- DON’T PANIC