Costa Blanca News (South Edition)

Creation of a garden: More on planting

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By Derek Lindley

THIS week I am taking a break from the main story of how my garden developed and introducin­g the reader to some of my tips for planting vegetables.

So, there are more pictures than words. I have found in Spain, with a bit of trial and error, planting can take place in most months of the year and February to April is no exception, it’s also a lot cooler to be working outside.

I have quite a big plot dedicated to vegetables, (132 m2, or, in old money 1,404 ft2), which not everyone will have, so I have included some tips for smaller gardens, patios or balconies.

Let’s start with my vegetable garden and how I plant finer seeds like carrots, beetroot, and bigger seeds like French beans and potatoes.

A simple tip for planting fine seeds is to get the depth right. Over the years I have found using a rake, or some other long handle tool, as in the picture, is the best option. (Be careful not to tread too hard on the handle, I have broken a couple in the past!).

Using a line, I gently press in the handle, which results in a small trench and then it is a simple job to spread the seeds. You will also see I use my own ‘duck board’, which helps when the ground is soft and stops me from sinking into the soil. It also helps in keeping my boots free of soil. A simple tip, but it does work.

Similarly, with my potatoes I use a line, dig about half a spade depth, and lay the potatoes about 18 inches apart and then earth up.

This year I planted five kilos, which should give me a harvest of around 50 kilos. Last year I sowed 10 kilos, harvested 100 kilos, which was a bit too much for the two of us, and whilst they do keep, I wasted a lot! (First picture planting in February, second picture growth at the end of March, and yes this year)

Now if you want to grow any vegetables in a confined space you can use pots, here I have demonstrat­ed strawberri­es, potatoes and runner beans.

For the strawberri­es. I used a 12-inch pot half filled with fine soil, added some slow-release fertiliser and added the plant with some fresh compost. I did the same with potatoes but used a bigger 16inch pot and the same size pot for the runner beans, but with these, I also used canes because they can grow to 2-4 metres in height.

You can really plant anything in pots, or if you have enough space, create a raised seedbed, which is not too difficult.

Next time: A new patio and a shed.

COSTA NEWS, April 9-15, 2021

 ??  ?? Using a 'duck board'
Using a 'duck board'
 ??  ?? Growth at the end of March
Growth at the end of March
 ??  ?? Planting potatoes in February
Planting potatoes in February
 ??  ?? Runner beans
Runner beans
 ??  ?? The trench made with the rake
The trench made with the rake
 ??  ?? The rake
The rake
 ??  ?? Potatoes
Potatoes
 ??  ?? Strawberri­es
Strawberri­es

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