Save time, garden clever 

Time is precious and the best gardeners use it wisely. They don’t waste time by sowing seeds out of season, or waiting too long before dealing with weeds.

I explain this throughout my diary (use code JH17 to get £4 discount when buying online). which is centred on efficient use of time. It helps you to gain time by recommending each job in its best season, when its quickest to accomplish, with reliable results so that you don’t need to redo any jobs. 

Save money too

Sowing too early means a waste of time and money. Beware recommendations to sow seeds before they are likely to grow successfully, in spring above all, when later sowings catch up and crop more strongly. Timely sowings mean your harvests go on for longer and you buy less food. 

Weeding, no dig

Timely weed strikes and mulches save hours of weeding. A particular benefit of no dig is higher populations of soil fungi, which help to discourage germination of weed seeds. If there are many perennial weeds such as couch grass, you need a year of covering with light-excluding mulches such as cardboard and polythene: you can grow some crops through these, more on this in week 5, and this video:


Plant health

Surface mulching improves soil health, by ensuring that soil’s inhabitants are well nourished and protected. Plants grow more strongly and you save the cost of time-consuming failures. The extra soil health in no dig translates into less pest damage, also when seeds are sown at the best time.


Harvests in all seasons

Start your harvest season earlier by using fleece (row covers) over early plantings, in March and April above all, and continue sowing each season’s best seeds for harvests all year. The diary includes timings and methods for winter vegetables too, with advice on simple and cheap ways to store them.