Starting your garden
1. Clean your garden thoroughly
- Light weeds: use cultivator. Pick up the weeds when they carry seeds (most do). Remove them; ask help if you don’t know where to bring them
- ‘Bad’weeds: use spit fork, go deep. Remove roots very carefully. Don’t use a spade! Cutting them makes them come back.
2. Make a garden plan
- Use an example; adapt it to the size of your garden (Examples: 8 (2 plots), 9a (1 plot)). Best is to plan squares of 120 cm by 120 cm, with 30 cm path in between.
- Choose which plants (vegetables, flowers, herbs) you want to plant.
- Find out which ones need manure. As a rule, root vegetables and beans do not need manure, even dislike it. Lettuce and other greens like manure. Pumpkins and courgette/zucchini need lots of manure.
- Plan the squares in your garden that need manure this year. Next year this has to be different; crops have to rotate.
- Fill in the squares in your garden plan, using 2a till 2d. Ask Henny for help if necessary. Often a plot can be used twice during a year. Some plants do not grow well here, because of the climate, the sandy soil or pests and plant diseases.
3. Prepare your garden according to your plan
- Using measuring sticks, a rake and a rope, make paths.
- If there is no manure heap in your garden, fetch as much as you need; mail to Charlotte Bijron how many wheelbarrows you used (cost: 1,50 per wheelbarrow). For one garden unit, 2 wheelbarrows usually are enough.
- Spread the manure on the squares that need it and work it under the surface (Henny can demonstrate the technique for this). The best tool for this is the spit fork.
- Never spread manure on the paths; this will only help weeds to grow. (This is why you first have to lay out the path structure)
4. Sow and plant at the ‘right time’
- Seed packages give advice about this; this is summarized in Henny’s seed list.
- For some plants there are only one or two months fit for sowing or planting.
- For other plants, e.g. lettuce, sowing can be spread; sow one square or even less at the same time; wait 2-3 weeks before the next sowing.
- Water in dry periods and fill the container by pumping after using water.
5. Weed regularly and keep your paths clean
- This also is necessary to keep your soil loose.
- It is compulsory in BTD to keep the path on the right of your garden clean.
6. Clean your tools after using them
You can use the brush hanging from the water pump, or the brush or broom in the tool shed, to brush the dirt off.