Plans for the garden: 2013 wishes

A garden never stands still, never trust anyone who says their garden is finished, likewise never trust anyone who doesn't have a book in their house. This may seem an odd comparison, but it is often what we read as gardeners that drive us to make changes. Next year, on our 1/4 acre we will be integrating our sweet pea trial into the early stages of a bee bank but this is just the start.

Runner beans growing strong. Plans to get more into your larder.

We will also embark on celebrating the grow your own movement in our Dig for Victory garden as we attempt to follow the planting schemes from the second world war. We hope that this may improve productivity. We will be growing on a small scale to see whether we can produce bulk quantities for the kitchen and larder. 

Wonderful pots can make a garden.

We also want to finish off some of the hard landscaping. 2012 has been a bad year for laying paths and rebuilding structures. We simply haven't had the weather. The idea of building new paths in the rain is rather a pointless task on a hillside, hardcore goes in, hardcore is washed away and brick paths sink in the slump of mud. We also want to get some cold frames made, we've had some old window panes hanging around the garden for two years now and it seems right after we move the raspberries that the frames go there, running beside the glasshouse. We are moving the raspberries for the simple reason that they don't like it there and will probably be more happy lower down in the garden. They will be in the deep, lovely soil next to the rhubarb come summer.

Building your own coldframes from old windows.

We're also returning to an early favourite potato here, the Shetland Black. Two years ago, a short row gave heavy yields of medium sized spuds. They're not for everyone as some people can be funny about a potato that is purple on the outside and inside. They look like blue stilton when cooked and they taste like no spud you will ever eat. They are the ultimate chip butty.

Shetland Black potatoes are one of the best spuds out there.

We also want to increase our stock of bee friendly plants and will be sowing Cephalaria Gigantea.

Bee friendly flowers that create maximum impact.

We're still wondering whether to plant climbing hydrangea behind the house, now we have discovered we have a cellar at the back of the house, may need to explore this first before planting anything.

The climbing hydrangea may never be planted.

2013 promises to be a year of many possibilities from our sweet pea trial to our Dig For Victory plans. There will be much to do with a bee bank and more new hedges still need to be planted.