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Gardening Diary March


Gardening Diary March

March - an overview

Any soil that has not been dug over in the winter months needs to be finished off as early as possible, as much of your time will be occupied with sowing and planting as the month progresses. This is a good time to get the soil ready for planting and sowing, fork out any perennial weeds removing all the root system to prevent re-growth, hoe any annual weed seed that has germinated. Rake ground over to a fine tilthe

It is worth planning where vegetables are going and to rotate from the previous season. To do this effectively you need four areas:1) Brassicas 2) Potato 3) Legumes (peas and beans) 4) Others (onions courgettes, sweet corn etc). Crop rotation is very important; to plant vegetables in the same area year after year will build up pests and disease.

Planting out onion settsIf the soil is not too wet, towards the middle of the month onwards you can plant out onion setts. The first couple of weeks after planting out, birds can be a problem pulling the setts out, make sure you check over the rows and put the pulled setts back in the soil. To avoid this happening you can either put sticks amongst the onions or net the crop to deter the birds.

Seed PotatoTowards the end of the month is a good time to plant seed potato, dig the trenches and line with manure first.

If you intend growing carrot, make sure the soil is dug well and no stones in the soil which can cause the vegetable to divide. It is worth adding sand to any heavy clay to help with this. If you have had problem with carrot fly, consider making a low barrier from clear plastic about a foot off the ground surrounding where the carrots are to grow. Crops such as courgette, marrow, pumpkin; you can dig out a spade of soil and add some manure and replace the soil so you have a mound. It's a good idea to put in a short length of pipe such as old plastic downpipe, about 6" - 1ft long, place some grit in the bottom of the soil, put pipe in and cover with remaining soil. If you get a dry spell then you can pour water down the tube which will go straight to the root system of the plant.

Broad Beans under ClocheAny plants that were sown indoors in February such as Broad Beans, can be planted out in mid March. It is recommended to put under a cloche or fleece to protect them from harsh weather. Peas, broad bean, turnip, beetroot can be sown if the ground at the end of the month if it is not too cold or wet.

SeedlingsSow summer cabbage and cauliflower indoors for planting out in mid to late April. Sow indoor winter plants such as sprout, kale, cabbage, leek, and keep inside ready for planting out in June/July, when space is available. They are a valuable winter crop as they will stand in the ground until the following spring when warmer weather causes them to bolt. If you don't have a greenhouse you can put the seedlings on a window cill. To prevent the seedlings becoming "leggy" you can add a sheet of aluminum kitchen foil to the back of the seed tray which will reflect light back.

If the weather is warm and there are any annual seeds germinating, means you may be able to sow seeds such as lettuce, in the ground, otherwise it is worth sowing indoors to plant out in April.

Perennial plants such as asparagus and globe artichoke, look out for early shoots sprouting from their winter dormancy. Rhubarb crowns check to see if there are any young shoots ready.

Key dates:

If you have any advice or tips about gardening relating to this month contact us and if suitable will add to the page - please local to Haworth and the surrounding area only.






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