With the lack of available space for new houses in our towns and cities such as Andover you will find that the gardens are getting smaller and smaller, some having gardens so small you would be hard pressed to swing a cat in them, although you should not be doing this anyway. So if you want quality sheds then you are out of luck unless you go for a very small garden sheds which can be as small as 4ft x 3ft. So even with this size of shed you can store a certain amount of bits and pieces for the garden nice and dry. Even so the cost to getting on the property ladder is still quite severe and many young people are having to stay with their parents longer than they would have liked, and I am sure that some of the parents feel the same. Many of these households, with the more traditional larger gardens, can have a decent size shed or workshop and are requisitioning these sheds for the offspring to give them some extra space for them to flex out and to relax. Many of these households are also adding garden buildings to the existing sheds as garden sheds tend to be packed to the gills as a matter of course.
I suppose having a smaller garden does make it easier to keep in order as it tends to be only a small garden lawn with maybe a small border of flowers or maybe a few shrubs however even in this situation you do need a shed to store the lawnmower in. A possibility is to share a shed with a neighbour for these sort of things as it not likely to be over used. Many people cover their little garden with paving slabs or timber decking which is more practical but I think it worth the effort to have a little greenery in the garden.
One of the latest ideas to come about is the use of vertical gardens by using the side of the property as a garden, Seems a little far fetched and I would assume this does not include a lawn as it would be very difficult to cut.
Patrick Blanc, a garden designer, has turn the idea of a Andover city garden with a wall garden on its head with his green fingered creations which has be known to climb as high as 80ft. Blanc, who had studied the rain forests and the botanical environment of them, is fascinated by plants which grow without soil, and he has patented his own special way for attaching plants to vertical walls using layers of felt. This means that it’s possible for most people to have their own gardens even when there is not sufficient land for a conventional one.
The Athenaeurn Hotel, in London, and the CaixaForum gallery in Madrid in home to some of these amazing gardens and the garden in Madrid covers a total area of 550 square yards (note YARDS not metres). Blanc, among his many other awards won the prestigious silver medal at the Architecture Academy in 2005.
The traditional vertical garden features the timber arbor and these have been popular for many decades however I think it’s unlikely that Blancs gardens will be appearing in Andover domestic gardens any time soon but it does give gardeners a little room for thought. However, the lack of space for a garden shed might make it a little tricky in maintaining one of these gardens.
Now that Spring is here you should be opening up your garden shed in Andover and getting ready for the warmer days. As well as that you should be preparing your garden tools from your garden shed ready for the planting of various seeds and vegetables because the sooner you do this the better. With the warm rays of the sun and, hopefully, the April showers you should be able to get a good crop of vegetables and with the cost of living going up week by week it’s never too soon. If you want to grow tomatoes it’s possible to grow them in your garden shed or certainly start them in the shed before planting them out in the garden. All you need is to clear the space near the shed window and put a bench, shelf or anything level near the shed window for the tomatoes to start. When the cold weather is finally open you can then think about putting them out in the garden, possibly in front of the garden shed where they can get the benefit of the sun but the shed will also shelter them from the wind.
Seed potatoes are something else which can start in the shed using some old egg cartons, cardboard ones are best. You need to put the broad end of the potato upwards in the egg carton so that the ‘eyes’ are pointing upwards. Ensure that these are placed in the best place in the garden shed so they obtain the most amount of light. As with the tomatoes you need to keep them moist so that they can flourish. When the potatoes tubers have shoots about 1 – 1½ cm long you can them move them from the garden shed to your garden for main planting.
This advice to utilise your garden shed and get a head start is great advice because leaving it much longer will mean worse crops than what you would hope to expect. The pre-warming of the soil in the early Spring in Andover enables new season crops to germinate earlier than normal. You will find that hardy vegetables such as beetroot and carrots will germinate when the soil temperature is about 46 degrees. If the shed is shading the area then this will enable the area to be able get to that temperature earlier than normal.
With sweet corn and beans it needs to be a little warmer, at about 54 degrees, and by covering the ground in the garden with plastic sheeting 6 weeks before sowing you will find that this can increase the temperature accordingly. The plastic sheet will add warmth during the day and help to reduce heat loss at night. Sandy free-draining soil is best for warming early so if you have heavy soil then maybe raise the garden beds for better results.
Clear plastic is best for this purpose however the addition of a layer of black polythene under the clear polythene will give the best results. Where ever possible try to utilise the area shaded by the garden potting shed as this will give the best results. About this time of year it’s also a good idea to make any repairs to your garden shed or garden fence and to rectify the damage which may have occurred to these over the winter. A general tidy up is also a good idea so you can see your garden in a new light, in fact a good spring clean is always good advice during Spring.