Jamie Oliver

Grow your Own!

JUN 21 @ 09:54

by minerva

In these photos members from various Allotment Societies show you how a very small space can yield rather a lot.
Raised beds are the answer if you have small children, mobility problems or have a tiny space in which to make a garden.
These photos also go a long way to dispel the myth that veg gardening is ugly or difficult.
Summer veg gardening can turn into a winter bulb garden too if that's what you want. The possiblities, as they say, are endless.

The first & third photo are of the same bed from different angles, & is planted in a conventional 'row' style.
The second photo is planted in a more eccentric manner, no less productively, but perhaps a little more chaotically?

Children particularly find this way of gardening pleasing, since the soil-level is closer to their eyeline, & it's easier for them to see & understand what is going on.

For ease of gardening the beds should be between 3' & 4' wide (any length is ok) so that the middle of the bed can be reached easily without stretching.
Soil should be enriched with good compost at the beginning of the season, & more added every time a crop is harvested. This means that there are enough soil nutrients for intensive successional planting.
Although guidelines are given on seed packets regarding distance plants should be apart, it's better to grow seedlings rather closer together in this style of gardening. The trick is to use the 'thinnings' as micro veg in salads etc, being careful to not disturb the roots of those left to grow on.
Attention needs to be given to adequate watering in hot weather as anything 'raised' will be very free-draining, but on the other hand because crops are so closely spaced very little soil-surface is open to the elements. From an ecological point of view, this style of gardening also comes out tops............since you only water where you need it, when you need it.
A handily placed waterbutt collecting rainwater also provides a useful source of soft water. 

If a row of Marigolds, Chives etc are grown between the veg, aphids are also controlled without the need for spraying.

Get down to your local reclaim yard (or buy timber if you are feeling wealthy!) & pick up some planking, build your own as well as grow your own..........it's great fun & it all tastes great.

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JUN 21 @ 11:16

by Madalina_B

thumbsup thumbsup thumbsupsmilewave

JUN 21 @ 19:58

by MsPablo

Very nice and full of great advice!  Those are very healthy-looking gardens and amazing production in a tiny space.  I need a few on my rooftop where I get some sun!

JUN 22 @ 13:24

by minerva

These were only 3' x 6' (I think.....they could have been 4' x 8', but I don't think so), small enough for most people to have just one at least.

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