Collecting Up Fallen Leaves

This weekend, if it stops raining, I plan to do some raking. Collecting up fallen leaves is not always necessary. And of course it can often be beneficial to leave them where they fall, to rot down naturally and complete the natural cycle. However, I do collect up leaves from part of my garden eachContinue reading “Collecting Up Fallen Leaves”

Gardening Helps Fight the Winter Blues

In winter, as the nights draw in, it is easy to feel despondent. You may sometimes get the feeling that things have stalled. Taking on a gardening project can help you avoid that slumped winter feeling – giving you purpose and a sense of drive over the coldest months. Even when plants in your gardenContinue reading “Gardening Helps Fight the Winter Blues”

It Might Not Be Too Late to Start Growing This Year

If you have an undercover growing area, or live in a warmer temperate climate zone, growing edible produce is not just something which is confined to the summer months. Even in a cooler temperate climate, you can still get growing if you consider options for windowsill growing indoors. In November, there is still time toContinue reading “It Might Not Be Too Late to Start Growing This Year”

Prepare Now to Protect Plants From Winter Frost

I would not be without my polytunnel for winter growing. Now is a time when I check this structure over, and make sure everything is ready and secure to see my winter crops and overwintering crops through the colder months to come. Winter is not here yet, but it really is just around the corner.Continue reading “Prepare Now to Protect Plants From Winter Frost”

Case Study: South Carolina Permaculture Plan

This is a recent concept design for a property in South Carolina, where the needs of a family of three and their dogs must be met. This garden in USDA hardiness zone 7b slopes down very slightly from the south west to north east, with a slightly more pronounced slope down from the front ofContinue reading “Case Study: South Carolina Permaculture Plan”

Case Study: Aiming for Self-Sufficiency

This is a design for a smallholding for a couple with this fairly modest piece of land in SE Scotland who are aiming for as much self-sufficiency as possible. The couple already grows some fruits and vegetables but wished to create a design which would allow them to increase their resilience and self-reliance. The coupleContinue reading “Case Study: Aiming for Self-Sufficiency”

Case Study: Shared Tenement Garden

Shared gardens can often be boring and largely featureless spaces, which, in attempting to please everyone, actually please no-one. These spaces have to do a lot. But careful collaboration between all stakeholders or garden users can create truly abundant, productive and beautiful spaces. This is my design for a garden in Scotland shared by fourContinue reading “Case Study: Shared Tenement Garden”

Lessons Sustainable Gardeners Soon Learn

We’ve had a terrible year for plums this year. A very late severe frost in spring meant we already had a bad fruit set, and wet, windy weather in the last few weeks set back some and meant that we lost others. Earlier blossoming apples also fared much less well than usual. It certainly hasContinue reading “Lessons Sustainable Gardeners Soon Learn”

Why Understanding Plant Roots is Important in a Garden

As gardeners, we ignore the rhizosphere at our peril. New gardeners naturally tend to focus on what plants look like above ground when planning their gardens. But plant roots and what goes on below the soil is also very important. It might sound very obvious, but we should not forget that most plants take inContinue reading “Why Understanding Plant Roots is Important in a Garden”

Potato Harvest and Tips For Good Yields

I’ve been harvesting a lot while taking a break from work this week, and harvesting potatoes reminded me of previous years’ experimentation and what has worked for me and what has not gone so well. Today, I thought I would share some of my tips to help you get good yields of potatoes: Should youContinue reading “Potato Harvest and Tips For Good Yields”