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End of January to end of february 2012 EUROPE

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End of January to end of february 2012 EUROPE

Post  plantoid on 1/31/2012, 4:00 pm

“ All New Square Foot Gardening " , ( ANSFG ) from end of January to end of February in South Wales Great Britain .

Now the new cycle has started in earnest , days are stretching to 15 minutes & 25 seconds or so more light each week till the 21 st JUNE .
Due to the massive area that Europe now is some of you may find you’re better following the American planting zones referred to on the ANSFG site recommendations for what to plant and when in your areas.

Even up & down the UK we see a variation of as much as four or five weeks for the same crop EG. Crops being planted/ sown in the South down in Cornwall at the end of Feb to being recommended to sow at the end of March up in the Scottish isles.
Nottingham appears to be the median line for sowings & planting dates used by the British seed merchants .
You may have to find out what it is for your own country by looking at the seed packets and making an educated guess.

On the compost front I’ve just taken delivery of four more new Dalek conical composter bins today , come rain snow or shine tomorrow I’ll be putting them in their allotted place and start making up a six or seven different manure to compost for the next few months of gardening .
Luckily I’ve a couple of ton of the various types bagged up ready to use in the composters & for the future have managed to secure a frequent supply of straw , shavings or wood pulp based range of various animal & bird manures for composting .
I’ve also got a wormery on the go and last time I looked a few days ago it seemed OK .

All vacant parts have been turned over to get them breathing again after a couple of months inactivity , five way compost has been placed in squares where some early greedy feeder crops such as a couple of summer cabbage, & several Brussels sprouts will be planted out at the end of the third week March . At this opportunity of having lots of empty space in the beds I’ve also removed any tiny weed roots just in case they are windblown perennial hard to get rid of weeds .

I’ve not bothered with Jerusalem artichokes this year for I’ve made their bed which was an old method SFG one dug in the ground into a new lawn area.
Check the Asparagus bed and remove any weeds that have come through the mulch where the birds have been searching for food and put it back .
Put in a few broad beans if you like them and start collecting the 2 & 3 litre plastic pop bottles so you can make individual cloches over individual plants that will need protection later on or in the present .

I started my big onions off as individual station sown seed indoors on a north facing window cill on 10th January , now they are three inches tall , they will go to the partially heated glass house mid Feb when the frost stat heater will be running .
If it’s mild at the end of Feb it’s worth a square of beet root under pop bottle cloches but you’ll need to prepare the square with five way compost 2 to 3 weeks before sowing to let it settle & calm down.

I will also be putting in three or four squares of carrots and put a few cut down pop bottle cloches over each station sown seed .
Just to get things easier for me as I have diabetes and lost a lot of finger tip sensation , sowing individual small seeds is difficult but I can slide a seed around a flat surface . So I’ve made a set of three planting masks for square foot sowing out of some old scrap Perspex giving a 4 , 9 and 16 sowing pattern per square foot.

We have 120 overwintering Japanese onions which will be ready in June , to make the late crop for over winter use , I’ll be putting in another 150 or so heat treated sets of something like Stuttgarter Giant or Sturon and a hand full of shallots in the middle of February if there is no snow around .

The last ten days of February is also the time to think of outdoor sowing of seeds for early May / June onions, a few parsnips & early peas under cloches . Don’t forget where to put the peas in a bed and what you will support them on .( IE will they shade any other crop in the beds )
My seed potatoes have been purchased and as of a couple of days ago they are sitting in the spare room on the north facing cill in a poly foam egg box fitting . I’m going to grow a few black poly bags of them as earlies in the green house & then some more outside in bags on the patio once things warm up a bit in March , eventually using the spent MM & compost component for topping up beds .


I’ve got a few radish in the green house and will pop a few successional sown seeds in a spare bed under a cloche every 10 days or so or as inter cropping plants later on in between all sorts of crops .

Now is the final time to sort out the rhubarb , split the lifted crown with a spade and make sure there is a growth point on each section . Ensure it’s planted away from shade ,crown up... not upside down . It will need a liberal amount of well rotted manure or compost around it in a well manured hole to get it going , when it is covered over slip a 2 inch covering of new compost over the newly planted crown to ward off heavy frosts.

There are eight new beds out on our front garden , built in red engineering brick to a height of 900 mm that got their charge of 350 mm of Mel’s Mix finally laid in and turned over today in the hail rain sleeet & snow ( the crazy things us gardeners do is quite amazing ).
All the plantable February bulbs and corms are due to go in tomorrow plus a few that should have been in by mid Jan such as mini tulips . It’s too late for daffodils .

Sow cold green house tomatoes in the last ten days of FEB inside the home @ 10 to 14 C and plant out at the end of April in the green house .
All of Feb is OK to put in a few turnips under pop bottle cloches .

Remember .... A lot of the ANSFG is about sowing a little often during its sowing season for harvesting over long cropping periods
In the early days of my heady marriage when I was row gardening , my lass helped sow seeds and came to me as pleased as punch with sparkling eyes and happy voice for she had “ SOWN the Kohl Rabi “ and could she , “ Have another packet Darling , as the row was not finished “ .
24 inches of row and a whole packet of seed in the first 12 inches caused me to smile, hug and kiss her . Then I had to gently explain that a seed every four inches along the 24 inch row would have been better . They did transplant one very rainy day & for weeks all the farm animals ate KOL RABI.

Doubtless I’ll have missed off someone’s favourite veg etc. If so have a read of your seed packets and make up a sowing /planting/ harvesting schedule

Plantoid

PS
Only sow what you know you like if you’re a beginner to gardening , for it’s silly growing bucket of stuff that will only go straight on the compost heap .
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Re: End of January to end of february 2012 EUROPE

Post  RoOsTeR on 2/3/2012, 11:07 pm

Lot's of great stuff here plantoid! Very Happy It would be nice to see the European Region grow. Maybe with some new found life, others will show up! Nice job David

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