Spain’s May gardening news

By Clodagh and Dick Handscombe

Web site capability

Readers will have noticed a change in the layout of the website and an improved process for searching the archive of postings to bring up a listing of articles relevant to your topic of interest. The updated software also makes it easier to post things including photos. To take advantage of this we plan from May onwards to make two postings a month. Firstly an interesting article and secondly a Gardening News page in the form of a news letter. This is the first.

Spain’s spring gardens

Even gardens caught by frosts at the time of the February and March new moons now look good with spring annuals perrenials trees and bulbs, especially lilies,  in full flower. But off course now is the time to start to deadhead weekly to stimulate repeat flowerings and to increase the frequencies and volumes of waterings especially of recently planted plants. This months article is about mulching to,among other benefits, reduce your water bills.

An awsome break from gardening

A few weeks ago Dick went up to Riba Roja Del Ebro to do a spot of fishing with a local friend vegetable growing and ace fishing guide and coach Nick Shattock. What a three day fish it was. 17 fish weighing 630 lbs in total with the best beating personal bests.The Photos show Dick with his 36 lb carp and the 110 lb catfish!. If you would like a similar experience whether an experienced big fish angler or a novice like Dick contact Nick Shattock via 680-820-728 or Day trips are possible with pickups from train stations and hotels on the coast from Ampora to Tarragona.

110 lb cat fish

Weeding the veggie plot

After the alternate hot and wet spells  of late April and early May No fishing this month as thousands of weeds have self seeded caused  by our huerto  – allotment – of soft fruit and vegetables being surrounded by abandoned agricultural land and irrigation water arriving via seed filled channels. A big  difference from fifteen years ago when it was almost impoossible to obtain a spare piece of land. Luckily someone invented the double sided hoe called a ”swoe’ a few decades ago. So there is plenty of material available to make a new compost heap.By the way composting needs care in Spain. However details of how to make good compost arfe included in our books ‘Your Garden in Spain’, ‘Growing Healthy Vegetables in Spain’ and ‘Growing Healthy Fruit in Spain’. Click our books for info re the books.

Cordoba patio festival

The annual Cordoba Patio Festival is still on for a few days. It is always worth visiting especially if you have a town house.

Granada gardens

Granada has more than the gardens of the Alhambra and Generalife to see and fortunately the UK based company Go Granada! has organised two three day tours from 5-8 July and 6-9 September to include also seven gardens including  ‘carmens’ hidden by hogh walls in the old city.The tour leader will be the officiaL Granada tour guide Nicholas Borjesson who was the official guide for Michelle Obama when she visited Granada in 2010.

Dick is joining the tour to give an after dinner talk on the first day, support the group throughoput and chair a ‘Gardener’s Question and Answer’ session on the last afternoon. He will explain Granada gardens from the perspective of Mediterranean gardening with its hot summers and cold winters. For full information look at, email or call Lucy on 0044 882690. Look foirward to meeting some readers their.

Have a great month gardening. Having been for a five hour mountain walk this morning even the mountains are full of flowers at this time of year.

(c) Clodagh and Dick Handscombe May 2011.