Ready for Action

After a few false starts, Spring is definitely underway in the Agriframes garden – the birds are singing a different tune, daffodils are in full flower and buds are appearing all around. With the clocks changing, there will be more time to enjoy sowing, planting and, before too long, harvesting.

After the recent extreme weather we are wary about the likelihood of further cold snaps and trying to resist the temptation to get ahead of the unpredictable early Spring variations in temperature.

We are concentrating on preparing the soil to give plants the very best start in a few weeks time by covering the cleared raised beds with fleece and using protective cloches to warm the soil.

While early sowings are kept warm in the greenhouse, we are beginning to move some into cold frames to begin hardening off before planting out - some bubble wrap insulation will help if the night time temperatures are still dipping very low.

One thing that is worth doing at this time of year is mulching in flower borders, before the herbaceous plants begin to really break surface. A layer of organic material, whether it is compost, leaf mould or well rotted manure, will act as a soil conditioner, weed suppressant and moisture retainer - a great combination and recipe for much healthier plants!

Whatever you’re using, make sure you apply a good thick layer – 4 inches is perfect and will make a real difference in weakening the weeds – leaving a little space around the crowns of any perennials already appearing.

If you don’t compost already, make this the year you start and next Easter you could be dressing your garden with your own rich dark compost as a reward!

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