New raised beds

In my first draft of a plan for the potager, I included a bed on the  south side of the garden which would be angled to continue the line created by the bread oven. Bed 9 in the sketch. It is interesting to look back on the plan to see how it has evolved, and what has changed.original_planNotice how in the final plan, everything was spaced further apart, and shortened to line up with the edge of the pigsty. This was after lots of measuring and testing with a wheelbarrow for turning widths between the boxes.  It has worked well although we did not add the small boxes in the centre (intended for teepees for runner beans) because I realised that this would create problems turning a wheelbarrow by the ash bin. We also moved the windy drier back, so that the long beds on the north side could be extended to full length. potager-plans I wanted to create a small bed specifically for strawberries, and after much dithering I decided to go back to the original plan of having a bed on the south side. But I have found that turning the lawnmower in the narrow passages (80cm) is not easy, so decided to split the box in two (bed 9 in top drawing therefore becomes bed 9 and 10) to continue the passageway between the beds.

The chief tea maker watching the progress!img_6826The finished beds.  img_6863 img_6867I was able to half fill them with my own compost. They will be topped up with manure. Really chuffed with this as making good compost has not been an easy as I expected. Getting the right combination of brown and green waste and enough moisture and heat is key.  Look how good it is! Only crazy gardeners can enthuse about the quality of compost and manure! 😀

img_6859-2
The compost was full of worms, but also lots of larvae/grubs. I’ve looked up on the web to try and find out what they are, and the consensus seems to be that they are rose chafer beetles. Really great for breaking down the compost, but not good for my roses and grapes.  But the birds love them, so whenever I find them I toss them out, hoping my friendly little robin who is generally not far away will have a feast!img_6858-2

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