Saturday, 21 April 2012

Making Money go Further in the Garden

Hello all you week end gardening types out there, are you just like us? Planning, tidying, cleaning, planting, getting soaked, drying off, getting soaked :) Glorious rain at last and plenty of it, no grumbling allowed I say.

After living in this house for about three years and doing very little to the garden apart from weeding and tidying we have made the decision to engage with it and completely re model it so we can really enjoy it. We have been thinking about this project since last Autumn, when I posted dear reader how we hoped to get to grips with our generously proportioned garden, which let's face it needs just about everything doing to it. 

Firstly we have spent the longest time thinking about how we want our garden to work for us, what we want it to be and how best to start the first steps towards this. Luckily I have been able to recruit some help from a 'real' gardener who very kindly came to our house and identified every plant and tree we have. From this we developed an understanding of what we would really like to keep and what definitely has to GO.

The stucture or bones of the garden has taken us a long time to work out but we are finally happy with it. And so we are off. We estimate it will probably take us this year to get the structure in place, then we can plant it out next year. Of course we aim to create something wonderful, but equally we have our thrifty mind set on and want to make our money stretch. Each small project in the garden will have to be saved for and we will be searching high and low for bargains. Naturally I hope to grow most of the plants myself. 

Our first purchase is a green house. I scoured the internet and for a short time it looked like we were going to have to find about £500 even for a small one. But lady luck was on our side when quite unusually I was flicking through a local free magazine and saw an advert for a whopper of a green house for £100. We have had to take it down and transport it a short distance and we're a bit nervous about putting it back up, but we are thrilled. The couple who sold it to us have been very sweet and have given us all the pots and racking from the green house as well as some strawberry plants.
This is the site for our GH.
And this is how it looks at the moment. (The bricks behind this frame we picked up from free cycle this week and we're using them for our pathways and edging.)

Mr.S&P happily cleaning the base of the GH.
These are some panes that didn't make it, but we will replace them with some plastic sheeting which I'm sure will work almost as well and will be cheaper.

Once this is up and running we can plant our vegetable seeds and prepare the raised beds for the seedlings. We hope to grow as much as we can this season and any extra we will either give to friends or sell on. 

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