Made a start on the soft fruit garden over the weekend
Firstly apologies for not posting for a while but it’s a really busy time at Blackbirds. We have a few projects on the go at the moment, one of which is the Soft Fruit Garden.
What a fantastic weekend! I managed to clear the last of the rubbish from the bottom of our plot and made a start on the second phase of the kitchen garden.
We’re now approaching our third season at Blackbirds and we have some fun projects lined up for the summer. Ruby and the rest of the girls (our 6 free range chickens) have been moved to a new spot so we can finish off the kitchen garden, although I have to say they seem to spend more time exploring the surrounding fields than anything else.
I’ve decided to divide the left side of the kitchen garden in half, with the front half dedicated to fruit, and the other half for a modest back garden nursery for growing and selling a few plants. It’s an idea I’ve been working on for a while now, but it’s not happening quite as quickly as I’d hoped.
I spent most of the weekend preparing the fruit patch, marking out a couple of beds approximately 20ft long by 5ft wide. I tend to make my fruit and veg beds fairly narrow to make them easier to manage.
Having first removed the turfs, I forked over the ground mixing in a good helping of compost, along with a few handfuls of fish blood and bone. This should help get the seeds and plants off to a good start and as there has been nothing but grass growing before, the soil should be in pretty good shape.
My lovely son James helping me out with the heavy digging.
I plan to move my raspberry canes that I’ve had since we moved in, but I’m not sure if they will provide any fruit this year if I do? Alongside the raspberries I’m going to plant a couple of red currants and blackcurrant bushes, along with a gooseberry and blueberry bush that I was given as a birthday present. After planting them I’ll add a dressing of potash as I’ve read that fruit bushes respond well to a dose of potash.
I might also plant a few strawberries, but I tend to find they do so much better in the polytunnel. On the subject of the polytunnel John has agreed to install a small solar photovoltaic panel on the roof of my potting shed just powerful enough to provide electricity to power a couple of lights. That way I’ll be able to stretch the days out a little further and spend even more time in the garden 🙂
Id like to grow a few more exotic fruits but I don’t have much experience with them, so if you can think of any that will grow in our Hampshire climate do let me know.