Hopwood Polytunnel

So, as you know we have taken on a larger job at Hopwood Hall College. It's been a week since Andrew started, trying to get on his feet and get his head around a new culture (he's been out of FE for around 15 years) and the programme. Yet, the weather has been kind and he has with the help of some very fine students at all levels, and a supportive technician called Martin, to get some of the areas designated for students to work on. One of those is the polytunnel, which first and second years are taking over to practice growing undercover. The first problem though was the weed suppressing membrane that was down and several dead and seeded foxgloves. That had to come up, the second problem was that beneath it was a hard pan of clay and sand. First, second and third years got stuck in and the ground is now slightly more friable with the promise of well rotted manure coming our way to use as a mulch on one half of the beds so students can see the benefits of organic matter in the soil. There's been heated debates about rotavators in enclose spaces, discussions on compaction of soil, and organic vs non-organic. As you can see the polytunnel is looking better for getting back to the soil.

gardening, hopwood hall, life on pig row

We're even starting to clean the polytunnel cover taking off layers of mould to bring in more of that winter sun later in the year. We have peas to plant, some winter lettuce, pak choi and other wintering oriental greens.


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