GROW BAGS

Whenever I go to any garden centre or a DIY shop I see grow bags for sale. I think I only bought them once, the first time I wanted to grow tomatoes in them in my old greenhouse. That must have been at least 15 years ago. I wasn’t happy with them at all – they were very flat and even though it said that you can put 3 tomato plants there I found that the plants didn’t thrive. Either it was the quality of the compost or there wasn’t enough of it. I remember I wanted to put a short stake beside my tomato plant – no good, the bag was so thin the stake couldn’t support anything.

I have read recently in one of the gardening magazines that to overcome the problem with grow bags (obviously there is still the same problem with them – too thin) we should put two bags on top of one another, open the bottom one to expose the soil and score the bottom of the top one so the roots can carry on down – are you still with me?

The problem doesn’t get solved this way! I’ve got a solution, a very simple one.

After I’ve emptied the mushroom compost from one of the sacks I mixed about two-thirds of my own compost (it has been quietly rotting away in the corner of the garden) and one-third of the already mentioned mushroom compost; put this mix into the old sack and seal the top with a tape. Lay it flat on the ground, level the compost and insert two grow rings (they have a jagged edge which cuts the plastic exactly the size of the ring, an outside ridge which is for filling up with water so it goes directly to the roots). The bag is much chunkier than even two grow bags on top of one another and I know what quality of growing medium is inside.

It fits exactly into the gap between the two benches in my greenhouse but if need be it could quite easily stand outside on level ground, in a sheltered spot for the tomatoes to enjoy the sun.

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