Last Post 1239 days 13 hours ago
31 December 2009 17:00:08
No severe wind problems.
Just after lunch i managed to have a look in the garden shed to check on some seeds for 2010.Plans with the roots beds to use Spinach[Perpetual spinach] Carrots[James Scarlet] Turnip[Purple top Milan]Beetroot[Boltardy]Swede[to be decided]Parsnip[White Gem] Both turnips and sweds final placings to be checked.Either sown with the roots or the brassicas.That will be most of the roots planned for the new year including the potatoes,and they will be from Duke Of York,British Queens,and Roosters.
Once the start of January comes then Spring will be in the air in a short while and the bad weather will eventually move off [we hope].Good luck to all the gardeners have a great New Year..
30 December 2009 22:31:44
So far so good.
Took a quick walk down the garden to check on the tunnel especially to make sure all is ok there.So far so good with no damage caused.The wind is still bad with sleet falling and between both the real bad cold is in the air.Impossible to plan anything for the garden tomorrow as yet,but if at all possible the tunnel will get a visit to check on things.Seeds for the new year will be given a look over in the garden shed also tomorrow at some stage.
30 December 2009 11:39:39
A washout this morning.
Looking out at the garden earlier and with the state of todays weather the only way out will be to spend some time indoors.Mainly in the seed room and also to look through some garden notes and vegetable books.Now that we fast approach the end of the year,then soon the stretch will come back in the evenings and we will all get back on track with outdoor gardening.
29 December 2009 21:45:54
If you have stoney soil which is not the best of friends with parsnips when growing them but would still like to grow some,then what you do is make holes with a small bar about 60-90cm deep [2-3ft] when the soil is fit to do so and spacing each hole 30 cm apart.Fill these holes with moist wriddled compost and firm it.Sow 3 or 4 seeds at each area and cover them with .5 of an inch of wriddled soil.If you sow them to deep they will more than likely not grow.When they show a little then thin to 1 good strong seedling at each sowing area.
29 December 2009 15:09:07
Getting ready for 2010.
If possible finish digging the vegetable plot this month.
When digging is complete,lime the plot intended for brassicas if needed.
Use some cloches to warm up the ground that will be used for sowing in about 2-3 weeks.
Sow some early cauliflower indoors in heat [propagator].
Indoors sow,broad beans,leeks,onions,[spinach and peas.]
In late January get some seed potatoes,and put them on trays to sprout.
They will be some of my plans for January with the vegetable garden.Some tomatoes have been started in the seed room.
28 December 2009 18:03:25
We had a very cold day here today with the greenhouse down to -3.5 deg,but at least staying dry.This allowed some work to be done in the vegetable garden area earlier today.The clay that was left there earlier in the year was levelled off a little.Having covered that small area earlier yesterday with some mypex covering all went well.Some more clay along with compost or manure will be added to that lower area and hope to start some herbs there in the new year.
27 December 2009 17:01:49
Getting back to normal.
Now that we are almost back to normality with the weather,we can look ahead to spring time.I took my usual Sunday stroll around the garden to take a look at the state of the place after the snow.The cold spell is still in the air but we will put up with that if at all possible.Spent about an hour in the vegetable garden looking over things for the coming year.The compost heaps are doing well and hopefully will be called upon before to long.Hope to spend the next few days working on the vegetable beds.
26 December 2009 20:42:16
Good by snow.
The weather is getting a little milder.Today the main garden is slowly getting back to its green colour,but not without turning the place quite messy.That wont be for long we hope and garden plans will get back on track again.Earlier on i ventured down to the vegetable garden,but despite not been able to do much work on the beds with the weather i took some notes for the coming year.Looking at the vegetable garden i checked out areas again for the crop rotation.If all plans work out then hopefully some of the seed starting times will be sorted out for inside in the seed room and outside in the cold greenhouse during the coming week.All plans will be for during January with what jobs i will have to do during that month.
26 December 2009 09:46:14
Im still waiting.
Christmas day may be over for us,but we look forward to meeting some more of the family members later today.Yesterday,we had a great day and just after 4 pm i decided to take my usual walk down the garden.I noticed one man that was not called to over Christmas,maybe because he scared the man in red off.Not to worry though because he will scare off some of the bad boys in the garden for me in the new year.Time to look through my books and seeds given to me for Christmas and will add the books to my journal over the next day or two.Happy Boxing day everyone.
25 December 2009 11:56:31
My over all Christmas box.
I could wait no more so i decided to go out to the greenhouse to take up my Christmas potato gifts,stalks the lot.Even though they may be on the small side they are my best ever Christmas present.Now my Christmas day is real happy and the forthcoming gardening year has started for me.I was given some more garden presents for Christmas like books on Allotments and growing vegetable and a voucher for 10 pags of compost which im most happy to receive.Overall though the sight of the Christmas potatoes tops the lot for me.
Hope everyone are having a great time and the man with the red coat has answered their wishes.
24 December 2009 23:35:39
Up this way.
Sometime over the next few hours the man in red will visit us all and when he calls here,will come up the garden i hope.He can call around by the vegetable garden and if he feels hungry he can shine the light and call into the tunnel and take some winter cabbage and maybe some parsley for the stuffing tomorrow.The only snag will be though that he wont forget to leave me some vegetable seed pkts in place and that he closes the tunnel door so no visitors will enter over night.Maybe a big load of the slugs might like to go for a drive with him on the sleigh.It may be cold for the slugs for sure but their will surely be some tough slugs that are hardy.
Once again,have a great xmas everyone.Time to switch off and check on the weatherman.
24 December 2009 20:04:31
Weather watch out.
From just after 11 am i rushed up to collect the final few gifts for under the tree.Still very cold with no rain paying a visit so far today.From around 3 pm i managed to spend an hour in the tunnel to weed out some of the tubs.That was all work that got done in the vegetable garden today.Another of my 7 sisters,hubby and family called to visit and leave off presents.My gift from them was a Science museum weather station for the garden.Santy must have heard my wishes.
24 December 2009 08:07:59
Off to get some final gifts from around 11 am.First off we will have the annual Christmas eve breakfast with app 7-8 members of the family who will call this morning.Then the rush will be on.Santa is warming up and despite the weather set back he will pay a visit to all the gardeners.Have a great festive season to any of my friends i may have not got to send Christmas greetings too.
23 December 2009 18:40:10
Almost a white blanket.
Almost impossible to do any outdoor gardening today so i decided to gather up a few pressies before it will be to late.Most of that end of things should be complete by around lunch time tomorrow.This evening we play for another turkey and santy might give me the lucky cards.Had a quick walk down the garden when i arrived home earlier and not even the slugs will make a snow man now the ground is gone so frozen.Time for an hour to start wrapping up the pressies and then on to the cards.
23 December 2009 08:17:56
Today i will look through collecting up some gifts to drop around to my nieces and nephews for under their Christmas trees.Some have been left here from other members of the family in the last few days and are in the shape of books.Lets hope the man with the red coat has decided to send me some for Christmas.Time will tell.
22 December 2009 23:10:03
Colour will soon return.
The weather will have its good and bad days but eventually the colour will return to the garden.If all goes well then a little pottaging will be done with a small mix of some flowers and vegetables at the main entrance to the garden.In a short while Spring will be in the air.
22 December 2009 18:59:28
My little helper.
With the cold that is in the air the garden is almost a white hard sheet.I had a look this evening at the seed room to see how everything was coming along for light watering.One of my sisters called with Christmas gifts and my niece asked me if she could help me with the flowers.I let the young gardener mist some of the tomatoes and the young gardener was a happy girl.
21 December 2009 20:02:07
Crop Rotation leaflet.
While having a quick look earlier in one of the Woodies stores for some more vegetable seeds in the new year i noticed free leaflets on companion planting and crop rotation.Charts were drawn up on the leaflets and for anyone doing this type of planting they will be a good help for the job.
20 December 2009 21:55:31
Christmas greetings to everyone.
As we approach the end of the year i just put together the outcome with this years home grown vegetables.Over the past year along with poor spells of weather it has been tough for gardeners,especially when the likes of leafspot, blight,slugs etc pay a visit.This year the brassicas done good enough apart from the odd attack.With the roots bed that showed up well over the year.The others [peas and beans etc] supplied the house well.With the fruits in the greenhouse the tomatoes also supplied well and in their own bed the rhubard was good.The herbs i used as protection with the companion planting fought off some of the pests.The nettle bed supplied the compost heaps well and made up good food for the vegetable beds where needed.I used marigolds as much as possible in the vegetable garden as another line of defence,and they helped in places.In the tunnel the vegetables supply was good despite the weather setbacks.So over all i was content with this years outcome from the vegetable garden.Nature won again just as it has over the past years but some day all the gardeners will suprise it.
Finally just to wish everyone a very happy Christmas and have a great new year.Happy gardening in 2010.
20 December 2009 12:42:43
Despite the bad weather we had a visit here from some members of the family a little earlier than usual.I was given a gift from my niece and nephew as a suprise for the garden.When i saw what they were,they put summer weather back into my mind straight away.A mushroom planting kit and a small pocket encyclopedia on gardening.Two young gardeners that were happy when on brief visits during the summer to help me out in the garden if they could brightened the winter weather for me.
20 December 2009 08:29:16
Checking time calls.
The ground is white and has a shine from the frost.The roads are a skating ring.I had a fast walk out to the greenhouse just after 6.30 am to check on the wrapping around the potatoes,so as to make sure no effect will be on them before Christmas day.The greenhouse reads at -2.The weather is looking very poor for today.
19 December 2009 19:36:58
Time to look through sowing charts.
Today started off with a light blanket of snow for a while earlier this morning.The rest of the day was dry with an odd very slight touch of sunshine,but this minute at almost 7.30 pm its raining.Frost is also expected so we know what the morning will be like now.Earlier on today i attacked the second half of the tunnel bed to finish up there and leave the ground levelled and at the ready.The ground has been given a slight touch of manure and all going well will be ready for take off in early spring.Some general purpose fert,will be left at the ready for similar.Now that all that area is complete it will be down to getting some plans together to check on what will be sown there in the new year.Nothing else done in the vegetable garden today and hope to have a look through the other section tomorrow for just an hour or two.
19 December 2009 09:38:37
Snow calls this way.
This morning the snow has payed a visit.Looks well now but when the thawing out starts then the mess will stay.We now have a real sign of Christmas in the air and just under a weeks time the man with the red coat will call [hopefully] with some wrapped up vegetable garden books.Back to fingers crossed time again.I will be heading for the tunnel work in a short while and hope to finish the ground work as planned to prepare for earlie spring sowing in the new year.
18 December 2009 18:39:44
Parsley in tunnel
Parsley [Petroselinum crispum] is usually treated as an annual,the seeds can be slow to germinate,may take up to between 4-6 weeks so it is a good idea to soak the seeds for 24 hours in warm water before sowing them.Sow them in March for summer use and you can sow them again in midsummer for winter use.Plant should be thinned to about 15-20 cm apart once they are large enough to handle.Parsley prefers moderately rich well drained soil,in sun or a little shade.Parsley will grow up to 36-50 cm high.Leaves can be harvested when plants are over 15 cm tall.Another fight again carrot fly is by mixing a little parsley with the carrot seed at sowing.The scent of the parsley is not to well liked by carrot fly.
Plans for tomorrow in the garden will be fixed straight to the tunnel again where the final job in the preparing of the ground will be attacked.The right hand side of the tunnel will be left like a blank canvas and ready for sowing now that the upper section was finally finished earlier in the week.The beds have been lowered and every last inch of the place will be used for growing something or another.Weather will not hold up the job [i hope] with some of the snow expected to pay a visit here over the weekend.The temp, is just gone below -2.The greenhouse was checked to make sure the Christmas potatoes were well wrapped up.
17 December 2009 23:11:37
What is chitting.This is the name given to the method of getting good healthy shoots to emerge from the tubers before they are planted out.The best size of seed potatoes to plant weigh app 2 to 3 ounces which is about the size of a large egg.If they are too larger they can ultimately be cut in halves in such a way that there are ample short shoots in each portion.
In order to induce the tubers to sprout the seed potatoes are stood in trays.I use old egg trays here and they do the job for me.They must be placed in an airy,light,frost proff place until late March.At this time any that have no shoots or are rotting should be thrown to the bin.A well sprouted tuber will have growts about one inch emerging from 3 or 4 eyes at the top.If they are kept in a dark,warm place the shoots will let you down by growing spindly,white in colour and up to 6 inches long.This will be far from ideal for you when chitting new tubers.They need the good start and you will also gain about 3 to 4 weeks on them when sowing with the new shoots on them.If not you would have to wait almost that length of time before they emerge out of the ground.
16 December 2009 19:38:38
Some vegetable enemies.
When sowing onions and other members the gang like shallots,leeks,and chives they are not the best of neighbours with the likes of beans,peas,and even carrots.Lettuces are not to fond of Broccoli.Potatoes despite been of the same night shade family as tomatoes would have war with each other.Tomatoes also hate the brassicas like cabbage kohl rabi etc.Spinach also hate the brassicas.Another enemie of cabbages are the garlics and they also dislike near runner beans.Planting the likes of any of the above vegetables near each other will effect growth and slow things on both of them.
15 December 2009 21:21:38
Single tray seed room lighting.
All plants must have light reaching their leaves for them to produce carbohydrates on which they live.Plants that do not get enough light grow spindly and are very poor looking.Just be careful when selecting and planting companion veg plants that they do not exclude the light from one another.Most veg will need full sun.Some may get away with partial shade,but they must have direct sunlight for part of the day at least.That is the goodness of light with growing vegetable plants.
14 December 2009 19:34:03
Root crop bed.
Another cold day we have had with a fairly sharp frost.As soon as possible this morning i had my usual fast walk though the vegetable section to check in the tunnel that will supply next years root crops.I managed to work there from 2 pm today.The first bed had any light weeds removed and some new clay added to top up the bed.As roots are light feeders and do best on soil that was manured the previous season then no manure was added to that area.General purpose fertilizer will be raked in around 2-3 weeks before planting the crop.Just before 5 pm that section was complete and ready for the 2010 crop when needed.Some more beds there to have similar at a later stage.Notes will be checked upon later for the next move in that area of the garden.
13 December 2009 20:11:38
Beds for successional veg sowings.
When sowing is done the successional way you will avoid large gluts when harvesting them and you will also give yourself a continuity of supplies from certain vegetables.How this sowing is done will be to start off and just sow a few seeds and then about 2 weeks later sow another few and at regular times from there on.This way is suitable for the likes of lettuces,turnips,beetroots,radishes to name a few.Sow the next lot when seedlings from the previous one sown have just appeared .If you sow just a few lettuces every 2 weeks then you will not end up with a load of grown lettuces at the one time.
12 December 2009 21:42:16
Just again to wish everyone that attend the get together tomorrow to have a great time.I can hear the noise from the place almost all ready.Those who attend,im sure will look merry in the santa hats.Jacinta and Fran you both look the picture with the hats already.As Santa would say,[Hoe-hoe hoe-We dig and grow-But not tomorrow-A party we throw.
12 December 2009 21:19:00
It is hard to make out the weather at present.Today had a touch of both spring and summer especially, in the air.It felt great to be back down in the garden.The tunnell gave a reading of up on 13 degrees with the greenhouse around 11.I had to do some watering in the tunnell and it felt just like working during early summer.In bed 1 some weeding was done and with the day been so good i changed plans a little and attacked the compost heaps to give them a shake over.Compost heap 1 was not touched as it is cooking well.Down on some of the vegetable beds they were given some manure to boost them up for spring planting.Time did not work out to cut the grass as planned but maybe for a quick hour in the morning.
In the seed room i noticed the first appearance of my black tomatoes sown on 3/12/09.Sorry about the picture been so dull.Im watching for the orange and yellow coloured type to appear soon.[Thanks Olga]
11 December 2009 17:37:43
Summer time return fast.
When gathering peas here for dinner we always make sure that they are plucked off.The pod is taken in my hand and i break it from the vine with my thumb and first finger.Never will i pull them off with an upward chuck,because the vine will be pulled loose from the support very easy.
Hope all goes to plan in the vegetable garden tomorrow along with cutting the grass.Heading off to an evening dinner at 6.30 with the card group and hope to get back to spend a while in the seed room later.
Enjoy the party everyone from the garden club tomorrow.
10 December 2009 19:27:16
Good weather days.
Started cool but no complaints for the rest of the day.Nice and dry with touches of sunshine.Had a quick early morning walk down the garden for about fifteen minutes to look through some jobs in the vegetable garden for Saturday.Hopefully i will get to clean out some of the tubs in the tunnel and prepare them for the new year sowings.The tubs in the bottom garden will also be given a visit.With weather like today i might even get to give the grass a quick trim before the day is out.
09 December 2009 19:52:57
Winter cabbage for 2010.
Unable to get any outdoor work done in the garden this evening.No complaints about the day for this time of year.Looking back through garden notes taken from earlier in the year,one good rule i learned when growing cabbage,especially at the transplant stage is that they should be planted so firmly that when the edge of one of the leaves is taken hold of by your thumb and finger,the piece of leaf could be pulled off without pulling out the very young plant from the ground.Always be firm with the young cabbage seedlings.Back to the seed room to start some broad beans.
08 December 2009 20:05:45
Has been cold and sometimes on the wet side here today.I took a quick look in the seed room first thing this morning to check on the new sown tomatoes and also the peas sown there on the first of December.Still no show of the tomatoes but in the last few days the tray of peas have come on quite well.Just over a week and 90% of the tray have all come good.Maybe Santa might like to bring some home with him and send back some good weather in return.
07 December 2009 21:16:36
Seed growing tips.
It is important never to sow vegetable seeds to deep because all i do is force the young plants to struggle their way to the surface.What i also do is deplet them of the much needed energy that is needed for them to grow and to help them appear above the surface.A little different with the likes of legumes [peas and beans] seeds.They will be a little deeper.Never place cucumber seeds on the flat side of they will be helped on to rot themselves.Place them in sidedown for a better take off.This evening i done what was planned in the garden shed and washed the fish tubs for greenhouse seed starting.
06 December 2009 20:20:36
Washing time again.
Cold and dry today but just after lunch i managed to spend a few hours doing some garden work.With the help of the basin and a bath i managed to take in some pots to give them some needed cleaning down.After that i dried them all and left them in place out in the garden shed and ready for use when the time comes.I looked back on some of the jobs done earlier in the week and hope to spend tomorrow evening for a while out in the greenhouse to give the fish tanks one last clean down and ready for the off.I have not got a rundown on the weather for the coming week until later.
05 December 2009 21:13:00
Santy digs some veg.
Today i managed to get back on track a little in the veg garden.Compost bin 2 was given a shake up along with some leaves gathered from that area.Markers were put into place for 2010 with crop rotation plans.Up to app 1.30 pm the weather was cool but more important not raining.Though all changed about half an hour later with rain and some wind paying a visit,i was happy with the jobs that were done earlier in the vegetable garden.
When i approached one of the beds i said hello to an old friend,Santa who was digging for some carrots maybe to feed the raindeers.What do you like in the veg garden Santy i asked him.The reply was Hoe,Hoe,Hoe, Merry Gardening and Merry Christmas.
03 December 2009 19:18:45
Did not get into the veg garden early this evening to do some jobs there thanks to the weather,but hopefully tomorrow early afternoon for maybe an hour or two.I had planned to check out seed trays,canes etc for the new year in the tunnell and to have a fast look over beds 2 and 7 for successes and let downs during this year.I got my seed catalogue from Mr Middletons this evening and will get a chance to look through the veg in it later.
From 3 o clock on Friday afternoon i spent an hour in the veg garden.Weeding a little in the tunnell along with washing out the floor.No plans for tomorrow until i see what the weather is like.If the weather suits maybe get to pick up some leaves and give a tidy up around the garden.If not it will be back inside the tunnell to work from there.
02 December 2009 18:06:27
Garden shed clean up this evening,.
Not before time the final clean up was done with the garden shed.The fridge-freezer [second hand] added earlier in the week had all the remaining frozen garden veg moved out to it this evening.The fridge section will be used to store seed for me.All veg,herb,and fruit seed along with the saved seed will be stored in the fridge part.My lawn mower seed will be stored in the freezer part to take off well with the sudden change in temp at sowing time in the new year.The covering around the new house fridge freezer will be a welcome mat on the ground for me over the next while.Later on i will give the book room a much needed tidy up again.Looking like we will be in for another visit from frost later.
01 December 2009 19:58:30
How xmas potatoes look so far.
Looking back over some past notes taken about growing veg,i discovered some of the things that happen with them at feeding.
1 We dont feed plants,they feed themselves.2 What we do need to understand is how they obtain food.3 Plants feed in two ways,through their leaves and their roots.4 The leaves use carbon dioxide from the air to make growth giving out oxygen in its place.5 We know that as photosynthesis.6 This only happens in the light.Without light plants die.7 Plants need minerals and other substances,usually taking them up through their lower roots.8 The plant selects which mineral it wants and only takes the amount it needs,when it needs it.That is some of the ways plants feed themselves when growing.The weather improved a little ealier on to help again frost.How long for,is the question.