London (change)
19 messages
27/02/2014 at 19:05

I have a new veg patch, due to start it off this year, and it is still very squelchy.  It starts to drain, we have another massive rain shower and then it is full of water again.  This must be such a common problem at the moment, why is it not being addressed in weekly Gardeners World emails?  What do we do about sowing seeds?  Will be at least a month before we can get started.  What can and can't we start off in cells in the greenhouse?  Some good advice would be very welcome.  We are not used to such damp conditions in the East of England!

27/02/2014 at 19:10

I'm in the South East and we have the same problem.  I'm going to start some stuff indoors and just wait until the veg patch dries up.  Compared to the rest of the country I think we've got it easy.  Try the what to do now on this website for suggestions.


27/02/2014 at 19:10

Just let it dry out still time to plant your veg later on you could add some sharp sand to the soil dig it in when drys out a little just give it time all will be well no doubt.

27/02/2014 at 19:11

If it's not too big an area, could you cover with polythene, leaving spaces for airflow like a polytunnel type of effect? It would warm the soil up and prevent further wetting. 

27/02/2014 at 19:25

Hi - I know this is about veg. but hope you won't mind if I ask about my wildflower

garden as that is pretty waterlogged too.   I've not been well with a persistent

virus for a few weeks, so hadn't been able to check up on what's been going on

outdoors for a while.  Today I was a bit horrified to find that lots of the things I

was hoping would survive because of the mild winter, have in fact disappeared -

some of them have been eaten and others, I think, have given up the ghost with

all the rain.  Can't see it being sensible to sow any wildflower seeds until it

dries up?  Would be grateful for advice!  Nutcutlet I'm about to PM you!  

27/02/2014 at 19:51

Good idea Andy19, also copious amounts of compost should help.  Our veg patch is mounded which helps with the water problem.



27/02/2014 at 20:03

I've loosely forked my veg patch so that on dry windy days it starts to dry out a bit.

27/02/2014 at 22:47

A common problem this year. My patch of garlic seems to be doing alright but it is surrounded by what could only be called a bog.

Have to pick a new area for my first early spuds as the preferred site is waterlogged most of the time.

02/03/2014 at 16:51

This is where my brassicas will be planted later on in Spring. Might get a crop of rice first?

 That line of stones is a land drain.

02/03/2014 at 18:10

Rice might be about right, No expert  

03/03/2014 at 15:35

My garden is absolutely waterlogged!! I've not been able to walk on it!! The greenhouse is an asset at times like this!!

03/03/2014 at 18:58

That pic was taken Sunday afternoon, water is gone down a fair bit now but soil is very wet still.

03/03/2014 at 19:03

Digging a trench/ditch alongside soggy ground will help to dry it out and lower the water table.  

When the land has dried out, half filling the trench with pebbles  and then topping up with soil will permanently improve the drainage - or you can create an open land drain as above.

If you can join it up with a ditch so much the better. 

03/03/2014 at 19:09

The land drain joins to another at the bottom of the garden. My problem is the black clay is so fine that drainage is slow. I'll catch up with you all later.

03/03/2014 at 20:16

Ever considered a pond???

I am so, so  sorry.

Obviously we have all found our low spots. ( unfortunately)_

We can only learn, from their mistakes.

and a bit more, love from mother Dove/ please.

We accept cake in blue.

In lue would not be acceptable . Sorry Dove

(hate spell check but thought that one was appropriate. So in blue it is!)

Wishes your way Dove.

And many more mins in the oven and more in the garden.

Remember the 6lb you just lost from your memory? Needs to be put back on in the garden. ( not sure. a few more sweat peas will cover it)

Lots of love ( no icon can expresses this?)




03/03/2014 at 20:46

We built a land drain two weeks ago to take run off from our patio, it works a treat. Without it our patio sat underwater for days.  We dug out the clay to a spades depth and replaced it with a layer of sub base, John Innes No 3 and pea shingle then planted some Ajuga into it which will form a mat to hold soil particles so they don't dirty the patio.  It had to look decorative as it comes before a small retaining wall onto the rest of the garden.  You can build this in a day.

03/03/2014 at 23:02

Fantastic Mrs G. 

I am so glad it worked for you. Your planning worked out and i would recommend it to anyone with lawn drainage problems. But do please remember when trying to drain a plot of land. The water has to go somewhere else after you have drained it. Please keep this in mind. There is no point putting drainage in if you are only going to flood your veg patch. (first hand experience,speaking here. You live and learn! That is twice i have used this, expression today.)


04/03/2014 at 10:03

Mrs G, do you have a photo of that we could see? id like to see how its done.

05/03/2014 at 09:29

Sorry our camera is broken, I'll see if I can use husband's phone later.  It  is basically a sump which allows the water time to drain, out of sight, so we can still use our patio without wellies on.

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