There’s not much going on in the garden at the moment… some leeks that I planted out very late are growing and the weeds never seem to sleep, but generally it’s all quiet. At this time of the year it’s easy to leave the vegetable patch to get on with things and allow it to develop its own layer of vegetation that will need dealing with in the spring. This year, however, I have decided that I want to avoid as much weeding as possible prior to planting, so I have started to mulch.
Despite some blustery weather yesterday, I got outside with a length of MyPex that had been hanging around the shed for a couple of years and covered one of the raised beds. Until a couple of weeks ago there had still been nasturtiums flowering in this area, but the first frost killed them off and it was all looking rather sad. I dug the edges in to secure it, but because I know how easy it is for a sheet of mulch to get blown about, I also weighed it down with planks and pots, stones and a couple of spare log rolls. The MyPex excludes the light, but allows water to penetrate, so the vegetation that was left underneath should rot down nicely over the winter and provide lovely organic matter for the plants that I put in when spring comes around.
Unfortunately I only had enough MyPex for one bed, but I do have some black polythene mulch that I am going to use to cover a second bed. The wind got up whilst I was working yesterday and so I decided not to battle to get this done, especially since there are some rogue brambles to deal with first. For the time being the weeds can grow as a green manure… they will turn into great compost once the mulch is finally down The main drawback of this approach is that mulch provides a great habitat for slugs and snails. I will deal with this by feeding them to the chickens when the mulch is lifted in the spring – you can plant through it, but then in our wet climate, you lose all your plants to molluscs!
Today there has been a mixture of sun and very heavy showers, so no gardening. We were lucky to have a rainbow though, which made me smile and grab my camera: