Plant some vegetables on the May Bank holiday

Plant some vegetables on the May Bank holiday

Plant some vegetables on the May Bank holiday


Come May, the main risk of frost has past and the soils is starting to warm up nicely. It’s the perfect time to dig in some nice organic matter and get some early edible crops under way. Here are a few



Outdoor planting

If you didn’t get around to sowing broad beans in the Autumn, you can do so now and with a bit of luck you might be picking some before the end of June. They’re not only delicious but a source of Vitamin B1, folate and fibre as well. Make sure the soil is well prepared with a good organic compost such as Veggie Gold. Digging in some additional well rotted manure such as Chicken Poo Natural Fertiliser and you will really get things moving!

Now is good time to put your first carrot seeds in too as they can take a while to come to fruition. For quicker pay-back, sow some radishes and a range of lettuces and you’ll have something to enjoy in as little as four weeks. 

Crops such as these are perfect for raised beds – not least because they are easier to keep weed-free and the raised sides reduce the risk of carrot fly infestation. Fill the beds with Veggie Gold, a ready-to-go blend of compost, well-rotted manure and topsoil that gives the plants everything they need to get established. 

Don’t forget the spuds – it’s by no means too late to plant chitted second earlies such as Charlotte or maincrop potatoes like King Edwards. 

Give the ground a good forking over to remove weeds and water in a sprinkling of traditional natural slow release fertiliser such as Growise Fish Blood & Bone before planting. It has all the nutrients for all round healthy plant growth. 

The earlier you prepare some  round for Summer crops the better. Choose your spot for favourites such as runner beans and sweet corn and dig in plenty of rich organic mater such as Vegie  old and well-rotted farmyard manure. Then just give the earthworms a bit of time to work their magic. You can plant out pot-raised beans from the end of May  or sow directly into the soil from mid-May onwards. 

Under glass 

Start by cleaning the inside of your greenhouse and tools if you didn’t get around to it in the  Autumn. You do not want any lingering plant diseases to spoil the new season’s crop. If you plant directly into the soil and you’re not moving your greenhouse, you may want to replace the top two or three of inches of soil with Multi-purpose Topsoil. Either way, make sure it is thoroughly enriched with a quality compost-and-manure blend. 

Indoor cucumbers produce lovely smooth long fruits and crop well even if the outside weather is less than great. Buy ‘all female’ F1 hybrid varieties for guaranteed best results. (If ordering in April you could even use your free growbag.) 

Tomato varieties such as Roma, Gardener’s Delight or Shirley grow well under glass. To make best use of the space, consider planting rows of basil seeds between the tomatoes at intervals of two to three weeks and you  will have a continuous supply throughout the summer. And there’s nothing more tasty than a fresh, home grown tomato and basil salad.

22nd April 2016

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