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I always find January an interesting month; I know the common feeling is oh God January such a long depressing month. But for some reason to me it really symbolises the start of the whole season, the days are getting that bit longer, the weather is generally bad, but that’s fine for January (incidentally not fine for July!). On the farm, despite the perception that it is a quiet month it is far from it. This is the month of planning and harvest.
So if you are planning a garden what can you be doing at home. Well, over the next few weeks I will tell you exactly what we are doing and if you can replicate that then hopefully you will have some nice crops to be tucking into over the summer and autumn.
I always start January by looking back on the year gone by. Looking at what we harvested and what was popular, this tells me what we need to improve on and what we need to grow more or less of. So armed with this information, I start planning the new seasons planting. This starts with choosing the very best varieties of seeds for our crops. This year we will be sourcing all our seeds from a company based in Dublin called Europrise (01-8438711, www.europrise.ie ) and they can also supply small quantities of organic seed to anybody, so give them a call, you will be delighted with the seed quality and you will not get many of these top varieties in the garden centre.
To give you a specific example, we want to grow loads of broccoli this year, so we look at the first possible planting date, say the 03rd Mar (by this I mean the time for transplanting into the field) so in order to have these plants ready we need to sow the seeds in modules in our tunnel on the 1st week of Feb. Therefore I need to know now what variety I want to plant and have them on order.
So there is the first little gardening tip of the year, planning is everything!
I have uploaded a new video below and this gives you a good idea of what is happening in a few of our tunnels at the moment, it is only 1min 30sec so it won’t take long! It is well worth a look. I hope you enjoy it.
Thanks again and all the best