Friday, 10 September 2010

Damp but all right for digging.

I continued to dig today. Did about half of Dad's garden. I will try to finish it tomorrow.

Collecting worms from where ever I can find them. I will be adding these to the allotment with the brushwood and the compost that I have found.

I may well transplant some fruit trees, however I might just buy some cordon trained ones instead.

Eating Gardener's Delight tomatoes, cucumber, peppers, calabrese, onion, courgette and beetroot from the allotment tonight.

Thursday, 9 September 2010

Triple digging

I am triple digging the allotment. I have some brushwood to get rid of so I am digging a trench about three spits down and putting the hedge and tree cuttings in then covering them up again with the soil.

There are several reasons for doing this. The alternative is burning and I do not like to burn good nutrients and send them up into the atmosphere to pollute someone else's land. Taking the brushwood to the council tip means either it will be burnt or composted. Why should they have the benefits of my brushwood?
Putting the brushwood deep into the soil helps to drain the soil and keep it open. It will also raise the level of the soil and this will help with soil drainage. Nutrients locked within it will slowly be broken down and returned to the soil. Brushwood forms very good compost when it eventually breaks down. I am using a lot of mychorrhizal fungi throughout the allotment and I would like to think that they could exploit this brushwood both aiding in its breakdown and delivering the resultant nutrients to plant roots.
Before adding the brushwood, I put a layer of lawn grass mowings in to give the microbes a boost. Lawn mowings have relatively more nitrogen in them than the brushwood does. Another layer of lawn mowings goes on top of the brushwood to make a sandwich.
This has raised the level of the soil about 30 cm. and judging from last year’s triple digging the level of the soil continues to be elevated well into the second year.
Not only does the trench help to bury large amounts of brushwood, it also helps me to clear off a lot of the weeds and vegetables that have gone over. I have buried the old peas and some of the lettuce that has gone to seed. I will be also adding the chard that has gone to seed as well.
I still need to get some horse muck though Tone.