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Gardening Advice & Tips for Irish Gardeners

The Weekend Gardener (Part 16)

The extra lashings of maxicrop fertiliser have led to some big movements in the garden this week. Combine that with the above average temperatures over the past few days and growing rates have been going through the roof (of my garden netting!).

Daytime highs of 26° Celsius and night time averages of 15° Celsius mean my warmer climate plants were in their element , as a result my squash has gone from a sorry sight to a mass of bold trailing leaves reaching every corner of their raised bed.

Weekend Gardener

There has been little if any work to do in the garden itself. My biggest job at the moment is planning on what you do to the forthcoming harvest. Courgettes, broccoli and peas must all be picked early and fresh from the plants and are all best when consumed immediately.

Courgettes need to be harvested once ripe to avoid them rotting on the stems. Peas should be picked regularly to ensure continual harvest. Broccoli too has a narrow harvesting window as the flowering heads need to be cut from the plant before the flower buds open. This too will encourage a second harvest.

In terms of work this week, watering again was the only priority and with the irrigation system already set up there was not a lot of labour required. Each morning for 15 minutes the irrigation system watered both raised beds.

After that, every second day I would feed my squash and courgettes with 2 litres of diluted maxicrop. This feed has certainly helped as my squash is a lot bigger and healthier while my courgettes are developing well and the fruits are not rotting on the plants which had been happening in earlier in the year.

Otherwise work on the beds has been limited and it seems that from here until the end of the harvest there will be little to do bar feed, water and harvest my crops. So soon I will turn my attention to sowing for a Winter and Spring harvest with options of cabbage, carrots, spring onions, parsnips, salads and leeks all suitable for a late Summer sowing.

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