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Thread: Getting going

  1. #1
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    Thumbs up Getting going

    Hello All

    Google has often brought me to forum posts here over the past couple of years, while I have been trying to work out what on earth I am doing with my gardening endeavours. Yesterday, I received my first ever worm bin, so I thought it was time I stepped things up a bit and actually register!

    My Mum and Grandma are both keen gardeners, so I've had a lot of exposure to gardening concepts from an early age. I've had various houseplants over the years, some more successful than others, but never had any outdoor growing space until I moved to my current home a couple of years ago. I'm very lucky to have a largely south facing garden, but it's a bit shaded in places by trees and other houses. I'm also renting, so I can't dig up the lawn for raised beds, which takes out a lot of the best growing space. Fortunately, I also have a good-sized concreted area where I can put containers, although only one corner of that gets 6 - 8 hours of sun a day. I do have a sun-room, but it gets far too hot in the summer for anything to survive in there (I know this, because I came home one day last year and everything was looking very sad, with only a few plants surviving with a change of environment and lots of TLC), and I can't leave the windows open while I'm at work.

    Last year was my first real attempt at a proper container garden and I did okay overall. I had a lot of failures, but I learned a lot from my mistakes. One of my biggest challenges is dealing with the slugs. They absolutely wiped out some of my crops (for example, not a single cabbage survived) and I'm going to have to have some better strategies for dealing with them this year. I also killed some seedling by doing silly things with fertiliser and leaving them in my too-hot sun-room for too long (bye-bye all my strawberries, cucamelons, peppers and aubergines).

    This year, I am devoting a lot of my space to greens, as I can eat a lot of those, and they worked well for me last year (chard, beetroot greens and turnip tops were all very successful for me last year - my chard is still looking good). Quite a lot of the varieties I've gone for should do okay in part-shade, so I can reserve my sunniest growing space for things that really need it. I probably have more seed varieties than space to plant them, but I think the more I learn about the plants now, the more successful I will be when I finally have a garden I can turn into a permaculture paradise

    Anyway, I'm looking forward to benefiting from the many years of shared wisdom here. Nice to meet you all.

  2. #2
    Mr Bones's Avatar
    Mr Bones is online now Early Fruiter
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    Hi SC and welcome to the Vine. It sounds like you're already getting to know what works for you. Bet you can't wait for the new season to get under way
    self-contained likes this.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr Bones View Post
    Hi SC and welcome to the Vine. It sounds like you're already getting to know what works for you. Bet you can't wait for the new season to get under way
    Wait? What's that?!

    I started getting excited a few weeks ago and have lots of seed packets scattered about. I have potatoes and oca chitting upstairs, a mushroom kit that looks like it is starting to think about doing something, my sorrel, pea-shoots, cress and mustard are all starting to sprout on my window-sill, raspberry canes and a honeyberry planted out (not expecting to get much from them in containers, but they were cheap and I thought, why not?) and my nice new wormery is set up. My rhubarb crown is starting to show some signs of life (planted last year, so I'm hoping for a small harvest from it this year), my gooseberry has been pruned, and I'm washing out containers and refreshing compost. I may also have cooked my strawberry and physalis seeds in my nice new heated propagator but I'm hoping if I move it from my hot sun-room back into my cold house, some of them may still sprout.

    I have also been watching lots of aspirational YouTube videos. I may struggle to replicate them in my little gaggle of containers, but I'll certainly have a go!

    Thank you for the welcome.

  4. #4
    nickdub is offline Early Fruiter
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    Not sure if the owner of your place would allow it, but one easy option would be some soft fruit such as blackcurrants or gooseberries planted in buckets with the bottoms cuts off resting in direct contact with soil underneath. The plants will root through and get a lot of their own water that way, after the first year, and when you come to move all you'd have to do would be chop through at ground level with a sharp spade.

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    Chris11 is offline Banned
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    Welcome s-c.

    Every season is a learning experience
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  6. #6
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    Thanks for the welcome, Chris.

    Nick, my lawn isn't in brilliant condition (despite my efforts with the moss last year), so it probably wouldn't be very damaging to sit containers on top of it. However, my landlord is a professional gardener so I am keen that when I leave, he finds the garden as close as possible to the way it was when I moved in! If I was planning to stay for several more years, I would probably broach the idea of creating extra growing space, but I'm already a year and a half longer here than I expected to be and think it's unlikely I'll still be here next summer.
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  7. #7
    nickdub is offline Early Fruiter
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    Maybe have a word with your landlord ? - he might be amenable to my suggestion if you promised to re-turf the circles involved before you left the property.
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  8. #8
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    Welcome to the vine
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