Bed preparation and fresh herbal tea
One of those fun days where we gather as a group, forks ready, kneeling on the ground, chatting and clearing beds, giving the vegetables room to grow and preparation for the next lot of planting.
This area of the Project had been quite neglected for the last few weeks and as the sunshine was appearing her face more, then weeds started to grow very quickly.
This image to the right actually has vegetables growing it, yes it might be hard to see at first! There are small broad beans plants here in amongst the weeds and grass that has so happily popped up.
A job like this can seem a bit daunting at first, especially for new volunteers and it may not be obvious which plants are to saved and which are the weeds, this is why working as a team effort here works out so well, as we can all share advice and the task can be complete quite quickly as a group.
🌱 HANDY HINT:
"Loosening the ground & roots of the weed patch with a large fork first helps when pulling up the weeds, to remove as much of roots below."
The left image below is the after picture, showing some very tidy vegetable beds, with the wood chips between each bed for easy access to each side, be aware not to create your beds too wide, as you risk not being able to reach the middle and might accidentally lean on growing plants when try to tidy up or clear future weeds.
The right image below shows the use of a large fork to loosen up the ground and roots when weeding, doing this first helps when pulling the weeds afterwards as you want to try remove as much of the root system below as you can, simply pulling the weed from the top, it might simply snap of, which would lead to it growing back very quickly.
Left image below can be seen as a large square bed with raised rows within it, this is the potato bed, as the potatoes grow, the soil is mounded up over them, which pushes them to put on more growth, sprout more potatoes form the roots below and grow further upwards, which is exactly we we want when hoping for a large potato harvest later on in the year!
Fresh herbal tea is a wonderful luxury as an afternoon break when working out in the garden, image above right shows a selection of herbs, two of my favourites being lemon verbena and mint, mixed together in a large pot. As we are still being Covid cautious on site, all members bring their own mugs and cups to enjoy together the delicious pot of fresh tea.
Thanks for reading, if you have any community gardening stories or experiences, we would love to hear from you!