The days are starting to have a Spring in their step, even if it is a bit erratic. We are starting to reclaim the herb & vege gardens at last. The asparagus patch is looking good, some plants have  half a dozen or more spears showing. Although advice says not to pick any this year, as plants are only 2 years old, we have snaffled a few stalks as a treat. Our Cowslip plants are looking really happy, so we have harvested a few flowers, some into oil & some to dry for herb teas.

Cowslips

Our leeks are just starting to get little flower stalks in their middles, so we are eating as many as we can before they get too tough. Our favourite leek meal is ‘Leeks on Toast’ & I’ll put the recipe up in the Recipe section.

The Rhubarb is powering away, & we have weeded around it, put a load of old horse poo on & then mulched with old hay. Last year the strawberries were not happy, a mixture of wet weather & couch grass. So we have dug all the plants up, & moved their frame to a new spot. Have re-planted the runners & the youngest looking plants with good roots.

We bought some early seed potatoes, which are chitting in our garden caravan. We’re going to plants them in the remains of an old compost heap. We’ve had a few problems with our spuds the last couple of years, so we are trying something new this year.

We planted a lot of mustard as green manure crop where our tomatoes were last year. Further research has revealed that we can chop up the mustard tops & dig them into the soil, esp. where we are putting the spuds. The trick is to chop them up finely, get them into the soil straight away, then firm down & cover if possible. The cut mustard leaves release gases, a bit like eating wasabi, & the gases act to fumigate the soil, killing pathogens & disinfecting the soil. They are reported to act as a fungicide, to curb nematodes &  Potato Blight.

covering the soilDigging in cut mustardcut stalksMustard crop

Our mustard plants are just right now to harvest, as they are starting to flower. So we must get on to it soon. Once the leaves are in the soil, we leave them for 2 weeks before planting our potatoes. Got hold of a couple of bags of Agria seed potatoes today, so will set them out in trays to sprout.

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