Posted by: kathandroger | May 2, 2011

Nettles, horse poo or nothing?

Our friend Gilles, who has a fabulous garden, swears by nettles to feed his tomatoes. He plants his tomato plants in trenches lined with nettles and I have to say he seems to have great success. We would usually dig a bit of horse manure into our soil, so it seemed the sensible thing to do a bit of a trial. I planted out a dozen plants today, using the Gilles method, will do another dozen with nothing to enhance the soil and the remaining two dozen in manure…watch this space for the results! The other dilemma when it comes to tomatoes is of course when to plant. If you read this blog last year you will know that we fell victim to the so-called Ice Saints – the Saints whose ‘days’ fall on the 11th, 12th and 13th May, dates that are notorious in gardeners’ calendars for late frost. Although our tomatoes, chillies, courgettes and squash plants are very ready to go out I am going to hang on for another couple of weeks – bound not to have frost!!  Better safe than sorry however….

Something that is definitely ahead of schedule this year – our strawberries…

Ripe strawbs on the 30th April – unheard of! Last year our plants cropped right through until October – good job we like strawberries! The broad beans will be ready in a matter of days; sadly I can’t say the same about the peas, which have been a bit of a disaster this year. Oh well, can’t have it all!

You can tell we live in la France Profonde – we had a visit from our mason, Jean-Marc, the other day on one of his tractors. He has a collection of 10 old tractors and Roger made the mistake of expressing interest. (Actually, he is genuinely interested and seems to like his little chats about tractors – luckily it is assumed that I won’t be interested!!)…


Responses

  1. I love strawberry ! It’s delicious !

  2. I’m a horse-poo man myself – do keep us posted on the use of nettles.
    Our strawbs are still green but they look better than they have for the past two years – did you use cloches to bring them on?

  3. After 2 days the trial is still inconclusive….
    No cloches on the strawbs – just pure St Remy sunshine!

  4. Thank you but if I come in your garden, I will eat all your strawberries because I’m very tasty !


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