My first Dwarf French Bean plant went out today (April 24th). As a test, before the other eight go outside! Started indoors, on March 27th, from seed, on my kitchen windowsill, wallowing in balmy temperatures and luscious sunshine, which has contributed to its very un-dwarf like size of 18 inches, within a month. Exciting to see, but not, maybe, from the viewpoint of a two inch square pot, so, out she goes!
I planted out in a repurposed tub, which acts as a perfect raised bed of approximately 10 inch deep with a 20x30 inch planting area. To protect from likely frost and 'young bean plant' loving critters, I staked with three canes, to create a growing pyramid for the climber, and then used a couple of shopping bags, to slide over the structure (weighted down with rocks at the bottom) to create a little DIY cloche! For gardeners who want a 'pretty' growing garden, this might not work, but for DIYer, re-use what you can, solve the problem, worry about the style later, kind of gardener, this worked perfectly. I sprinkled used ground coffee beans around the based, some say will help deter slugs, others disagree.
Sharing the tub (so far) are two strawberry plants, planted out last weekend, and eight radish plants, under halved milk containers, until the frost subsides. The soil is a mix of store bought general purpose compost, and home grown compost from my heap started last year.
So there you go, the next stage of my 'seed to table' experiment - growing veggies in an urban, slug infested, un sunny 'garden'. Lets see if I manage to grow my own food!