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Author Topic: what to grow  (Read 4457 times)

kingnigel

  • Joined May 2009
  • Gainsborough
  • www.zabalaz.co.uk
    • Zabalaz Siberian Huskies
what to grow
« on: March 15, 2011, 08:33:23 am »
hi all
we are going to try and grow some of our fruit and veg, so we are looking for tips on what to grow, we have an area set to one side for this its about 25 feet by 50 feet, so far we have only planted strawberrys in a 9x9 foot bed, and rhubarb which is planted in another area of the garden, so my question is what should i plant in the rest and how much should i plant, there is only two of us but any extra would go to the dogs and chickens,so too much of something wouldnt be a problem, we both like nearly all fruit and veg except for beans, i hate beans of any type.
thanks for your help.
kn

Sylvia

  • Joined Aug 2009
Re: what to grow
« Reply #1 on: March 15, 2011, 09:58:31 am »
I think the simple answer is to grow what you like eating! Also anything that costs the earth to buy. Courgettes are never cheap, nor fresh peas and sweetcorn. Perpetual spinach is a great standby and things like purple sprouting brocoli, so easy to grow yet are so expensive to buy. Happy growing :)

kingnigel

  • Joined May 2009
  • Gainsborough
  • www.zabalaz.co.uk
    • Zabalaz Siberian Huskies
Re: what to grow
« Reply #2 on: March 15, 2011, 10:35:44 am »
hy sylvia
thanks for that, its quantities and varieties that i am interested in as well.
kn

Fleecewife

  • Joined May 2010
  • South Lanarkshire
    • ScotHebs
Re: what to grow
« Reply #3 on: March 15, 2011, 12:03:19 pm »
Hi kn.  Whereabouts are you as that will govern what you can grow outside?  Also soil type, local climate eg frost pockets, high winds etc. I am in Scotland and have slowly learned which varieties of fruit and veg do well here and which I don't bother growing, or which will only crop if grown inside my polytunnel.
You could certainly fit in a row of raspberry canes which will provide enough fruit for eating fresh, freezing and to make some jam, and perhaps some brambles (blackberries) trained on a fence.
Your rows are the same length as mine - 25'.  This means that a single row of crops such as purple sprouting broccoli will be too much for two, but I plant half with psb and the rest with kale or brusssels sprouts, etc, sometimes two rows.  Similarly with roots, I would grow half the row with carrots and the rest with beetroot, but a whole row with parsnips.  For onions, garlic and shallots, I make a flat bed 4' wide and the length of a row and that provides enough of those for summer use and winter storage.  Lettuce and other salad crops can be fitted in wherever there is a space.  I grow plenty of potatoes each year, because they are so tasty fresh from the ground, I use no chemicals when growing them, and the varieties available for home growing are far more varied than you can buy, but with a limited size of veg patch you might want to grow a single row of salad potatoes and maybe a row of a variety called Mayan Gold - this is a specialist variety which makes THE MOST delicious roast potatoes ever  :yum:
It is difficult to suggest varieties without knowing where you are.  Have a look through some veg catalogues, or online and get an idea of what you might like to grow then we can pass on any knowledge we have on those varieties.
Do something today that your future self will thank you for - plant a tree

 Love your soil - it's the lifeblood of your land.

kingnigel

  • Joined May 2009
  • Gainsborough
  • www.zabalaz.co.uk
    • Zabalaz Siberian Huskies
Re: what to grow
« Reply #4 on: March 15, 2011, 12:31:50 pm »
hi fleecewife
we live in lincolnshire, the site is very exposed and the soil is supposed to be good quality growing soil, the weeds seem to like it anyway, it can be very windy.
psb, kale, onions, leeks, spuds, peas, peppers, toms, butternut squash and cucumbers are all things i want to try but i am open to suggestions. i thought 25ft rows wouldnt be enough psb. but i will try to split the rows and see how we go.
kn

Fleecewife

  • Joined May 2010
  • South Lanarkshire
    • ScotHebs
Re: what to grow
« Reply #5 on: March 15, 2011, 02:10:41 pm »
For butternut squash, the one to grow in Britain is Harrier.  The squashes are not particularly big - perfect for a couple of meals for two though and very tasty.  Various seedsmen stock them. You could start them off indoors between now and the end of March, grow them on under cover then plant them out after the date for last frost in your area.  I grew up in Norfolk and used to live in Yorkshire and from memory I would think you would be fairly safe for last frost by May - but check with other veg growers in your area.
For tomatoes - the variety you grow depends on what you like - there are so many varieties available to the home grower out there.  There are giant 'beefsteak' types, normal size such as Shirley or Moneymaker, smaller ones such as Gardener's Delight - which is an excellent choice to start with - and cherry tomatoes.  All come in a variety of colours too, from black through red to pink and yellow.  There are different vine types too, so you might get very tall ones such as Sakura (this is what I grow in my polytunnel here in the south of Scotland - they are prolific and disease resistant), bush types and trailing ones suitable for pots or hanging baskets.  They will all definitely need protection from the wind and the cold.  The one I grew outside in Yorkshire and even Edinburgh when I lived there is Gardener's Delight.  You will need to sow the seeds now, or buy young plants later, keep them under protection or indoors - making sure the plants get enough light so they don't stretch, harden them off carefully and plant them out after the last frosts.
Peppers and chillies are pretty much the same as tomatoes, although they need less water.  The cucumbers you would grow outdoors would be the ridge type and start them off much as tomatoes. I'll do another mail for other things.
Do something today that your future self will thank you for - plant a tree

 Love your soil - it's the lifeblood of your land.

doganjo

  • Joined Aug 2012
  • Clackmannanshire
  • Qui? Moi?
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Re: what to grow
« Reply #6 on: March 15, 2011, 05:36:45 pm »
What seeds can I plant in my south facing conservatory now (in Central Scotland), do I need underheating, do I need clear covers over them.  I am useless at this and usually end up with tall weak stragglers or nothing at all.
Always have been, always will be, a WYSIWYG - black is black, white is white - no grey in my life! But I'm mellowing in my old age

JD

  • Joined Nov 2008
  • Glasgow
Re: what to grow
« Reply #7 on: March 15, 2011, 06:04:13 pm »
Hi KN, you should divide your veg growing area into four allowing crop rotation. How about an apple and a pear tree. You could choose self fertile varieties thereby requiring only one of each and also choose medium rootstocks given the limited space you have.
JD

benkt

  • Joined Apr 2010
  • Cambridgeshire
    • Hempsals Community Farm
Re: what to grow
« Reply #8 on: March 15, 2011, 10:13:11 pm »
With that much space, I'd make it easier on yourself by planting a few good blocks of perennials. Raspberries and asparagus are our favourites - expensive to buy, much better fresh and don't take too much work. Both grow well for us on our fen soil so might be good choices for you.

Rosemary

  • Joined Oct 2007
  • Barry, Angus, Scotland
    • The Accidental Smallholder
Re: what to grow
« Reply #9 on: March 16, 2011, 02:40:44 pm »
I agree with benkt - definitely raspberries if you can. Look at what's grown in the fields, if anyone does field crops around you. If they can grow it commercially, you'll be able to grow it in the garden. Raised beds will allow you to pack plants in so are worth considering in the longer term. Also don't need digging once set up.

Two gooseberries and a couple of small blackcurrant bushes like Ben Sarek will give good yields and don't take up much room. Both fruits freeze well and you can make lovely cordial with the blackcurrants.

For your veggies, a four year rotation will help keep pests and diseases down. If you can do 5 beds, you can green manure one to improve fertility and soil structure.

kingnigel

  • Joined May 2009
  • Gainsborough
  • www.zabalaz.co.uk
    • Zabalaz Siberian Huskies
Re: what to grow
« Reply #10 on: March 17, 2011, 01:09:30 am »
hi fleecewife
butternut squash is a big favourite on mine, so they are a must have, so how many squashes do you get to a plant approx (im really showing my gardening ignorance arnt  i) as for toms, queen liz got her hands dirty and planted several different varieties a couple of weeks ago, shes also planted peppers and chillies, we have been advised to try market more cucumbers so they have now been planted, all in pots in the conservatory. as you have painted a picture in my mind of mayan gold roast spuds i will be on the look out for them, i will be planting spuds in buckets this year just to see how we get on with them.

hi jd
my mum and dad have just moved house and they had an apple tree a pair tree and a plum tree in large pots that they no longer wanted so guess who got them lol. they i hope can stay potted for now (not my mum and dad) as i have another area of the garden that i would like to use for them and other things but my chickens are going to move into that area first so that they can clear some of the weeds for me and also provide a little of the fertilizer. the area that i am using now is an area that the chucks have already cleared for me.

hi benkt and rosemary
an asparagus bed sounds like a good idea, i understand you have to wait a couple of years before the first harvest, is that right, also how many crowns would be sufficient for 2 people (we dont eat it a lot but probably would if we were just collecting it out of the garden). i love gooseberries so will be on the look out for a couple of them, we have blackcurrents growing in another area along with 5 other apple trees but in time i want to move those as they dont have many apples on them.

thanks for the suggestions
kn

Fleecewife

  • Joined May 2010
  • South Lanarkshire
    • ScotHebs
Re: what to grow
« Reply #11 on: March 17, 2011, 11:35:09 am »
Butternut squash - yield depends on how well grown they are but I get up to six per plant.  There is always at least one plant which doesn't do as well.  They need loads of manure and plenty of water, plus shelter from the wind but good warmth.  It can also help to hand pollinate them.
Do something today that your future self will thank you for - plant a tree

 Love your soil - it's the lifeblood of your land.

kingnigel

  • Joined May 2009
  • Gainsborough
  • www.zabalaz.co.uk
    • Zabalaz Siberian Huskies
Re: what to grow
« Reply #12 on: March 27, 2011, 11:41:39 pm »
hi
thanks fleecewife, weve got 6 planted now, cant believe how fast they grow. i have a good supply of horse manure so i hope that will do the trick when they get planted out.
kn

Beewyched

  • Joined Feb 2011
  • South Wales
    • tunkeyherd.co.uk
Re: what to grow
« Reply #13 on: March 28, 2011, 09:02:27 am »
What seeds can I plant in my south facing conservatory now (in Central Scotland), do I need underheating, do I need clear covers over them.  I am useless at this and usually end up with tall weak stragglers or nothing at all.

Hiya Annie  :wave:
We start EVERYTHING off in our conservatory - except the spuds & garlic.  Tried direct planting some of the broad beans this year, but the blasted meeces got 'em  >:(
Our conservatory is north facing - so not a huge amount of light & again we have to watch for straggly, pale shoots - had a lot of 'em last year!  No heating, apart from the standard radiator on the wall (when we can afford to run the oil central heating!) & we are in & out all day.  We've tried the "light box" method (foil to reflect the light) without much benefit, so bought a cheap "growhouse" from B&Q for 19.99.  Have it at the front of the house so it gets any sun all day, but have had to anchor it down LOTS (you know what the wind's like up here!).  We move the seedlings out to the growhouse as soon as they get their 2nd leaves.  Usually keep it closed all day, unless it's really sunny with no wind (not often!).
Have got the raised beds weeded & netted-up ready, but won't be planting-out for a while yet - got caught by the frosts last year  ::)
Tunkey Herd - registered Kune Kune & rare breed poultry - www.tunkeyherdkunekune.com

 

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