Edington and District Gardening Club – July meeting

On 2nd July we enjoyed a trip to Priory Farm in Edington and met with Lucy who leads in the vegetable and soft fruit garden. Production was at its peak with plenty of broad beans, beetroot, carrots, salads, herbs and sweet peas readily available for the 3 Daggers pub and Edington Farm Shop. Lucy walked us around the garden which is managed largely on organic principles and strictly on a 6 year crop rotation system. Lucy uses enviromesh on many leaf crops, to protect from insect damage, and soft soap washes to manage greenfly on the fruit. Red currants, black currants and gooseberries were so heavily cropping that the branches were weighed down.
We walked through the poly tunnels and saw the wide range of tomatoes in fruit as well as various squashes, cucumbers, peppers, chilli, courgettes and more herbs for the restaurant. We learnt about the weeding, watering and feeding regimes for the crops and the need for succession sowing for continuous cropping throughout the season.
The enemies are the rabbits, but they have found that by close planting the damage is reduced to the edges of rows. There were quite a lot of rabbits watching from the field boundary as Lucy spoke! It is a large site, but rabbit-proof fencing may have to be a future project and would undoubtedly pay for itself quickly in increased yield.
We saw the new venture developing……..cordon grown hops for the micro-brewery. The harvest last year was successfully brewed, including a brew with rhubarb syrup which proved very popular.
Lucy is an experienced and passionate gardener and we thoroughly enjoyed our visit. We look forward to returning next year.
Following the visit we all returned to the parish hall for tea, cakes and to update one another on current progress in our own gardens. Those thunder bugs are a nuisance……..
Our next trip, on the 16th July is to Iford Manor Gardens. Watch this space for an update next time. And if you would like to come to our club or any of our trips as a visitor or member, please see the website or ring for details. Remember our Plant and Produce show is on Saturday 5th September. Full details and entry forms on the village website or from Edington post office.
Sandie Lewis
Club Secretary
01380 830722