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Thread: Anyone grow veg and fruit in a town garden?

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    Default Anyone grow veg and fruit in a town garden?

    Hope this is in the right forum.

    Anyhow, I'm far from Tom and Barbara in the Good Life, and am realistic enough to know that growing your own can be a pain sometimes, not to mention expensive too.

    However....am hoping to get a greenhouse either this year or next.

    Have an eighty foot long garden that is not used much apart from the paved area outside the back door.

    Fed up cutting the grass, and think I could try growing something.

    I'd like spuds, lettuces, cauli, broccolli, carrots, peas and beans, raspberries, strawberries, that's what we like. No point growing stuff you won't eat!

    Where do I start? And has anyone done this in an urban garden, and any advice?

    Bear in mind that Spring is happening, so need to get my act together. Although soil prep should have been happening already I suppose.

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    Polytunnels are your friend, cheap to buy and erect, cheap and simple to make, if you're anyway handy at all. If you know which end of a screwdriver is the business end then you can build a polytunnel.

    Plenty of info on google/youtube.
    Fianna Fail - The Anti Democratic Party & The Anti Constitutional Party. Traitors of Irishmen and Irishwomen.

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    My Father did it in a garden smaller than that - climbing pear and apple trees that take up little room as they climb the wall. Early spuds shuld be planted on Paddy's day, get the seed spuds now and let them sprout (somewhere like a spare room), I wouldn't bother with a greenhouse - an old window on a wooden box is fine for raspberries and strawberries. Watch the lettuces for slugs. Hubby wanted to do this the natural way, so the birds wouldn't eat slugs killed by slug pellets, he put guinness into jar lids - yes we killed a lot of slugs, but word god around in "slug world" that there was free drink at our place.

    Any book by Gerry Daly should help though.
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    Don,t forget to get netting for the fruit, peas and beans or the birds will nick them. Also broken eggshells are fairly good at deterring snails from the lettuces, Best of luck with it.

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    everything you need to know is here GIY Ireland - Together We Grow!

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    Quote Originally Posted by asset test View Post
    Hope this is in the right forum.

    Anyhow, I'm far from Tom and Barbara in the Good Life, and am realistic enough to know that growing your own can be a pain sometimes, not to mention expensive too.

    However....am hoping to get a greenhouse either this year or next.

    Have an eighty foot long garden that is not used much apart from the paved area outside the back door.

    Fed up cutting the grass, and think I could try growing something.

    I'd like spuds, lettuces, cauli, broccolli, carrots, peas and beans, raspberries, strawberries, that's what we like. No point growing stuff you won't eat!

    Where do I start? And has anyone done this in an urban garden, and any advice?

    Bear in mind that Spring is happening, so need to get my act together. Although soil prep should have been happening already I suppose.
    Yeah, I'm doing it about 8 years now. I grow my stuff in a 20 x 3ft garden, so you will get absolutely tonnes of veg from a 80ft stretch!

    A few tips:

    1. Don't turn over the whole garden this year. Too daunting and could put you off.

    2. Peas and beans would be tricky enough first time out. Raspberries and strawberries are easier, but are prone to pests.

    3. Lettuces are easy to grow, but only plant about 6 or else you will be left with a glut.

    4. Cauliflower and brocolli are fairly easy to grow, but you will need to blanch and freeze them to save them going to waste.

    5. Root veg are easy too. Carrots can be a bit demoralising though due to rootfly wiping them out. Swedes and beetroots are really easy. Parsnips too, but you will need to dig your soil deep.

    6. Spuds are a doddle. Dig a hole, shovel in some horse manure, plant about 3ft apart and earth up into a drill. Watch for blight around July/August and spray with Bluestone (Copper Sulphate).

    7. Buy a cat trap and catch and stray as many of the filthy hoors as you can. (No joke.)

    8. If I was you, I would dig 1/3 of the garden. This will help you for your 3-way rotation if you decide to do the whole garden next year. Put down half in spuds, 6 cauli, 6 broc, 6 lettuce, loads of beetroot, some parsnips and swedes.

    9. Never worry about having too much, as friends, family, neighbours will be delighted to take it off you.

    10. Be patient, resilient, prepared to fail (spectacularly! ), but above all, look forward to top quality beautiful vegetables that no money can buy.

    Best of luck, a chara. You won't regret it.


    EDIT: Onions, scallions and garlic are dead easy. They store very well too.
    Last edited by Johnny; 14th February 2013 at 10:04 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by asset test View Post
    Hope this is in the right forum.

    Anyhow, I'm far from Tom and Barbara in the Good Life, and am realistic enough to know that growing your own can be a pain sometimes, not to mention expensive too.

    However....am hoping to get a greenhouse either this year or next.

    Have an eighty foot long garden that is not used much apart from the paved area outside the back door.

    Fed up cutting the grass, and think I could try growing something.

    I'd like spuds, lettuces, cauli, broccolli, carrots, peas and beans, raspberries, strawberries, that's what we like. No point growing stuff you won't eat!

    Where do I start? And has anyone done this in an urban garden, and any advice?

    Bear in mind that Spring is happening, so need to get my act together. Although soil prep should have been happening already I suppose.
    Absolutely, go for it.
    Great therapy and a greenhouse is a great place to escape domestic blow-ups.
    If you're getting a greenhouse there should be nothing stopping you growing tomatoes, peppers, cucumbers, etc as well.
    You're lucky to have such a big garden, and kudos for not covering it with concrete or decking.
    A Cardinal sin in this country.

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    Quote Originally Posted by EUrJokingMeRight View Post
    Polytunnels are your friend, cheap to buy and erect, cheap and simple to make, if you're anyway handy at all. If you know which end of a screwdriver is the business end then you can build a polytunnel.
    ye but where do you get the watermain pipe from?

  9. #9
    Politics.ie Member Mitsui2's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by asset test View Post
    Hope this is in the right forum.

    Anyhow, I'm far from Tom and Barbara in the Good Life, and am realistic enough to know that growing your own can be a pain sometimes, not to mention expensive too.

    However....am hoping to get a greenhouse either this year or next.

    Have an eighty foot long garden that is not used much apart from the paved area outside the back door.

    Fed up cutting the grass, and think I could try growing something.

    I'd like spuds, lettuces, cauli, broccolli, carrots, peas and beans, raspberries, strawberries, that's what we like. No point growing stuff you won't eat!

    Where do I start? And has anyone done this in an urban garden, and any advice?

    Bear in mind that Spring is happening, so need to get my act together. Although soil prep should have been happening already I suppose.
    Best use of your time and your garden (eighty feet? I ***** hate you!) that you could possibly make.

    Even in the undependable Irish climate there's plenty of stuff you can reasonably rely on, even without a greenhouse - there's no need to wait for one. We don't have room for one in our own garden, but we've built four raised beds from which over the past few years we've really had lots of great stuff. Based on our experience you can easily get

    Potatoes (an excellent return so try a few different kinds)
    onions
    carrots
    leeks
    garlic - and of course herbs (thanks to the mild winter I'm still using last year's parsley straight from the garden)
    any number of different lettuces
    beans & peas
    courgettes
    kale
    cabbage
    etc etc

    Every time we plant cauliflower it bolts, and last year the kale was eaten by a plague of caterpillars, but even with all of the rain we wound up with a bumper late crop of tomatoes grown in the open air. Not as ripe as they should have been, but fine for making kilos and kilos of tomato sauce that we froze and have been eating all winter.

    Invest in a few decent books (check your local library first, though, as they almost always have a few) and learn some basics on soil types and crop rotation and you can - certainly with the space you have - produce a huge amount without breaking either your back or the bank. As for time, you still have a couple of months, really - if you're planting in the open it's best wait till night frosts are unlikely before planting much. And there are lots of helpful sites available online where enthusiasts and professionals give advice freely (and for free).

    If I sound like an enthusiast, then it's something I'd never have believed of myself even a few years ago. I only got involved originally because my wife asked me to build her a raised bed for veg. But vegetable growing is a weirdly seductive pursuit - especially if you cook.

    Basically, if me and the mrs can get the results we've been getting, anybody can.

  10. #10
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    Mint and parsley supply is also rarely wasted.
    Thrives in our wet summers.
    Also a Laurel tree outside will give you Bay leaves all year round.

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