Looking back at what was going on this time last year in the garden, which I wrote about in my midsummer garden post, it was brought back to me how much difference the weather can make each year.
This spring got off to a very slow start here. We had some very cold weather and winter lingered for a lot longer than it often does. Then we had a very dry period, since when things have been mixed – with some lovely sunny periods, some very warm weather, but also some patchy weather too.
Since we diversify here, however, we always have something which works out well in the garden. The late arrival to spring has delayed some crops a bit. Some things have not done as well. And yet some plants are booming. Every year is different, and diversification can improve your chances of success.
We have already begun to harvest plenty of forest garden crops which were not ready to harvest yet this time last year. For example, the wild raspberries in the polytunnel are a little further ahead. Some annual crops are also ahead, but many are also a little behind where they were last year.
So what I want to draw attention to today is the importance of expecting the unexpected when it comes to the weather. When planning and designing a garden, and when tending your garden over time, you need to think about how to hedge your bets, and how to avoid extreme losses in the garden.
Remembering that every year is different and working within a realistic range of possibilities – based on previous experience and on expectations of climate change – can help you make sure that you always obtain a good yield from your garden.