Allotment garden planting plans 2015….

IMG_1949

I think this is my favourite time of year! Sitting around the kitchen table with my family, chatting about what everyone wants to grow in the garden….perfect. So here we are. We’ve pretty much decided on our planting plans for the allotment garden 2015 – lots of old favourites and some very exciting newbies. We saved loads of seeds from last years crops and still have many left over that we bought, so we are in fact buying very few this year, which is brilliant when you’re on a budget and exactly what being self-sufficient is all about.

As many of you will know, we garden organically, but have also been experimenting with biodynamic gardening techniques for many years. If you’re not familiar with the concept you can read a post about it here. Our seeds come from a biodynamic company called Stormy Hall, but if they don’t have what we’re looking for then we use Tamar Organics or the Organic Seed Company. All excellent suppliers and their details are here.

We group our plants into 4 categories – leaf, flower, fruit and root, similar to regular plant groups, but with a biodynamic twist! We have 9 raised beds on our allotment (including 2 new ones for 2015) and every year we rotate our crops for the health of the soil. We’re also great fans of companion planting, so you’ll see lots of herbs and flowers in our crop lists. So here goes……

The Plan

Planting Plan 2015

Bed 6 will be our ‘leaf’ bed.

Beds 1 and 9 (a new bed) will be our ‘flower’ beds.

Beds 2 and 3 will be our ‘fruit’ beds.

Beds 4, 5 and 7 will be our ‘root’ beds.

Bed 8 is a new bed and will be a permanent home for our strawberries and rhubarb. We also have a permanent patch of raspberries and two big beds along the picket fence for our cut-flower garden (I’ll write a separate post on that at some point).

The A-E symbols show the storage spots for various biodynamic preparations (I’ll write something about this too when I get a minute!).

The Crops

LEAF

leaf2.jpg

Bed 6:

  • Spinach: Giant Winter (great for spring and autumn sowing, plus it stands through winter….bonus!)
  • Leaf beet: Perpetual (brilliant over-winter greens)
  • Leaf beet: 5 Colours (rainbow coloured stems look gorgeous in the garden)
  • Cabbage: Red Drumhead (just for the joy of the pretty patterns when you cut it in half!)
  • Brussel Sprouts: Groninger (perfect Christmas sprout)
  • Kale: Westland Winter (curly kale, a favourite of ours, because it lasts all winter)
  • Kale: Nero di Toscana (a more peppery flavour and another winter winner)
  • Summer Leek: King Richard (a very early variety and a new one for us)
  • Winter Leek: Musselburgh (brilliant over-winter leek)
  • Florence Fennel: Perfektion (love this veg – delicious in soups and juices)
  • Winter Lettuce:  Valdor (thought we’d give this very hardy lettuce a go!)
  • Calendula (companion)
  • Dill (companion)
  • Lots of lovely lettuce: Huge variety (a very handy, fast-growing catch crop, to be planted wherever there’s a gap)

 

 FLOWER

flower.jpg

Bed 1:

  • Cut flowers & green manure (rye and lupin)

Bed 9:

  • Broccoli: Green Calabrese (normal broccoli – if that’s possible!)
  • Broccoli: Veronika Romanesco (a cross between a cauliflower and a broccoli, this one makes me feel in awe of nature’s perfection)
  • Broccoli: Purple Sprouting Early
  • Broccoli: Purple Sprouting Late
  • Cauliflower: Goodman (summer harvest)
  • Cauliflower: Autumn Gory (autumn harvest)
  • Cauliflower: Medaillon (over-winter)
  • Tagetes (companion plant)
  • Nasturtiums (companion plant)
  • Chamomile (companion plant)

 

FRUIT

fruit.jpg

Bed 2: (the 3 sisters bed – you can read a little about this planting method here.)

  • Squash: Butternut Waltham (roasted with loads of other veg – yum!)
  • Pumpkin: Lady Godiva: (a new one for us, apparently it has the best edible seeds)
  • Squash: Pattypan (I remember loving these as a child, so I’m looking forward to growing them)
  • Sweetcorn: Stowell’s Evergreen (a really old variety with white cobs)
  • Runner bean: Scarlet Emperor (gorgeous red flowers)

Bed 3:

  • Courgette: Zucchini Elite (lovely traditional courgette)
  • Courgette: Gold Rush (yellow, just for a change!)
  • Peas: Senator
  • French bean: Blauhilde (an old favourite with purple pods)
  • Broad bean: Express (a fantastic early bird)
  • Broad bean: Super Aquadulce (will sow late for an over-winter crop)
  • Nasturtiums (companion plant)
  • Limnanthes (companion plant)
  • Rosemary (companion plant)

Bed 8:  (a new permanent fruit bed)

  • Strawberries: Christine, Cambridge Favourite and Symphony (for the longest cropping season possible!)
  • Rhubarb: Victoria – I think! (they came with the allotment so can’t be sure, but very tasty)
  • Borage (companion plant and bees love it too)
  • Thyme (companion plant)

Established beds:

  • Raspberries: Autumn Glory
  • Blackcurrants: Ben Connan and Ben Hope
  • Gooseberry: Invicta
  • Apples: Discovery and Scrumptious
  • Plums: Victoria

Over the arch:

  • Climbing squash: Twonga (because it’s blue! and the name is fun)

 

ROOT

roots.jpg

Bed 4:

  • Yellow Onions: Radar
  • Red Onions: Robelja
  • Garlic: Spanish Roja (proper garlic! lovely strong flavour)
  • Chamomile (companion plant)
  • Tarragon (companion plant)

Bed 5:

  • 1st Early Potatoes: Amandine (waxy new potatoes and a new variety for us to try)
  • Main Crop Potatoes: Remarka (big reliable bakers)
  • Tagetes (companion plant)

Bed 7:

  • Beetroot: Boltardy (possibly my favourite veg in the garden – we grow lots…)
  • Beetroot: Bolivar (a newbie)
  • Parsnips: White Gem (good variety for our heavy clay soil)
  • Carrots: Autumn King (a fab autumn/winter carrot)
  • Carrots: Purple Haze (totally wowed by the colour of these)
  • Carrots: Rodelika (great for juicing)
  • Celeriac: Monarch (makes delicious creamy soup)
  • Tagetes (companion plant)
  • Chives (companion plant)
  • Dill (Companion plant)

PHEW!!!

Although we do lots of planning, these lists are never set in stone. Nature has a way of changing things sometimes, which means we have to change too! I’m really excited about another year in the allotment garden and all the joy that it brings. Now I must stop writing and start sowing some seeds…….

Happy Gardening to you all.

5 thoughts on “Allotment garden planting plans 2015….

  1. Mickey Mouse says:

    Wow! Sensational!!! What a lot of wonderful love and work’s gone into getting this together. Can I come and help weed? ❤️🌻

    Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s