The Veg Diaries March 2021 - it begins....

In a year where it feels like we are still waiting, waiting, waiting; suddenly the waiting has stopped and I am getting ready for the new growing season for vegetables.

Last year my vegetable container garden was successful in producing quite a lot of vegetables and I managed to maintain it over the year.  I have written previously that I am not good at motivating myself to grow vegetables so if I manage to stay interested and look after them I count that as a major success.  It is of no surprise to anyone that the more you look after your plants the better they do.  I would say 'lesson learned' but it is so obvious it was a more a lesson I needed to stop ignoring.
The start of Spring sees the container garden looking a little worse for wear but not beyond redemption.  I need to say there are some carrots still overwintering in a couple of the pots which will be used very soon.  They seem to have stored themselves well which has been a bit surprise for me.  Think more unintentional than deliberate storage exercise.
This year I have started by setting up the Vegebag I have been sent to trial.  I have not paid for this item but I am under no obligation to write about it or say anything nice. 
It 'pop' up nicely but the edges are soft so you can lean into it to fill with compost and plant up.  I have used Coco & Coir compost, which also I have been sent.  I have previously bought this compost and I am a big fan of it so I had no hesitation in agreeing to trial some which means I have not paid for the block I am using this year.  It arrives as a block that you add water to and within 20 minutes you have beautiful soft compost.  I have planted Broad Beans 'Robin Hood' in this one.  The Vegebag should help protect the beans from mice (of which I have frequent visits) and other pests.  Rain and light can get through the mesh, I am hoping that it will keep blackfly off too.  I will keep you informed.
Along with the Coco & Coir Compost I have also been sent some Coco Boost to try this year.  This is peat-free as are all their products and includes added nutrients.  Beans are quite hungry to get started so I am hoping that this will give them a good start.  I just mixed this in with the main block of coir compost and it made just the right amount I needed for the VegeBag.  
I then set up my PlantBox living wall system that I have been sent to trial.  This too I have not paid for but my words and opinions remain my own.  It was very easy to put together and I have attached it to my outhouse door.  There are two reasons for attaching it here.  Firstly it is a dull space that needs a bit of joy adding to it, secondly it is within quick reach of the back door.  I intend to grow some herbs in this and we all know that the closer to the back door you grow things the more likely you are to use them.  Thirdly (three reasons, there are three reason why it is attached here), thirdly it was easy to attach to the wooden door.  I shall be planting it up over the next couple of weeks as we get beyond the frost zone.  I shall report back on how it develops.  The PlantBox has an internal watersump system so that you can keep the plants easily watered.  There are clever little indicators so you can keep a check on the water levels.
The Broad Beans are sown and the Aubergine Green Knight are sown in the propagator.  I bought these seeds from Mr Fothergill and I am looking forward to sowing the courgette collection.  It feels a little early to sow those just yet.
I have also decided to try and grow lentils today.  I bought some lentil seeds from Franchi Seeds and let them soak overnight before sowing.  I swear one of them is looking at me.....
So exciting times ahead, I am already looking forward to this year's produce which bodes well for keeping me engaged in growing it.  I will keep you updated as to progress.

Stay safe all and be kind.

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