Sandgate Community Garden: Update 12 July 2020

An executive decision was made in the week to meet up and work on the garden on Tuesday  instead of Wednesday when it was super soggy.  We might be a great working team but we do not enjoy being wet, and so please bear that in mind if you were making a trip up to the garden on either our Wednesday or Saturday morning session, that we do not work in serious rain!  Saturday in particular was a very sociable morning with lots of people dropping in, and it was a real community garden with lots of banter and all round good fun in the sunshine!

We are busy trying to find room for the winter brassicas, the purple sprouting and kale.  The cabbage white butterflies are very evident this week flitting about looking for somewhere to lay their eggs but we hope to have put them off by immediately covering the new plantings with a close woven mesh, making sure there are no gaps for the butterflies to get in.  The pesky blighters can spot a fault in the netting with no problem and will be in there in no time at all laying the eggs of their brassica munching caterpillars.  We still have to raise some of the mesh cloches where plants are starting to push against the netting; a job for next week.

Another week of kindness as we had more weed and oxygenating plants brought up for the pond, and two donations from Sandgate neighbours happy to see the Incredible Edible plantings in the Sandgate alley way as written about last week.  The £15 given will go towards more compost and seeds to help towards keeping the project going, there are lots of ideas and more possible projects in the pipeline, and we will keep you posted as to further developments, it is all very exciting.

Blackfly is the issue this week… there certainly seem to be plenty of them and they are pestering our poor runner beans stressed already by the wind in the week, which of course attracts the blackfly.  However Theresa was on the case, and spent time brushing and washing them off with a dilute mix of washing up liquid.  With any luck, a couple of such treatments might do the trick and stop them from overwhelming the plants.  The first dwarf beans are looking perky and a few bean pods might even be ready to pick next week.

Below is a picture of the sunflowers outside the fence and along the wall.  The first two plants were snapped by the wind, the rest are incredibly still standing, and the first flower is starting to show colour.  With any luck they will grow taller than the wall and make a real show.

What’s next?

  • Raise the cloches for the brassicas
  • Keep cutting, picking and weeding
  • Plant out the purple sprouting