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Tips for a newbie

Im looking for tips on how i should "setup" my garden. I have a little garden and am currently digging the rough shape of my vegetable patch. I plan on planting 2 blackcurrant plants, some strawberrys and potatoes.
The shape of the vegetable patch is an "L" shape which is roughly 1m by 1m but im not sure exactly.
Any hints /tips would be greatly appreciated



  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Central Norfolk UKPosts: 72,040
    edited May 2019
    Hi 😊 

    I’m a little concerned that your veg patch isn’t going to be big enough for all that you want to do. Although black currant bushes start out small they soon grow to occupy quite a bit of space. Two will soon fill your 1m x 1m with no room for anything else, but you will only be harvesting fruit from them for a very few days each year. 

    Do you you have a fence or wall where you could grow your fruitbushes as cordons against the support, thus freeing up more space for growing vegetables?

    My other thought is, are you sure that you want to grow potatoes?  They are relatively cheap to buy compared with some veg, but four potato plants will occupy the whole of your veg patch for the next 3 - 4 months and you’ll have no room to grow anything else. 

    My suggestion is that you grow some veg that are quick to produce a crop such as cut and come again salad leaves that you can harvest every few days, and a small wigwam of climbing French beans which will produce a crop even if you sow them this late in the season. 

    Strawberries will grow happily in pots or even hanging baskets with a little care and attention and certainly the slugs will find it harder to reach the fruit. 

    I hope that helps 😊 
    “I am not lost, for I know where I am. But however, where I am may be lost.” Winnie the Pooh

  • NollieNollie Girona, Catalunya, Northen Spain.Posts: 5,025
    I’m afraid I agree with Dove, thats a small space better suited to leafy salad crops, maybe a couple of spinach plants to harvest baby leaves. Radishes are also quick to grow and often spicier/better flavoured than shop-bought. If you don’t like climbing beans (I don’t!) french beans don’t take up too much space. Kohl rabi is another interesting veg that is not too space hungry. 

    Did you see the episode of Gardener’s World a couple of weeks ago where Adam Frost was filling in for Monty Don? Worth watching on catch-up if you haven’t, Adam has a series of beds barely 1m2 and this will give you an idea. 
  • @Nollie thanks for the info, i can slightly extend the shape of the patch so it's in a square, please also bear in mind that we have a few trees and one tree stump, so i am limited in space.
    So, if i just grow blackcurrants and strawberrys, would that work for me?

  • FairygirlFairygirl west central ScotlandPosts: 39,673
    Strawbs are easy to grow in containers,, so that might give you more room. I see Dove has already mentioned that, and you can then move them around to suit your space, and the sun.
    You can even do them in troughs/baskets on walls and fences, which makes use of any vertical spaces.
    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....

  • ok, thanks.
  • RubytooRubytoo On the sofa, Southerly aspect.Posts: 1,286
    edited May 2019
    If you really want spuds you can grow them in a barrel or get relatively cheap tall bag thingies to grow them in.
    I don't do veg, but seen the potato grow bags for sale.  I think you are supposed to be able to grow them taking up less space being more vertical.
    Veg growers will be able to say if they are a good idea or not.
  • NollieNollie Girona, Catalunya, Northen Spain.Posts: 5,025
    If you grow smaller, salad potatoes in bags or barrels, that does work ok and they do taste better than shop-bought. Not worth growing larger maincrop potatoes tho.

    You could even grow one of the smaller, more compact blackcurrant plants in a large pot, although it may not crop as well as one in the ground. Blackcurrants grow best in slightly acidic soil, so use a good proportion of ericaceous compost in the growing medium, mixed with some soil and leaf mould if you can get it. Keep it well-watered as they don’t like to dry out. 
  • hogweedhogweed Central ScotlandPosts: 4,025
    If you watch the Beechgrove Garden, they have a regular feature on growing veg in very small spaces - and a regular feature on growing veg in containers. 
    'Optimism is the faith that leads to achievement' - Helen Keller
  • hogweedhogweed Central ScotlandPosts: 4,025
    In that small a space I would concentrate on things that taste so much better straight from the ground - like carrots, radishes, spring onions, even a row of shallots, beetroot, cut and come again lettuce, perhaps even an outdoor tomato or 2 if you are in the south. All these can be sown at intervals so your ground is always producing ie more bang for your buck. 
    'Optimism is the faith that leads to achievement' - Helen Keller
  • edhelkaedhelka GwyneddPosts: 1,974
    I tried strawberries both in pots and in the ground and they never did well for me in pots. They need a lot of water and root space to perform well. If you do them in pots, don't buy those pots labelled as strawberry pots (lots of small compartments or stacking pots), they don't work well.
    It depends on what you like but if I had to choose one thing to grow in a veg/fruit bed, it would be strawberries. Second place goes to french beans (both climbing and dwarf) and third to courgettes. Radishes, spring onions or salad leaves can be done in spring before it is time for tender crops.
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