Looking back on my 2016 garden

Looking back on 2016

As it’s the last day of 2016 I’d like to spend it looking back on how I spent 2016 and what I grew.

Looking back: What we did in 2016

We moved house at the beginning of April so missed a lot of the sowing season. But we did manage to spend a lot of the summer planning and creating the garden so we could dive right in next year.

We now have two large raised beds and one smaller bed along the fence. We have room at the back of the garden for the greenhouse (which needs moving over from my parents house), a small shed and plenty of patio and fence space for pots. 2017 will be our first full year of growing at the new house and I am so excited.

Looking back: What we grew in 2016

We did manage to grow a few things in 2016:

  • Runner beans – I love runner beans. Both to eat and grow. I’ve grown them every year since I started growing my own veggies and they’ve never let me down. They are easy to look after and always provided a large crop.
  • Courgettes – My first attempt at courgette was relatively successful. We had large healthy plants and plenty of courgettes per plant. Unfortunately, I wasn’t on top of picking them and a few got very large. We ate them all the same and got a fair few meals out of them. We had two plants this year but for the amount we eat and the room they take up I’ll only be looking to plant one this year.
  • Sweetcorn – This was going SO well and then…. nothing. I don’t know what happened but the plants didn’t produce any cobs. Any ideas? I planted six plants in rows of three and I shook them to pollinate. I won’t be trying these again in 2017 anyway as the space taken up for the potential yield doesn’t fit my plan.
  • Chillies – We grew three types of chillies; Jalapeno, Cayenne and an unknown variety from the seed swap. There was one plant of each and they thrived. Each plant had tons of chillies. I want to try some new varieties in pots this year with the potential to attempt overwintering.
  • Tomatoes – We grew four plants of two different varieties this year in pots. The crops were plentiful but took a long time to turn red. Mr T&F said they weren’t very nice to eat either. I’m putting this down to a lack of proper watering and care. I’m determined to do better in 2017.
  • Potatoes – Mr T&F attempted some second early potatoes in bags this year. We got an okay amount of potatoes from the two bags but they didn’t last us very long. I’d like to plant a few more bags of different varieties next year.

Conclusion

It was a modest attempt in 2016 but some interesting learning curves. I can’t wait to get stuck into 2017 and have a productive garden. I have so many plans and ideas and can’t wait to get stuck in. 2017 is going to be a healthy and productive year and I want our kitchen garden to be a big part of that.

I’ll be starting my 2017 plans over the next couple of weeks and once they’re finalised I’ll be sharing them here on the blog.

What were your 2016 successes and failures?

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