Sandgate Community Garden: Update 13 December 2020

The flat wheelbarrow tyre got fixed with a new inner tube and is up and running again, able to trundle yet more wood chips and compost around the garden.  We still have mulching to do in various places, and by Christmas with any luck, the whole of the garden will have been covered in some sort of mulch.   The squirrels have been making their own mulch from spent acorns from the small oak tree within the garden.  Having eaten the acorn, they drop the debris all over the place, or carry off the acorns and dig holes to bury them in.  They never find all of their buried treasure so no doubt we will be in for a few saplings coming through in the spring.

The snapped tree was very efficiently cut down by the kind Saga gardeners/groundsmen with a chainsaw, and all the debris removed.  We managed to find some of the larger pieces to put around the edge of the pond giving the wildlife some extra cover and hiding places. 

This week we made a start on harvesting some of the Oca, or New Zealand yam.  The Oca was planted way back in April and put in spaces around some new Aronia bushes and just left to get on with it; so a great crop for filling in spare spaces.  The tubers begin to swell from early October and can be harvested from mid-November – ideal for a mild area, as they suffer from hard frosts, but can be grown in pots which can be sheltered.  It will be interesting to find out from the volunteers if they feel the crop is tasty enough to be grown again from spare tubers next year.  It can be eaten raw or cooked like a potato.

The wild garlic patch has appeared again and ready for some harvesting.  During the summer when it retreats underground, the space was overgrown with summer squashes, but now it is back and claiming the space, absolutely brilliant made into a pesto. 

The Park is looking very beautiful with all the lights in some of the trees for the Christmas period and not wishing to be left out we have been having a go at making a few decorations of our own to hang on one of the gates and the oak tree.  The shortest day or winter solstice is just over a week away now, and the garden is dozing, 

What’s next?

  • Will the fleece ever arrive?
  • Continue with the wood chips and mulch
  • Continue to remove old and rotting leaves from around the base of plants
  • Weed spinach tunnel
  • Plant spare lavender