Organise a spring tidy up

If you’re looking to kick-start this year’s gardening after the winter, having a spring tidy-up is a great way to get into the spirit of things, and is a fun thing to do as a group.

Jacob and Bradley Harris in the garden

Whether you’re sharing a community vegetable plot or are simply growing a few things on your own windowsill, here are five things you can do to get ready for growing. The more organised and resourceful you are, the more money you’ll save.

  1. Get yourself organised and tidy. Sweep or rakes the garden plot of leaves and weeds – or make your windowsill sparkle. Then clean and put your tools somewhere easy to get to.
  2. Sort out your seeds. Seed buying is like food shopping; if you don’t make a list before you go then you’ll end up getting distracted and buying more than you need. Make a plan of what you want to grow. You can save heaps of money by sharing packets with friends. Read our tips on how to organise a seed swap.
  3. Collect growing containers. Start setting aside containers that you can sow or pot up into. Anything we use every day, like margarine tubs, fruit trays (often with ‘greenhouse’ lids) or plastic milk bottles, are perfect for growing in, as long as you pierce some drainage holes.
  4. Get some good soil. Whether growing in containers or an actual vegetable plot, you need to give your seeds the best start in life. This means getting the best compost you can afford, or improving your garden soil with your own compost or well-rotted horse manure. If you need advice on composts or soils then there is heaps of information available on the internet or books in libraries. The thing about gardeners is that they are always willing to share what they know. You could go and ask someone at your local allotment and guaranteed you’ll get more advice than you asked for.
  5. Don’t panic. OK, so there is always a lot to know and prepare for. The best advice we can give you here at Seeds Soup and Sarnies is to be confident and not worry if things don’t go to plan. Gardening is always a learning curve!

Collect cut branches and twigs more easily and quickly by shuffling your feet into them so they gather into a pile in front of you. It cuts down on the bending!

Seeds, Soup and Sarnies participant