2019: Planning Ahead

19 JUNE 2018

Now that things are slowing down in the garden, I can start planning for 2019, and hopefully make an early start on sowing my first seeds to they are ready to plant out at the first sign of sustained warmer weather next Spring.

2018 was my first year and I didn’t start early enough, what with builders, weather, and the rubble left behind by the builders (sacks and sacks of it ), so 2019 will be my first full year.

These are my plans so far.  If you want to know how I finally managed to bring my Excel spreadsheets into this post, I published it here.

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Raised bed A (above) receives sun most of the day, with just the back section shaded from the early morning sun by the boundary wall.  This bed measures 70 inches from one side to the other, 58 inches from front to back and is approximately 20 inches deep.  The pale strip along the bottom of the plan is where I have planted my garlic.  The green strip along the side is where I will plant beans and peas to climb up the arch that spans the gap between A and B (as shown below).

Raised bed B (below) is partially shaded from the sun until mid to late afternoon (depending on the time of year).  This bed measures 66 inches x 59 inches x 20 inches.  Next year I have decided to grow my salad leaves along the front of this bed, with the coloured leaves in the shadier section.  Again, peas and beans will climb the arch; I didn’t have any on this side in 2018.

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Raised Bed A is one the left, Raised Bed B is on the right in these images taken on 19th April at one o’clock.  East is top left the sun is coming from the south, which I have tried to replicate on my plans.

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In 2018, I divided each bed into nine sections, using old roofing battens from a trellis to separate them.  But as I planted a different vegetable in each square, I found it difficult to keep track of them and never managed staggered planting/sowing except for the climbing beans.

In 2019, I intend to manage each section in a different way, by combining vegetables that like similar conditions and have similar growing patterns in one section (two or three varieties).  I will make a point of planting up the next section, with the same seeds/plants within a reasonable time – which means I will have to stagger any seed sowing in the greenhouse too.

So my final plan could look something like this – taking in approximate height of plants = tallest at the back, shortest towards the front – and always subject to change depending on which seeds are available, which vegetable plants need ‘rescuing’ from the garden centre sale shelf, or if my brother has a surplus of seedlings.

Staggered Planting Example

And, of course, I’ll be making use of tubs, hanging baskets and anything else large enough to give decent space for growth.  I’ll definitely grow more varieties of potatoes, spreading their planting throughout the season.

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