December I: planning 2018

Now that the season is pretty much over, my thoughts turn to planning 2018.

In my case that will involve minor tweaks to the composting and biodynamic spraying and a new plan for sowing. I am going to try a few experiments using precision square foot planting, sowing 50cm*50cm squares with crops for harvest at particular dates, to generate continuous small harvests rather than a few gluts.

I will only do this on one of my four main beds, leaving space for potatoes, squash, onions, PACA lettuce etc.

The crops I would like small regular harvests from during summer include: salad carrots, spring onions, dwarf beans, beetroot, young leeks, turnip, fennel, chard, mange touts, celery, spinach, radish and early potatoes.

Little and often harvests in autumn will include: fennel, endive, radish, turnip, chicory leaves, pak choi, rocket, cavalo nero, chard and carrot.

New crops for 2018 will include Borlotti beans, brussels sprouts and chicory hearts.

To help in the planning I have ordered two calendars:

1) The 2018 Maria Thun Biodynamic Calendar (ISBN 9781782504313)

2) Nick Kollerstrom’s 2018 sowing and planting lunar calendar (ISBN 9780572046941)

Author: Rhys

Rhys trained as a research biologist, working for a decade in the cancer research charity sector, before completing an MBA and working in management consultancy, technology transfer and early technology investment spaces, mostly working with UK academics to turn their scientific discoveries into value for society. AS a younger man, he was fascinated with mountains, both climbing them and ski-ing down them. Whilst living in Scotland, he completed a round of (then) all 277 Munros, the independent mountains over 3000ft originally complied as a list by Munro. He also spent his holidays representing the Ski Club of GB, as a Representative and Party Leader between 1990 and 1997. During that time, he found to his bemusement that he was able to predict, without understanding fully why, to a remarkable degree of accuracy, when good snow conditions would occur in the Alps, gaining an unworthy reputation for predictive genius in 1990 when predicting the evolution of the 1989/90 winter in Wengen, Switzerland for his CEO boss. He used this skill for the next seven years to ensure that he enjoyed powder snow pretty much every time he went ski-ing. An MD student he was training in Oxford also impressed his wife by taking Rhys' advice about when to take her to Italy in the mid 1990s! In recent years, Rhys has turned his mind toward how to grow prize tomatoes, winning several prizes in local and London shows and has, in the past 3 years, moved toward taking over a 50 square metre urban vegetable patch, which he has turned into a no-dig area since autumn 2014.

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