0
points
Can I plant anything in my new garden this year?

General    York, UK

I moved house this past Autumn and inherited a nice garden with our new house. The house has apple trees growing and there is plenty space for growing some veg. I'm a little worried as it appears I missed my chance to do any prep work in Autumn and I don't really know if I can plant anything this year. What would your advice be? I don't think the previous owner grew veg, just shrubs and flowers. My wife and I are new to all this and need as much help as we can get. Thanks.


Posted by: Johnboy (2 points) Johnboy
Posted: April 7, 2013




Answers

1
point
Check with your county and see if they give away or sell for cheaply their compost. Many communities collect the lawn scraps and compost it and make it available for their residents. Also, check out a method called "Lasagna Gardening", which is a no-till method. Use a trimmer to cut the grass down to the soil, cover that with 3 layers of newspaper, and then cover that with layers of compost and/or topsoil. Limestone and gypsum is cheap and easy to get at places like Menards or other big-box stores, those two will add calcium to your soil. There is still time to sow greens and lettuce, but they prefer cooler weather and will go to seed when it gets hot. It is also a good time to start hot weather crops inside under lights, ready to plant after the last frost date, typically around Mother's Day. If you want more help getting started, send me a message and I will be happy to answer more questions.


Posted by: Bradley Cahill (1 point) Bradley Cahill
Posted: April 7, 2013


Johnboy commented,
Thank you Bradley. It's all a bit overwhelming but we are determined to do something. I would also like to start my own compost, but all in good time!
over 11 years ago.

Bradley Cahill commented,
No problem. It was overwhelming for me at first as well, but it only takes one season to get a lot of experience.
over 11 years ago.



1
point
Mint and other herbs should do well under the tree. Mint can become invasive, so put it in a pot.

Onions are another great one. For me, that is a cool weather crop and planting time is over. However, at some latitudes, it is planting time. If you want more info on the right onions for your area, check out Dixondale Farms in TX.

For me, it's time to plant such sprawling plants as cantalope and melons. I can put in transplants. If I plant seeds now (In April), I'll estimate to harvest from about late August up to frost date. Cantalopes harvest sooner than watermelons by as much as a month.

If you've weeded before planting, and then topped the soil with fine mulch, time will improve your soil.
And you can check out 'permaculture' to learn more also.


Posted by: SJ Smith (5 points) SJ Smith
Posted: April 7, 2013


Wurgulf commented,
Hurray for a mention of permaculture!
over 11 years ago.

Johnboy commented,
Thanks SJ - wow, melon - I wish I could grow them. I would think it is too cold here. Perhaps a greenhouse at some point in the future!
over 11 years ago.



1
point
I googled and found your local newspaper has a gardening column, so that's probably a good place to start researching what to plant when in your climate. It sounds like it's still quite cold there, so it's a good time to start doing soil prep and figuring out what you'd like to grow. I agree that lasagna gardening is a good way to get started. You might also want to do some reading about apple tree care -- pruning, thinning fruit, organic pest prevention, etc.

The best thing to grow is whatever you like to eat! If I were starting out, I'd look for a good garden center nearby. "Good" means that the employees are knowledgeable and can answer your questions, and that they stock varieties that do well in your area. If there is a gardening club, or if you can find neighbors who are eager to give advice and share seedlings, even better. Though you may eventually want to start all your vegs from seed, I think it's a good idea to get a few seedlings of warm-season plants such as tomato, pepper, and eggplant/aubergine to start, if those are plants you want to grow.

When I started gardening, growing seedlings into mature plants was enough of a challenge, and I think early successes are important to encourage new gardeners to persevere. Getting from seed to seedling takes extra time, and the emerging seedlings are more vulnerable to insects, birds, and changes in weather.

Beans, peas, cucumbers, and squash/courgettes are not hard to grow from seed, but you may need a place to keep them protected from snails/slugs and possibly weather for a couple weeks or so. I still buy transplants of some of these if the garden center has varieties that are hard to find as seed. I won't even start my seed for 2-3 weeks at least.

Leafy greens such as kale, and cool season vegs such as beets, are fairly easy to grow from seed.

Depending on your climate, many herbs are perennial and drought-tolerant and can be grown among landscape plants. It's nice to be able to snip a sprig of oregano or lemon balm from the garden.


Posted by: Tanya in the Garden (128 points) Tanya in the Garden
Posted: April 8, 2013


Johnboy commented,
Wow! Great information, thanks so much. Is it the column in the Press you found? I think I found what you refer to - will need to start buying it :) I am going to look into the lasagna gardening a bitty more but I'm glad that we may be able to do something this year after all. Thanks again!
over 11 years ago.

Tanya in the Garden commented,
Yes, I found the column online. http://www.yorkpress.co.uk/leisure/ga...
over 11 years ago.



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