Bonnie and Borecole

I joined Kim, David H and Hilary for a morning planting session at Stirley Farm on Thursday 7th April. There are lots of different things to be planted this month, so there’s plenty for everyone to do and plenty to learn. You can see a tiny glimpse of the M62 from the farm, but it’s a different world up there. We had a calm, instructive and (dare I say it) fun time doing our planting.

What we planted:

Potatoes – Bonnie (2nd early)
Onions – Florence Long Red (sets and seeds)
Shallots – Red Sun
Peas – purple podded
Kale  – Green and Red Curly

What we learnt:

  • A plank of wood with seed spacing measured out on it is very handy indeed.
  • Planting both onion seed and onion sets helps to spread the risk of something going wrong and means that you’re less likely to end up without any onions.
  • You should try not to stand on your veg beds after you’ve dug them over, because it’s bad to compact the soil.
  • Umbellifers (it’s a real word, honest) are a family of plants with umbrella-like flowers.
  • You can cover your seeds with fleece for a while after planting to help keep the birds off your shallots (and the mice off your peas).
  • Kale may or may not be different from Borecole.
  • There’s a reason why there are no Celeriac festivals.
  • Having no mains water is a disincentive to doing the washing up.
  • There’s a well on the farm (also no good for washing up).

We had a great time, were rewarded with a cup of tea in a clean cup and a chocolate biscuit, and we lingered so long that David missed his bus and I missed my dinner. In fact, we were still there when Sue arrived for the afternoon stint, and even then I didn’t really want to leave. But at least I was inspired to spend the afternoon in my garden.

If you’d like to take part in one of the planting sessions this April, there’s some more details here: April planting at Stirley Farm

Photos: Stirley Farm, 7th April 2011

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