I ordered eight bags of compost and thought that would be heaps to fill my new garden, plus help out a few others. However, I ended up using seven bags in the new garden, so will have to use the last bag very sparingly.
Yesterday I planted my Ilam Hardy seed potatoes in the new garden. The staff at the garden centre told me this variety is an all-purpose potato, which is what I wanted. We especially like mashed and roast potatoes around here, so these should be good for that.
This is the first time I've planted actual seed potatoes. I've only planted potatoes once before and that was from kitchen potatoes that had sprouted. I mustn't have dug them all up, because I kept on getting new potato plants each year and they always did well.
This time I didn't want to risk introducing a weird fungus into my lovely new garden, so splashed out on a bag of seed potatoes.
The planting advice on the bag says to dig trenches 10-15cm deep, space the potatoes 30cm apart in the trenches, and space the trenches 75cm apart. I tried following this advice, but it was taking up a lot of room so I ended up spacing the trenches more like 60cm apart. Fingers crossed they still do alright.
Even with this compact planting, half of my new garden is now dedicated to potatoes, and I've still got to fit broccoli and cabbages in there too. I'm just going to cram them in and hope for the best. I placed a cabbage tree leaf as a marker in the garden to show where the last trench is so I don't accidentally plant broccoli on top of my potatoes.
A couple of weeks back I watched this neat video by Janet from Green Urvan Living about the uses of comfrey and learned a handy tip - wrap comfrey around potatoes when you plant them and it will help fertilise them as they grow. Unfortunately I don't have any comfrey yet so wasn't able to do that, but am keeping it in mind for future years.
While I was planting my potatoes, I got to enjoy the bird-call of a Tui sitting in the next door neighbours' Kowhai tree. I LOVE Tuis. Has anyone else noticed how loud their wings sound when they fly overhead?
Other garden news
Some of my seeds are sprouting, but I think lots of them have been washed away by the heavy rain/flooding we've had over the past couple of weeks, and will need to be replanted. We have a broken gutter on our house which gushes rain water out and straight down to one of my gardens.
At one point the water was sitting 2cm above the soil, right where I had planted a whole lot of carrot, bean and leek seeds the day before.
Fortunately I planted the leeks in toilet paper rolls, so some of them seem to have survived. There's no sign of the beans or carrots though, and the soil looks pretty compacted there now so I think I'll have to turn it over again and replant.
My beetroot has finally started to take off, months after I planted it.
Snow peas are sprouting next to the beetroot, and I can't wait to throw their sweet pods into salads this summer.
|Snowpea shoot on the left.|
Some seeds in my seed raising trays have started to sprout too, although the one with my spinach and silverbeet seeds might be ruined after Lily tipped all the contents onto the ground. I'm still hoping for the best.
My new raspberry cane is starting to form fruit buds on top. I'm so looking forward to homegrown smoothies.
And that's it from me for this week.
How are your gardens looking?
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