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Ministry of Agriculture Allotment & Garden Guide

Ministry of Agriculture Allotment and Garden Guide April 1945 page 4

Click image for
facsimile of page 4

April 1945

1 / 2 / 3 / 4

5 / 6 / 7 / 8


Ministry of Agriculture
Allotment & Garden Guides Index

January 1945

February 1945

March 1945

April 1945

May 1945

June 1945

July 1945

August 1945

September 1945

October 1945

November 1945

December 1945

The Allotment DVD
The delights of having an allotment. 15 programmes as seen on ITV. Suit new and established growers. Seasonal guide, top gardening tips, fascinating food facts and insights into what's really in those sheds! 

THE ALLOTMENT SERIES was first shown on ITV 1 West

Allotments UK and other related allotment links



 peas ready for sticking

  As soon as the peas begin to make their third pair of leaves, they will be ready for sticking. Even dwarf peas do better with a little support––a few twigs are all that is necessary. Before sticking, hoe the ground beside the rows and remove any plants, as they will be more difficult to get at when the sticks are in. Don't cross the two rows of sticks at the top, as this usually makes the plants get tangled in a mass; stick them firmly in the ground––upright. Trim the tops and put the twiggy trimmings in at the bottom by the larger sticks, so that the young plants can grasp them first before climbing on to the sticks.

man sticking peas

Peas - trim tops put trimmings at bottom



   Potato planting was dealt with in the March Guide (page 6). April is the month for planting varieties other than "earlies".


   Don't forget to sow them little and often, if you like them. Sow very thinly and there will be no need to thin the seedlings. A useful idea is to sow a few radish seeds in the drills along with onions, carrots and beet. Plant one seed every 6 in. or so along the drills; they grow quickly and show you the line of the drill before the other seeds germinate. Hoeing and weeding can then begin earlier.


   The Ministry's cropping plan provides for inter-cropping three rows of dwarf peas with two rows of spinach, if you like it. Gardeners on light soils, however, find that summer spinach runs to seed so quickly unless they kept it well watered.
   Some wartime gardeners may be a bit confused yet about spinach, spinach beet and seakale beet. Spinach may be sown both in spring (March to May) and late summer (August). Drills should be 1 in. deep and 15 in. apart. In autumn or early winter, spinach beet supplies leaves that take the place of spinach in autumn or early winter. It is also known as "Perpetual Spinach" and some people prefer it. The drills should be 18 in. apart. You can sow it in April and again in July.
   Seakale beet is also known as "Silver Beet" or "Swiss Chard." It is a dual-purpose vegetable. The leaf stems are large and white, but the leaf is green. You can cook the green part of the leaves as spinach and the white stalks and mid-ribs, stripped of foliage, may be cooked like seakale. You can sow this is in April too––drills 1 in. deep and 18 in. apart. Later on, you thin the seedlings as you would with spinach or spinach beet. With the last two, you thin out to 3 in. apart in the first instance, removing alternate seedlings after about a fortnight. With seakale beet, the first thinning should be to 4 in. apart, finally leaving about 8 in. between plants.


      Please see Mulch, Intensive & Lazy Gardening for alternative planting and growing methods requiring less space, less seed, less weeding, less watering, etc.

[ed. note] earthly pursuits urges everyone to avoid "artificials" (chemical fertilizers) if possible and practice sustainable, organic gardening.