Sunday, 7 June 2009


Aim: A platform to allow gardeners to share data and knowledge about cropping times, local conditions etc in an attempt to monitor and optimise food cultivation processes and techniques.

Composting (green and brown waste)
Water Butt (n.b. modify design to allow draining --> prevent stagnation)
Veggie plot plant info packs per vegetable.
Freecycle element: i.e. give away free cuttings, clippings, excess cropped veg or fruit (Wanted, Offered etc.)
Surveying (trundle wheel, camera)
Google Sketchup

Here is an awesome email from Tasha which will really help kick started the garden project.

Ok so here it is!

This is pretty much as far as I can go with your garden. Below is a list of "beds" these "beds" are comprised of plants which get on well together. It is up to you where you place the beds in your garden. As general rules I would advise no straight lines/borders just create soft curved lines that allow the plants to be placed together and also so you can reach the middle of the bed at any given point. During the winter the only preparation I would do is clear that right hand corner a bit so you can use that raised bed and then cover all the areas you plan on using with mulch and cardboard to keep it warm and help kill off any weeds you don't want over winter. Then when you come to plant you just cut holes in the mulch/cardboard and work straight in. I've read that people are finding they get greater yields leaving the soil in tact for many reasons yet to be fully understood by modern science.

1. Nasturtium and Courgette; the nastrutium creeps and traps aphids, attracts predatory insects and helps curcurbits. (I think this would be good in the raised bed so the nasturtium dosn't get completely out of control (also you can eat all of the nasturtium plant)
2. Peppermint and Broccolli; the smell of peppermint repels cabbage fliesand slugs
3. Carrot, onion, lettuce and coriander; onion will deter carrot fly and repel slugs and corianders smell will help repel carrot fly
4. Potato, tomato, basil, parsley, oregano, mint; oregano provides ground cover, basil is said to make tomatoes taste better and mint repels slugs
5. Pea and Garlic; garlic deters rabbits, slugs, aphids, carrot fly and cabbage worms (sounds good)
6. Rosemary, sage, thyme and tarrago; sage deters cabbage fly, aromatic herbs deter slugs, spiky textures do as well (these could be put near the house for cooking convience or put at random in amongst the beds I guess)
7. Pakchoi, spinach, watercress and borage; borage is a magick bullet in companion planting it's said to improve any plant yield
Yarrow increases the essential oil production of some herbs and can be used as a compost enricher (plant all around the garden)
Marigold produces natural pesticidal in its roots and lasts for years in the soil even once the plant has died (again plant everywhere)

I would try to grow everything from seed in compost pots then put the pots straight in the ground when they are big ennough. Tell me what you think for some direction and we can go from there. We need to sort out how you will get mulch, composting, water supply. Also there are tonns of things we could do in the garden to help make the house more efficient. Oh, in terms of design I thought it would be nice if you made the arch trail with something and put a seat in it. I do have a very rough sketch of a plan but I don't have a scanner, so not much use sorry.

Tasha x

p.s. watercress likes water, thought of having a small water feature? If not you can always dig a small trough for it to be planted in so the water collects there.