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  • Alan4711Alan4711 Posts: 1,657

    Hi Palaiseglide memories eh? many thanks for the info Frank, ill take all that in and use it, weve decided to keep to about 5 basics for growing next year ,new spuds old, carrotts,beetroot runner beans etc all the stuff we spend money on, if i get a polly tunnel we could do salad,  this is our first year so any advice is always good for us

    godd luck matey  Alan4711  

  • Yes Alan, memories of my father feeding us and our extended family who did not have gardens from his walled garden during and after the war. Those times appear to be back as people have to watch what they spend although they also find the true taste of produce straight from the garden, wash the soil off and into the pan. The huge store could have had the Veg out back for weeks and it starts to lose taste the second it is pulled.
    It is not easy and you have mishaps, bad summers, disease, dry spells or too much rain, gardeners need the patience of job but it is worth it. By sowing in batches you can have fresh food from early spring to late Autumn and once you do it will be hard to stop.
    Good luck and the people on here are friendly and helpful so just ask.


  • Peat BPeat B Posts: 441

    With the 'hot bed' system......... would it be at all feasable to make up the bed for the over-winter spell, and then, when it has served it's purpose, move the bed frame along to more or less re-position it alongside the 'spent' patch, and then do it all over again, thus gradually conditioning , manuring and feeding the whole of the garden in a few years ?  I was thinking of making a bed area of about 2 metres by 4 metres, or perhaps 0.5 of a metre smaller if it seems too large and heavy to handle. These salvaged double glazing units get quite similar to sheets of iron in their sturdiness !  All OK for quick dismantling and wotnot.



  • Peat Ballan, why would you bother moving a heavy frame around the garden when all you need do is spread the compost dig it in and plant.
    The hot beds I saw used would be set up in the new year early to give heat for things you wanted early.
    I think you assume the horse manure would leech into the ground under the box, well it was usually in an unwanted spot that got light but shelter from the cold winds, easy for us with a walled garden.
    The base was a covering of straw bales then raw manure then more straw and a covering of soil, you had to wait for it to get up to heat, an old thermometer came in handy. These days I would use a sand box with cables and a thermostat, same result a lot less work and more control.
    Horse manure in now more usually mixed with wood chippings where we once used straw, a much better mix for rotting down than wood chip but straw is expensive and in short supply, wood chip cheaper cleaner and plentiful.
    The problem with any kind of wood used in manure or as mulch it takes the Nitrogen out of the ground so not recommended, well not by me.


  • Peat BPeat B Posts: 441

    Hi Frank,   it's all coming clearer now. The 'manure' as we so coyly call it, is brought direct from the local stables, with copious amounts of straw in it. Geet lovely stuff, but I find that straw does seem to last a helluva long time before rotting down. it seems more of a 'feel good' factor then a 'do good' one. The best thing I saw coming out of straw was a hare, the other day !

    I  shall suck it and see, as the old saying goes..

  • Peat Ballan, if you have straw in it then it is not rotted down and not ready to put on the garden.
    Well rotted manure is crumbly in the hand and sweet smelling and that is after one or two years depending on the size of the heap and heat generated.
    Mix it in with your normal compost in thin layers, it will lift the heat in the pile and give some nice compost in a few months time, then put it on the garden.
    Do not recommend sucking it but you can tell by the feel and smell, makes your sandwiches taste better, well we could not wash our hands in the fields could we.


  • Peat BPeat B Posts: 441

    LOL ! as it goes !  Thanks Frank !

  • I have just taken on an allotment and am told to put horse manure on it by gardeners there but is there a heath risk like salmonella. Also I have scattered egg shells on a strawberry patch to ward off slugs could there be a heath risk with those also I'm worried to eat anything grown there now as I have taken their advice and used the horse manure.

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  • Thanks for that I am starting from scratch and trying to gain all the information I can.

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