Square foot gardening is a concept of precision gardening where planting is planned on a square foot basis i.e. 30cm * 30cm.
I have decided to test this approach in a 15 square foot experiment, the aim being to have crops to harvest over a 6 week period from 15th May to 30th June, with five square feet for each two week period. A second crop will then be planted as the time comes.
The five crops in each case will be:
Late May: Spring onion, spinach, radish, turnips for greens and miniature lettuces.
Early June: Spring Onion, Radish, Spinach, Cabbage, and Beetroot.
Late June: Spring Onion, Cabbage, Beetroot, Dwarf Bean and Amsterdam Carrot.
Second Crops will be:
Plant around 1st June: Summer Chard, Summer Beetroot, Autumn Carrot, Spring Onion, Bush tomato.
Plant around 16th June: Autumn Chard, Summer Beetroot, Autumn Carrot, Spring Onion, Young Leeks
Plant around 1st July: Kale, Spring Onion, Young Leeks, Autumn Turnip, Autumn Beetroot.
The Early June crop may be followed by a third crop if time permits (after chard, beetroot and spring onion): candidates would be rocket, pak choi, Sicilian radish.
The aim is to generate small amounts of each crop on a regular basis, thereby eliminating gluts.
Sowing date precision, good germination in modules and immediate planting out of follow on crops will be necessary to succeed.
For further details on square foot gardening, from a US perspective, read: ‘Square Foot Gardening’, Mel Bartholemew (1981), Rodale Press, Pennsylvania. ISBN 0-87857-341-0