Wednesday, 26 April 2017

Sowed:
french beans Blue Lake and runner beans Czar.
pumpkin Crown Prince
and some more basil and coriander for the allotment plant scheme.

I would have sown some courgettes but the seed packets have mysteriously disappeared.  I wonder if I could have taken them to the allotment by mistake.  I am sure I had two packets of the same variety.  Perhaps I am going mad!
I hope this current cold snap doesn't spoil the apple and pear blossom.  It has been fairly dry so they might be okay, it seems to be the combination of cold and wet that seems to be the plant killer.
I wish it would warm up a bit so I could be putting things out. I've got nasturtium and celeriac that are outside in trays, waiting to go into the soil.  I have cleome and cosmos waiting to harden off.
I would like to sow some more flowers but my tiny greenhouse is getting crowded with overgrown tomato plants which can't go into the outside blowaway greenhouse until it warms up a bit.
I don't suppose I am helping the situation by sowing beans etc.

Monday, 24 April 2017



 A friend brought me some sweetcorn seeds from Thailand.

Thursday, 20 April 2017


This is one of the surviving beans I sowed in February, nibbled to death by pea and bean weevil.


I planted out the new plants beside the old ones.  They no doubt will be attacked too, but there isn't much to be done about it.



The onions are improving daily


As are the garlic and the leeks.


Predominant colour...blue, I do love the forget-me-nots at this time of year.


Monday, 10 April 2017

I gave the alliums a watering of ammonium sulphate solution because they were looking a bit yellow after the vicissitudes of the winter.  That is pretty much everything in the plot as there isn't much else at the moment.
The Brussels sprouts seedlings have come on well which is a surprise, as my previous attempts at growing any of the brassicas usually fail after the initial germination.  I planted them out among the garlic, the thinking behind this is that the garlic will be harvested by June-ish leaving plenty of space for the developing sprouts.
I hope...

I will have to get going on the seed sowing for the summer.  I've been given some purple sweet corn seed from Thailand, so I am interested in what they will turn out like.
The french beans I am planning on growing are Blue Lake and I am not sure whether I am going to bother with runners this year as the french beans are so nice. Although the runners are much more reliable than the french beans so I might put a few in.
And I am going to give Crown Prince pumpkin another go...last chance.


First harvest of the year...stewed rhubarb and ice cream with a meringue broken on top for pud today...mmm! To pot with the diet!

Tuesday, 4 April 2017

It's amazing what the difference of a few days of above 10C , makes to the garden.  Everything is looking stronger (weeds also, unfortunately, but that's gardening for you)

The onion family is looking slim, but perky

shallots

winter onions

The winter onions have struggled through with some losses, but the survivors have potential.


The late planted leeks from last year are filling out and might work for this year.


The row of broad beans sown in February.  Five survivors.  These are about the same size as the ones sown in seed trays (and kept in the shed) a couple of weeks ago.

New pear tree

Old pear tree
A regular reader (there is probably only one) of my little diary will remember me buying a second pear tree to provide a pollen-mate for the first one.  Last year the old tree's blossom was over by the time the new one had blossomed.  This year it looks as if the timings might be reversed. The new tree's flowers are wide open while the old tree flowers are still closed buds. There is probably only a day or two in it, maybe another sunny day might bring them together.

Planted the potatoes in bags and boxes this year to see if it works better than in the ground.


Certainly easier than all that digging trenches and earthing up.  Did I say I wasn't going to do potatoes this year?  I think I must say that every year, but I found a few leftover potatoes from last year, chitting all unasked by me, in the garage, so I thought "waste not, want not".


I came across the little soldier lounging in the sun under an apple tree, on a soft bed of dried leaves. Shame the orange peel spoils the idyllic scene. Just hope there are no enemies lurking in the shrubbery..he's just not battle-ready.


Monday, 13 March 2017

Even the cleome seeds have decided to make a push, the second sowing and,
surprisingly, the first ones which I thought were gonners.


Just shows, you can't rush these things, however keen you are.

Sunday, 12 March 2017

 The leek seeds decided to come up after all.  I had just about given up on them since they were sown 5 weeks ago.  I think I must have buried them too deep.






























Sadly, I think I have fried the few sweet peas that managed to germinate.  They were in the plastic greenhouse inside the greenhouse and this morning the temperature was in the 40s when I opened it up.  A reminder to check the plants earlier in the day, it only takes a sunny hour first thing in the morning to heat everything up.
I have now re-installed the automatic window opener.  Signs of spring!


Oh well...back to the drawing board...























Down to the plot later to do some weeding and to hopefully burn the ivy that was pulled off the hydrangeas the other day.  It has rained a lot since, so I do wish I had put the bags in the garage to keep dry, but no, laziness struck me.
However, it's amazing what you can do with firelighters and copious quantities of paraffin.

I noticed when weeding around the winter onions that the sets that were started inside in modules, have over-wintered better and look much sturdier than the ones that were planted straight out.  It looks like it might be a good plan for future years.  Of course that is at this stage in early spring, it could be that it will make no difference in the long run.  It will be interesting to see whether it does.


The ones at the far end are the sets started in modules.