The Cottage Smallholder

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The Bloggies, biodynamic gardening and the latest Cottage Smallholder Competition


Photo: Biodynamic Planting Calendar 2010

Photo: Biodynamic Planting Calendar 2010

I spent a happy hour in bed this morning – nominating all my favourite blogs for the Bloggies 2010. This is the most prestigious annual blogging award in the world and it’s now in its tenth year. You need to nominate three blogs in each category that you choose so I made a list of the relevant URLs and pasted them in. Lots of fun and a good positive start to the day!

Then the postman finally delivered my prize for the next Cottage Smallholder competition. As you know I’m using biodynamic techniques in the garden this year, and The Biodynamic Sowing and Planting Calendar 2010 by Maria and Matthais Thun is core to this system of gardening. In my haste to order a copy, I ordered two. So this is the prize for our first gardening competition of 2010.

Maria Thun has been practicing biodynamic farming for over 50 years and this calendar is the result of years of research and experience. There is also a handy pull out calendar for the garden shed. I have been reading as much I can on the Internet but there’s not a lot of information out there. There was an interesting experiment with tomato growing at Audley EndMagic Cochin visited the Elysia Biodynamic Garden and said that the vegetables were amazing. Chickens in The Road has a good post about planting by the moon here  – the comments are worth reading too.

I had thought that it would be only relevant to countries in the Northern Hemisphere but there is a chart enabling it to be converted all over the world. So if you live in the Southern Hemisphere you can enter!

To enter the competition just leave a comment below outlining your best gardening tip for saving time and or money. You may enter as many times as you like with as many tips as you like. I want to post the prize fairly quickly so the winner can take advantage of its advice regarding the best times for sowing seeds. So the competition will run for just eight days and close at midnight Sunday 17th of January and the calendar will be posted to the winner on Monday 18th of January.

I can’t wait to read your tips. Best of luck to everyone who enters.

  Leave a reply


  1. Cookie Girl

    My tip is: plant some fruit bushes as well as your other veg. They require minimum care, just some pruning at the end of fruiting, and tying back any long stems. When the fruit arrives, the more you pick the more you get ! I would collect a bowl of tayberries every day last summer ! It was great to have fresh berries and still have time to care for my other fruit and veg. Perfect !

  2. Further thoughts… Planting seeds directly in the garden sounds like a great time and money saver, but if I did that the slugs would get a feast and I’d get no veg. Starting seeds indoors/in a greenhouse takes time and space as well as compost, trays, pots, or whatever. Buying plug plants costs money, buying larger plants costs more per plant. I don’t know which of these saves most for anyone but me. But for anyone, buy plants grown as close to where you garden as possible so you don’t get a variety that will get a shock when planted because it has been raised somewhere warmer/dryer/wetter/less windy.

  3. brightsprite

    Ha ha – who’s a wally, then????
    I said in an earlier comment that sorrel is a good plant for the compost ….. doh …. what I meant was comfrey. I bet you were all thinking ‘brightsprite’s off her trolley!” and you’d be right!!!

  4. brightsprite

    Oh, homojoe, you win my vote – great stuff!

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