Mr Stanford likes to give tips because he's 'spent more years than I care to count' growing vegetables and fruit. Duffus and I think his tips are good but the Director often ignores them.

Show Mr Stanford's tips for:

January

Clean your pots and seed trays - it may be boring but pests and diseases may have nestled in. Make sure your tools are clean and ready for spring. Get your growing plan written up in your Gardener's diary and visit your plot - record how it is looking, maybe the weather and don't forget if your scarecrow might need a new position and new view.
Plan to grow something new this year.

March

When it warms up a bit, plant your early seed potatoes. In warm areas, sow beetroot in the ground and rocket into pots. Brussels sprouts can also go in now and board beans under a cloche. Bees like chives so plant some chive plants, or sow some seed in April

April

Nurture a strawberry bed. If creating one, it needs to be dug deeply, well drained and well manured. For exisiting strawberry beds, place clean straw around and between the plants to provide mulch and conserve soil moisture - essential for strawberries.

July

Keep some water on your plot for any toads, birds and bees - check my wildlife care page for more information.
You can plant autumn flowering bulbs - autumn crocus - now which bees will like
Add mulch to your crops to help save water
sow beetroot, lettuce, radish, peas and think about space for spring cabbages.

August

Globe Thistle is loved by bees and butterfies and can be planted in the autumn - which is coming very soon!
Now is the time to plant seeds for over wintering spring onions and spring cabbages.
Keep weeding. Keep water for birds and toads on your plot
If you have a glut of courgettes -you can freeze or make Mabel's courgette cake

September

Plant Field Beans as green manure this month.
Time to harvest pumpkins - let them dry off in the sun for up to 14 days but keep an eye out for any frosts.
Get your shed winter ready - paint, clean, check roof.

October

Now is the time to order raspberry canes for planting in November.
Plant a few crocus - this will help the bees
Remember - toads and hedgehogs need shelter in winter - leave some sticks and leaves for them in an untidy sheltered spot.