Saturday, February 13, 2016

White Clover in the Spring

There'll be beds ready to plant by early March, inshallah. But most plants (tatties excepted) will go out in May after the last frosts. So I want to get ground cover to keep the weeds away, fix some nitrogen, and help my much-shuffled and sodden soil to recover. Also to provide some cover for the frogs to resume their slug hunting duties.

What I want to do is to cover the entire allotment in something to cover the ground whilst I'm planting. Some places just want to be rested until I plant out the hedgerow in autumn, or the winter and spring vegetables later in the summer, so I need something to feed those areas and keep the weeds at bay (somewhat). I'll sow some phacelia, but the default plant is going to be white clover, (Trifolium repens). I remember local authority green spaces in the 60s used to be mostly grass, but there was a lot of white clover, too, and bumblebees loved it. In fact I got my first bee sting from one of them.

By Forest & Kim Starr, CC BY 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=6158742
According to greenmanure.co.uk, 250g will cover 167m2, so 500g will be more than enough for my plot's 300sq yards. I'm getting that on eBay, a snip at £5.88, which includes the postage.