I had been feeling a little sulky about the hugelkultur as I thought it was heaving with slugs and they would eat everything planted there so I hadn’t started to plant any more brassicas.
Then last weekend I took a look and actually most of the brassicas were fine – although I forgot to take a photo obviously. So I decided to dig some more of my hugelkultur. I only dug the top section a little to loosen the compacted earth. This section had not grown anything last year and was still compacted from the efforts of the digger moving the earth. I added lots more alpaca poo and planted quite a few calabrese and cabbage plants.
For added security I put either coffee grounds, crushed egg shells or wool around each plant – all ‘waste’ products that we have on the smallholding. We will see which has the best slug-repellent powers.
Then I covered them with enviromesh pegged over water pipe hoops to protect them from the cabbage white butterfly.
The rest of the hugelkultur is doing well – potatoes, onions, shallots, celery and celeriac.
The straw/hay mulch is suppressing weeds and helping to retain water.
Hopefully in the next week I will be able to finish digging both hugelkulturs and plant the rest of my kale, cabbages, calabrese, squash and leeks. This should more than fill it up. I will also finish making paths around each hill.
What I love about the hugelkultur is that it was created from ‘waste’ products and is nourished by more waste – the hay/straw from feeding the sheep and from lambing, alpaca poo, coffee grounds, ground up egg shells and daggy bits of wool from the sheep fleeces. Everything goes back into the system.
Next I will turn my attention to the polytunnel, but before this I will take some photos of the other little food zones I have around the smallholding.