Mice and voles are cute furry little creatures until they find a vegetable grower and then there is a conflict of interest! What havoc they can create – in the seed trays and in the vegetable garden. How many times over the years have we watched for the first sign of the broad beans and peas only to find that they have been munched by our friendly mice and voles and not a single one is left to grow.
This year I decided to get one step ahead of my furry friends. Beans and peas really don’t like having their roots disturbed so planting in a seed tray and then pricking out is not an option. So I have planted broad beans and french beans in little newspaper pots. A good use fo the excess newspaper and a biodegradable pot that can be popped straight into the row in the vegetable plot. I find that if you put tow or three little newspaper pots in a 9cm pot then fill with compost and plant the beans they are easy to move around and the plastic pot reduces the amount of water that is lost through evaporation.
So here is lovely little broad bean plant ready to go into the ground with a healthy root system and a few minutes later happily planted!
Not that there is any competition in the household but I am hoping that ‘my broad beans’ starting life in their newspaper pot will crop far earlier than those planted by the man of the house directly into the ground – we’ll have to wait and see!