I do not put ads on my blog but do have a counter that shows me how many visits the pages get. (The stats. count is just there so I can see if I am 'talking' to myself, luckily so far this has not happened.) By continuing your visit here you are consenting to the stats. counter tracking cookies. Cookies, that sounds like something nice to eat but not that exciting.

Growing Your Own Fruit and Vegetables

We grow our own fruit and vegetables for our meals for as much of the year as we can. Without a greenhouse we have to buy shop food in the winter months but in the spring, summer and autumn we often have enough to share with family and friends.

Read about growing your fruit and vegetables here on my growing your own food pages.

Tuesday, 26 April 2011

Growing Vegetables in difficult soil conditions.

Growing Vegetables in poor soil.

The challenge of producing a good crop of vegetables increases when you do not have the best soil conditions for the vegetables you are trying to grow.  One cannot choose the soil that is available to grow your vegetable plot on, even if it is possible to modify it over time.

So what is the best way to grow vegetables if your soil conditions are causing problems? To a certain extent you are at the mercy of the area you live, some regions in the UK have mostly clay soils while other areas have very sandy soil.

Once you know what type of soil you have in your vegetable plot it can make sense to look around and see what others are growing successfully nearby, the ‘old hands’ will know from experience what vegetable crops will struggle to produce a goo crop in the natural soil conditions of the local area.

There are at least two approaches really if you have a problem soil, one is to follow the advice above and grow things that thrive in the conditions that you already have.
The other approach is to modify the growing conditions by growing your vegetables in raised beds.

If the soil you have is really difficult to work you may over the years be able to add to its humus with homemade compost, green manure crops and liberal additions of well rotted manure. But if you want to grow the vegetables of your choice with out all of this time and effort a raised bed method of growing may be the easiest solution to your problems.

With a raised bed you are able to add the growing medium that best suits the vegetables that you want to grow.

More on this in a future post when there will also be pictures of the raised bed method of growing vegetables.

Just for the record, I have very sandy soil on my vegetable plot and have this year started to grow some of my vegetables and strawberries in raised beds. The comparison between the ones struggling in the poor soil conditions in a dry spell and the raised beds that retain moisture for longer (because of the mixing in of compost and well rotted manure)  is surprising.

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a healthy potato plant in flower

a healthy potato plant in flower
photo of potatoes in flower

home grown carrots.. grown from seed

home grown carrots.. grown from seed
photo of my first bunch of carrots 2009

Even a small batch of mixed fruit can be useful

Even a small batch of mixed fruit can be useful
Home Grown Fruit can be made into delicious compote