Posted by: sweetpea | March 9, 2006

Lottie plans

I’ve been reading various threads on Allotments4all trying to pick up some tips for this year.  So these are some of the things I’m hoping to try this year:

  • Growing Mexican marigold ‘Tagetes minuta’ around the periphery of my plot, and in areas infested with bindweed and ground elder.  Tagetes secretes toxic chemicals from it’s roots which are supposed to kill bindweed, ground elder and couch grass.  A natural weedkiller 🙂
  • Growing turnips in uncultivated but dug ground, as well as other green manures.  Apparently turnips are supposed to suppress couch grass.  Rye grass is also supposed to be good at suppressing couch grass so I might grow that again. Last time I grew it I let it go to seed accidentally!  But I did see on GW that one allotmenter was growing it specifically to make straw with for using as a mulch.
  • When I plant my potatoes I’m going to first put a layer of grass clippings, then 3 sheets of newspaper and then a layer of leaf mould, then the potatoes on top. This was a tip from GW.  I hadn’t realised that potatoes are quite greedy in terms of nutrients, which is probably why I’ve never had huge crops!
  • I saw a cool way of growing strawberries on GW.  It involved growing them in something that looked like a homemade animal trough raised off the ground.  I don’t suppose I’ll have time to construct such a thing, but I liked the idea all the same.
  • I want to do more companion planting this year, and grow more herbs, especially coriander.
  • I’m going to make an effort to mulch my veg with grass clippings this year to help keep the moisture in.
  • I meant to have a go at lasagne gardening last year but somehow didn’t get around to it.  Being as I’m planning on starting off most of my veg in modules this year it should be easier to give it a go.

I expect I’ll come across many other tips, but these will do for now 🙂



  1. The potato plan sounds like lasagne gardening to my untrained ear.

  2. What exactly is Lasagne gardening?

    Are you sure this isn’t some sort of April 1st wind-up like Panorama doing a piece on Italian Spaghetti trees many years ago? 🙂

  3. “The potato plan sounds like lasagne gardening to my untrained ear. ”

    I guess it’s underground lasagna gardening, as it’s all done in a trench, you cover the potatoes with soil after.

  4. You can borrow my copy of Bob Flowerdew’s book on companion planting if you don’t already have one 😉

  5. That would be great. I’m not sure if I’ve had it out from the library previously, but I’m sure I can pick up a few tips from it.

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