I confess I am a hoarder of books. Cookery books have always been my weakness but since I got my allotment gardening books have become my new addiction. But they all give slightly different advice, and with so many to refer to, I thought it would be beneficial to get a list together of recommendations and must-dos for the month ahead. Some of these items are things I personally need to do, where as others are annual things that any grower should be thinking about.
ON THE PLOT:
- Cover rhubarb to force an early harvest, insulate with straw.
- Add cloches to the soil to warm it up for early sowing.
- Prune soft fruit trees.
- Add fertiliser to the fruit trees.
- Plant Raspberry canes.
- Cover strawberries to encourage early growing.
IN THE TOOL SHED:
- Clean and oil tools.
- Organise plant pots ready for March sowings.
- Organise seeds and order more.
- Plan the growing schedule for over the next year.
IN THE POLY TUNNEL/INDOORS:
- Create a path down the centre of the polytunnel using bricks.
- Add sand and compost to poly tunnel borders.
- Sow seeds in pots: tomatoes, peppers, onions, brussel sprouts, spring cabbage, lettuce.
- ‘Chit’ potatoes.
From the images you will be able to see that I have made a start on my list already. The rhubarb has some insulation added (how long that will last with the current windy weather we will see), I pruned and supported my blackcurrant bushes (remember to cut out the old when pruning blackcurrants) and my strawberries have been given a good going over and are now snuggly hidden under cover. My seeds are also underway on the window sill and I’m hoping any day now to see signs of life.
This may seem like a lot of work but it is all preparation for March when the real planting and growing begins.