Sandgate Community Garden: Update 15 November 2020

There are still some people who are yet to find us in Enbrook Park, and it can be quite lengthy to explain exactly where we are too!  However, not any more as we have appeared on the maps at the entrances of the park – so there is no excuse, we are on the map!

Again this week we have been very busy clearing beds and fallen leaves, putting down new compost and paths, and planting broad beans.  The fleece needed to protect the plants from wind and frost is yet to arrive in the post, so thank goodness for the continuing mild weather.  The sun is lower in the sky these days, when it can be seen; the days are shorter, and the plant growth is very much reduced and slower.  The addition of fleece further reduces the light by 15 to 30%, and worse with a covering of fallen leaves, it is all important to keep the plot tidy.  Such moist warm weather has been perfect for fungi, and we are noticing some of the most amazing fungal structures – they do no harm within the garden, and are thought to be of great benefit, so we leave them be wherever they choose to pop up.

A welcome bonus has been a few raspberries; they are still fruiting in November, and as young plants need time to mature for a worthy crop – all in good time.  They are autumn raspberry varieties, hence the late fruiting at a time when all other soft fruit finished some time ago.

The hops have lost all their leaves now and are just showing their climbing stems, so it has been time to cover the crown of the plants with a good layer of compost to protect the plant from winter weather and feed the roots for next year when new growth will appear in the spring.  We have now heard that Docker brewery are about to release the Hythe Pale Ale from the scheme hops, and a further brew has been started to make a Christmas stout, we are looking forward to trying it all.  We will let you all know where and when any of these beers can be bought.

Talking about buying local goods – some of us were pleased to buy the new Sandgate bags from the Sandgate Society, made of cloth, not plastic, for a bargain price of £3 with a competition winning picture of the beach on the front.  Beautifully wrapped they make a brilliant present and perfect for us to carry our tools and veg.  All the profits go towards local projects – an even better reason to make a purchase.

What’s next?

  • Plant the peas in the prepared bed, and find another space for more
  • Tidy up around the tool box
  • Continue to pick up leaves and weed
  • Spaces for posts to be put in
  • How is the pond doing?  Continue to get out any rotting leaves
  • Separate recycled compost from the grow bags and add to the compost pile
  • If the fleece arrives, cover the new plantings