Our house in Telford went up for sale in the late spring of 2013. As yet it has not sold but the year began with the clear possibility in mind that we may not see the growing season out in the garden, so I decided to move as many perennial vegetables as possible from there to the Borderland garden.
As a result most of my time and effort were concentrated on developing the new garden and the Telford garden pretty much had to fend for itself. The time spent in the garden decreased accordingly – from 76.75 hours in 2012 to 17 hours in 2013.
|Time Spent in Telford Garden 2013 (hours)|
|Sowing seed / taking cuttings||1.25||6.5||0||0.25||8||48|
|Management / maintenance||0.5||2.25||0||3.25||6||36|
|Preparation of new areas||0||0||0||0||0||0|
|Total time spent 2012||76.75|
I continued to sow seeds for new plants and to take cuttings – some, or possibly most of which were then planted in the other garden. I did a certain amount of maintenance at the end of spring / early summer and in the autumn, mainly to tidy up and that was about it.
|Produce from Telford Garden 2013 (g)|
|Beans / peas||0||0||320||0||320||2|
For comparison total produce in 2012 was 40,390 g / 40.39 kg, and in 2011 it was 24,900 g / 24.9 kg.
- Produce from the garden was clearly much reduced – approximately one third of the 2012 total – and consisted in the main of fruit.
- Early in the year there were harvests of cooking greens and salad leaves.
- I did replant some Jerusalem artichokes, oca and mashua but most of the roots and tubers were re-planted in the other garden. I left the harvesting of most of these roots until after the New Year so the yields do not appear in the 2013 figures.
- I experimented with a new variety of runner bean but they did not do well unfortunately.
- I removed many of the perennial onion varieties to the other garden and therefore had quite small harvests from them.
Even though I had less time to spend in the garden and correspondingly lower harvests the output in terms of kg produced for hours of work increased from 0.526 kg per hour’s work in 2012 to 0.804 kg per hour’s work! That is very reassuring to me given my objective of obtaining as much yield as I can for as little input of time.
Of course one of the most important things about a garden is what it looks like. Even though that is not one of my main aims, I do want it to be aesthetically appealing and it does seem that leaving having a hands off approach and letting nature largely get on with it works for this as well.