How to get veg quantities right and other questions......?

edited 30 November -1 at 1:00AM in Greenfingered MoneySaving
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ellas9602ellas9602 Forumite
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edited 30 November -1 at 1:00AM in Greenfingered MoneySaving
hello :hello:

Does anyone know of a chart or guide which can recommend the number of plants needed to produce enough yield for a family of 4? This was my downfall last year because I grew container veg we were nowhere near to self-sufficiency (although most plants did well and it encouraged me for this year).


I have been considering an allotment but something inside is stopping me! (I'm scared I think).

I do have a very large garden but an OH who is reluctant to have any of his lawn turned into a plot and we do have a big slug problem.

If I can get the quantities right but try to compact them I can probably win myself a little piece of lawn!


I should be able to get the quantities right for salad things but help with beans, carrots, peas, cabbages etc much appreciated.

Also any other ideas for keeping things compact and tidy? My OH's annoyance is probably my messiness (and he may have a point!) He hates seedlings on the windowsill, a strange array of containers all over the garden and this year I have saved our old bath for carrots! So he may just leave me (whilst I’m on this subject any ideas for filling the bath cheaply?)

Would a mini greenhouse tidy things up a bit? and could I grow veg inside the mini-greenhouse or is it just for seedlings? I’m thinking tomatoes and cucumbers, which didn't do very well for me last year. Or would they grow too big?

Sorry for waffling! (But it gets you like that doesn't it? My friends are getting bored of me!!):rotfl:

Thanks:T :T

Replies

  • Linda32Linda32 Forumite
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    Hi,

    I don't know of any chart but I'd imagine it would be a pretty hit and miss affair to be honest. These no way of knowing how many seeds will germinate and as you say the slugs come for their dinner as well.

    We've got a lottie, they don't take up as much time as you think. Its hard work of course, but there are obvious rewards.

    Myself and OH go to ours I'd say for an hour or so, one day every other weekend. Then during the light nights maybe an hour three times a week.

    There are veg which are bred as mini or compact veg specially for growing in small spaces or pots. Its the thing now, that everyone ought to be able to grow somthing.

    We did very well with a few plants of cut-and-come-again luttice (no I can't spell it) you don't harvest the whole plant only one the leaves and then they grow again.

    You can fill the bath with polystyrene chips to about half way up, buy cheaply off ebay or stationers. Then fill the rest with compost.

    You could grow mini veg on the floor of your greenhouse, but obviously as they grow these a size problem.

    Hope some of this helps.
  • ellas9602ellas9602 Forumite
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    Thanks Linda

    I had success with the cut and come again lettuce too last year and perpetual spinach worked really well too! Thanks for the tip for filling the bath, I have made my own compost for this year but don’t want to waste it! Carrots don’t like this anyway do they? Will they be ok in compost? What about soil from the garden?

    The chart I mean was something I saw last year but I cant remember where. It was really helpful and listed each veg type and then gave the amount of healthy plants you would need or rows you would need and how much that would give in lbs of veg to feed a family of 4. But you’re right it will be fairly hit and miss!

    I think I’ve decided against an allotment after all, Im still such a novice I think I’ll stick to conatainers again this year but try to also turn some garden into a plot for brassicas and legumes.

    I noticed on another thread you were talking about blueberries which I quite fancy trying, Do I buy these as plants or raise from seed? Is the soil type you mentioned easily available?

    Thanks again :beer:
    Donna x
  • Linda32Linda32 Forumite
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    ellas9602 wrote:
    Thanks Linda

    I have made my own compost for this year but don’t want to waste it! Carrots don’t like this anyway do they? Will they be ok in compost? What about soil from the garden?

    No thats correct, they fork off in all directions and make rude veg. :rotfl:

    Regarding using soil from the garden, you can but these a couple of points to consider, if you want to move the pot, it will be heavy. Dosn't matter about the bath though as I doubt you'll move that :D If your soil is stoney then carrots and other roots don't like it as they grow against it, then when they hit a stone the above happens again. Of course you could just not grow roots :confused:
    Also, if its acid soil then your veg really isn't going to like that. In wilkinsons you can buy a kit to test this, don't worry its easy peasy, I can do it so it must be. Cost is about £1.99 you put abit of soil in and swish around some water, wait for a minute or two then compare the colour with the chart. These only about 5 colours so its easy to tell.

    ellas9602 wrote:
    I noticed on another thread you were talking about blueberries which I quite fancy trying, Do I buy these as plants or raise from seed? Is the soil type you mentioned easily available?

    Thanks again :beer:
    Donna x

    Thanks :D You buy a bush from garden centres, cost about £7.00, they take a while to grow to that size so thats what your paying for,
    The ericasious /acid compost is easy to find and is located with all the other composts in garden centres / wilkinsons and will say that on the packet.

    If however, you have got acid soil anyway then your off to a good start.(see above) One other thing, the birds like them as much as we do, so remember to buy some netting (wilkinsons again), before they start to fruit. Its really easy, you just throw it over the top and it self clings.

    Best of luck in your venture, let us know
  • My local poundland had blueberry plants in last week...they had other stuff too..I think blackcurrants and raspberries :)
  • Linda32Linda32 Forumite
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    Lol, there you go then, thats saved us £6.00, thanks Natalie
  • Hi,
    I bought a blueberry bush from Woolworths last week for £1.99. Since then I have read somewhere that you need to have 2 so that they pollinate each other?
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  • Linda32Linda32 Forumite
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    http://www.!!!!!!.com/biz/kyblueberry/Varieties.html

    Not sure how to do links on here, but if you copy and paste the above into your browser, it should tell you somthing about self polination.

    I searched for it, blueberries and self polination or somthing like that, and it appears that some varieties do and some don't need two :rolleyes:

    I don't know what variety I've got and its dark outside now, otherwise I'd go and look :D
  • Every year I ask myself similar question, mainly bcos its so variable how things do from year to year (slugs, rain etc). However find climbing beans pretty preditable - I'd recommend a wigwam of 8 bamboo sticks (i use 2 metres) and plant 2 climbing french beans per stick. I use a speckled purple and green bean bcos they're delicious, stringles and easy to see and pick Keep the crop going by picking religiously every 3-4 days and make sure they don't run dry in high summer and yo'll have far more beans than you can face. This will use only 1metre square of your husband's garden!

    I generally plant 3 courgette plants that do the same job (compact ground use, plentiful supply to feed one family, so 2 courgette based meals a week in high season.

    For the rest of the veg??????????????????????????????????
  • Hmmm, being an almost novice, I would say that your Oh needs to be more understanding. I grew tomatoes and peppers in pots last year and we had in excess of 20 odd pots at one point (until I started giving them away as the plants grew bigger). It is not the plants that make the place look untidy, but the numerous pots, compost bags, tubs etc. I would pitch it to your hubby that having a plot would mean that everything is contained in 1 place and will look much tidier than lots of tubs/pots.

    By any chance, did you see the series "Grow your own veg" that was on a few weeks ago?? In it, they followed a Horticultural society as they planted and harvested a 3x3m plot all year around. It was very interesting and 3x3m is not very big. Perhaps you could put something like that towards the bottom of your garden and find a way to screen it off a little.

    Incidentally, I just read your post again and you say the lawn is "his". Technically shouldn't that be "ours"?

    My hubby also doesn't really like things to be untidy, but is more than happy to put up with it when it comes to homegrown, organic veg, especially when it comes to what the boys are eating. Small price to pay in my opinion.

    Good luck with getting hime to come around to your way of thinking and hope that you can find that chart, sounds interesting.

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