Helen's Garden Renovation Project

Saturday 5 May 2012

Antioxidants in place

Filed under: Progress — Helen @ 5:26 pm

I am pleased not to have to water my plants, and it makes me feel better to know that all the tuition work I am doing is not taking me away from the garden, but I have missed my garden so much. It’s all getting on with what it does best, with some help from the bees, and I feel as if my friends are all going out and having fun without me.

This afternoon it looked as if it was going to be dry for about five minutes, so I went out to mow the lawn. But it was already starting to rain, very lightly. So I planted the blueberries instead. I was just about to dig a hole when I realised I didn’t know how far apart to plant them, so I went inside to look up the spread of blueberries on the Internet. It’s up to 24 inches. So I found I could get two rows in between the edge of the lawn and the greenhouse. I have planted them 12 inches from the lawn edging and 12 inches from the greenhouse base, which makes them 28 1/2 inches apart. That should be fine. If not, then it’s supposed to be possible to take cuttings from blueberries, so I can make some new plants and put them somewhere else.

The levels are a bit difficult. The greenhouse base is a few inches lower than the lawn edging. I decided to plant the front two blueberries at the same level as the lawn edging and the back two blueberries at the same level as the greenhouse base, and have a ridge in between, rather than a gradual slope which will make watering the higher blueberries difficult. If the soil does not stay in place, I will use a line of small rocks to keep it there.

Four blueberries planted in a square

Four blueberries planted in a square

I like the way that although they are only about nine inches high, one of them is doing flowers, and the other three look as if they’re trying.

Blueberry flowering

Blueberry flowering

I don’t know whether the blueberry that is flowering is better established than the others, or is an earlier variety. I may have to wait until next year to try to decide which one is which variety.

Not only are blueberries pretty little plants with excellent autumn colour, but this year their fruit appears to be an extremely fashionable source of antioxidants. They may not be as fashionable next year, but they should produce more berries, which will make up for it.

And then it stopped raining for long enough for me to mow the lawn as well.

I keep forgetting to mention that I bought some Rootgrow from B&Q because Monty Don used it to plant something. It’s a type of fungus that works symbiotically (i.e. it plays nicely) with the roots. Unfortunately it doesn’t work with rhododendrons, blueberries or heathers but it should work with everything else I am intending to plant. A packet of Rootgrow is not very expensive but it seems that you need a good hefty dose of it if you are planting anything of a reasonable size.

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