Yesterday’s stunning weather gave us a chance to get out in the garden and make another of the improvements we’ve been looking at for some time – extending our strawberry patch.
This summer we’ve grown about 10 strawberry plants in tyres, and we’re still picking a handful of berries every couple of days. However we haven’t had enough to stop us needing to buy the occasional punnet, so we decided to prepare a bigger area for next year.
Since the current strawberry patch seems to meet the plants’ requirements for warmth and sun, it was logical to just extend it to run the whole length of the main vegetable garden above. Two 2.4 meter macrocarpa sleepers form our edging, and we’ve made the whole bed about 80cm wide. That means we can fit the existing tyres inside, so we don’t have to disturb the producing plants, but can easily transplant them once they finish fruiting.
Inside the bed, we’ve got thick cardboard to keep weeds out, then we’re making use of the waste from our animals by layering wood chips with chicken poo mixed in and hay from our rabbits. We’ve also used the first of our homemade compost from last year, and a layer of store-bought compost is on top.
It’s great seeing what could be considered as rubbish instead being used for good growing, and we’ve already pulled the longest runners across from our existing plants to take root. Today we should plant some runners that J’s mum has given us, so the whole bed can hopefully be solidly established by wintertime.
While J loves a wide range of fruit (and particularly stonefruit), strawberries are one of the few fruits that I particularly enjoy. We’re both looking forward to having an abundant supply of our own in future!