Planning your garden
How to store vegetables
Vegetable pests
A garden's microclimate
The prevailing weather conditions in confined or discrete areas are termed the microclimate. For example, there will be a range of environments within a small domestic garden that may be very different from those weather conditions prevailing elsewhere in the locality. Observe what is going on in your own garden and keep a careful record of the position and influence of the following features.

Your kitchen garden.

Soil is the most precious resource in your garden. Some inherit a well-tended soil, while others, particularly those moving into new homes, inherit a rubble-filled mass. However, any soil can be improved through time and effort. If you regard your soil as a living entity, you will see that essential plant nutrients are cycled by a microscopic army of inhabitants and larger worms, insects and grubs. All these creatures need air, moisture and food. Using manure, garden compost and other sources of organic matter is the key to sustaining this soil life and keeping the soil healthy.
THE BENEFITS OF DIGGING. Winter is the commonest time to dig, but soil can be dug at any time of the year if the conditions are right, Avoid working the soil when it is too dry and impenetrable, or too wet and sticking to your toois and boots. Clay soils may be best dug in mid- to late autumn to allow the action of frost to make the soil more suitable for final cultivation. Lighter soils are best dug In the spring or Immediately prior to planting the site. Done properly, digging increases the amount of air space in the soil, which in turn benefits soil-dwelling organisms and plant roots due to the increase in oxygen available, It also lets you add organic matter that will feed these vital denizens of the soil and aid nutrient cycling. Calculate how much organic matter you will need before you start. You should aim to add about 30 per cent of the volume cultivated. A 20m2 (220ft2) plot cultivated to one spade's depth will need 2.5 cubic metres (88 cubic feet) of manure or garden compost.
SUCCESSFUL PRUNING There are arguably two hallmarks of good pruning: a well-planned, careful and methodical approach to the work undertaken and a good working knowledge of the requirements of the plants that are to be pruned, The real results may not always be apparent for months and, in the case of trees, for years. With secateurs (hand pruners), always try to place the thin blade on the trunk/ branch side of the cut. This will result in a short stub and will also prevent a layer of damaged cambium tissue being left immediately under the line of the cut.
A successful vegetable garden begins with a well-organized plan of your garden space. Drawing a plan may not sound as exciting as getting outdoors and planting things.
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Once youve harvested your crops, you may find yourself with a big surplus. What do you do with all those vegetables? Well, you can and will enjoy them fresh; and you can also give a lot of them away.
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