The weather has been warming up recently but of course it’s too early to count on sustained spring weather – we’re still getting frosts, after all.  I’m starting to get excited, though, and we do have everything read for April planting.   The soft fruit and empty vegetable beds have a thick layer of compost;  my husband has rolled over the cold compost heaps; and I’ve removed last year’s dead stems and stalks. 

I have also drawn up the latest rotation plan and bought in the seeds.  I’m trying an additional supplier this year – Real Seeds in Pembrokeshire.  I can’t yet vouch for the seed, but they have an excellent selection of varieties and I was most impressed with the tailored instruction sheet that came with my order. 

This will be our fifth year in this garden.  We now grow about 20 favourite vegetables and complement them with a few different extras each year.  If we like them, we’ll add them to the favourites list. 

We won’t be repeating golden beetroot or sweetcorn.  The sweetcorn plants sounded wonderful in the wind, but the cobs were patchy and we don’t like eating corn enough to give it bed-room again.  However, I am going to persist with celeriac because I really like to eat it. 

The new entrants this year are both greens from the Heritage Seed Library – Mr Hong’s Vietnamese mustard greens, and Stoke Lettuce.  I just have to ensure I water them better than my other lettuces in previous years!

In other news, the sprouting broccoli is looking healthy because the wood pigeons haven’t worked out how to broach the new cage.   Perpetual spinach and parsnips still yielding well.  Have I mentioned the salsify yet?  A new entrant from last year, it can be grown over two seasons, so we’ve yet to give it a rating.  Watch this space….

Text and Images (C) Claire @theslowfix A slow food devotee, Claire is constantly searching for new ways to enable us all to live sustainably.

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