Saturday, 14 July 2012

tippin' oot the tattie barra

as they say up north.

The centre display of my back lawn, the wheelbarrow with potato plants, has yielded up its bounty.

The five plants (Novella) gave just under 4kg or 8.5 lbs of decent tubers. Not a great yield but hardly surprising given the appalling weather this year.

After re-charging the compost with a scoop of chicken manure pellets and some BFB it is now home to five cabbage plants. These are 'Golden Acre', a compact fast-maturing variety that should be finished in time for me to get some winter lettuce in. That's three crops from the same patch of ground.

Small space gardening forces you to be inventive and to maximize whatever area you have at your disposal, especially if the intention is to feed your family. I've said before that the ideal of the self-sufficient gardener is to get at least one pound of food for each square foot under cultivation. Given that the cabbages will come in at one or two pounds per head depending on when I harvest them I could easily be looking at 15-20 pounds of food from this barrow which has a surface area of three square feet.

One thing that seems to be enjoying the cool, wet conditions is bush fruit. I picked two pounds of blackcurrants from one of the bushes today and hardly made a dent in the crop.

The gooseberries are all picked and yields have been the equal of any other year. Also, for the first time, I've got some blueberries. The big problem here is that although you could probably survive for quite a while on jam and fruit smoothies I'm not sure I'd really want to!

1 comment:

  1. That's interesting Colin. When i grew new potatoes a couple of years back, i grew them in the plastic recycling tubs. I did wonder about growing leeks in the compost after harvesting the potatoes. I never tried it but will be giving it a go next year.