Garden Activities (Spring 1)
Prepare the school garden for sowing and planting for the coming season.
- Spades, forks, rakes for working the soil
- Horticultural fleece and/or clear plastic
This will be weather dependent. Don’t tread on wet soil.
- If soil is workable, start to prepare for the coming season. If the soil is wet, just stick to planning for the time being.
- Mark out a system of beds. It makes organisation easier. Pupils can work from paths running round the beds. Optimum bed size – 1.2m wide by 3m long.
- Cover bare soil with a layer of garden compost or green waste compost, or leafmould.
- Dig this in if possible, but where digging is a problem due to heavy soil, or lack of suitable diggers, just spread the organic material on the surface. Worms and other useful creatures will do the rest.
- Cover part of the area with plastic, or horticultural fleece. This will warm the soil up and help early seeds and plants get a good start. Weigh down the edges of the covering very well, so that winter winds don’t blow everything away. An easy method is to bury the edges in the ground, using the garden soil to hold it all in place.
- Plan what you’d like to grow.
- Get your crop rotation planned.
- Keep seed pots and trays moist, not saturated. Lift pots daily. If they feel light, put them in a bowl of water for no longer than 2 minutes. If they feel heavy, no need to water. Weekend watering can be tricky. If you’ve watered on a Thursday, then last thing Friday, just put the tray in water for 10 seconds. Drain as usual. This should be enough to last the weekend.
- Remember to remove plastic covering daily – air for 5 minutes before replacing.
After germination, the covering is no longer required. It is not possible to say when seeds will germinate. It can be as fast as a week, and as slow as a month. Variations in temperature, watering and sowing depth will affect germination. But by week 3 you should have some signs of growth.