P and A Gardening diary

Winter is almost upon us...

DECEMBER is now with us and as we busy ourselves with preparations for Christmas writing out our lists for sending Christmas cards and presents, it is a good time to reflect on the gardening year that has passed – and start to think about our plans and ideas for 2016.
Of course the joy of gardening is very much in the doing, as they say; digging, weeding, planting, sowing and come harvest time, collecting and storing the fruits of our labours. But it is also necessary to occasionally step back and review, so we can plan and design the garden for the new season.
This year seems to have been a good one for our customers in terms of the vegetables that have been grown and the flowers and shrubs that have blossomed in their gardens; maybe we have had the right balance of sunshine and rain here in Brittany? In our garden, the roses have been particularly successful and with the continuing mild weather of late, have continued to bloom with their orange and red hues creating some early winter colour. The soft fruits have had an amazing year, never before have we seen so many blackcurrants, redcurrants and raspberries… In the potager, the courgettes have also had an amazingly productive summer lasting until the early autumn and, after a poor performance due to blight in 2014, the rich and varied array of tomato plants have left us with a bountiful legacy of delicious and tangy chutney.
This time of year when the garden needs less attention is perfect for sitting down with a pad of paper and a cup of coffee and considering which seeds you will need and how you plan to organise the garden.  For example, if you have raised beds you could sketch out which plants you are going to grow and where, keeping a record for the next year to allow for crop rotation. On clear, sunny and bright December and January days it can also be a good opportunity to spend time cleaning the shed and the greenhouse, tidying up the trays and putting the last remnants of the year’s decaying foliage and vegetation onto the compost.
If you are thinking of adding a polytunnel to your Christmas gift list, then now is a good time to do so. A polytunnel will help you to significantly extend the length of your growing season and will enable you to grow lots of different flowers and vegetable plants even during the colder days. We are always happy to talk through your requirements and advise what is likely to be the best option for you; ordering and supplying to your home couldn’t be simpler… and who knows, at this time of year you may even be fortunate to receive a delivery courtesy of Santa’s sleigh and Rudolph the Reindeer … although that is the only thing we cannot guarantee this of course….!
Have a great December and a peaceful and enjoyable Christmas.
The P&A Team