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Spring has sprung

…with a spring in my step, I sprung into action today for about 30 minutes and turned my attention to the trays of Purple Velvet Petunia seedlings on the windowsill. They need pricking out today! petunia petunia

 

Having done naff all for the past 10 days due to my furry companion of 19 years passing away last Monday, my beloved cat Yasmin…..I’ve not been in the best of moods since. Missing the everyday interaction, feeding and even the sound of her claws on the laminate flooring has she walked through the house. I’m going to miss her forever !

As you can see from the above pics, I managed a few trays. If I’m having another spring moment tomorrow, the Bacopa will be next.

 

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❤❤❤

woohooo…has summer finally arrived.

And I’m feeling allllrightttt…

…the sun is out and the temperature is raising…..and I’m standing outside of the greenhouse.  How great is that.😀  So, what’s been happening at the photographer’s garden, well…

DSC_1540The tomatoes have finally moved to their final positions in the greenhouse.

DSC_1541This is the happiest of all the trays of beetroot. The rest are in a mood because I’ve pricked them out to late – beetroot hate having their roots disturbed.

DSC_1542The parsnips are doing fab – trying to keep the temps down as growth will stop – veg seedlings don’t like extreme temps.

DSC_1543Looks like I’m going to have a glut of Lettuce – I do the same thing every year. However, I’ve a great little soup recipe – Green Herb Soup. My boss would make this for the guests, when I use to lived at the Lakes, it’s fab !

I’ll post the recipe later though.🙂

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LOL my only Cauliflower seedling to germinate, well I did chance an old packet of seeds, Clapton this variety. Notoriously difficult to grow, this variety is surprisingly easy. Erm yeh, think I’ll buy a fresh packet next year.

DSC_1545Basil.  It’ll be growing alongside the tomatoes in the greenhouse, as it doesn’t grow very well outside…just goes all black and withers – just too cold.

DSC_1546Mini-pop (baby corn) on the left and Sweetcorn on the right. Both planted differently – Mini-pop in single rows 20ins apart. Sweetcorn in blocks of four 16ins each way. Never had a bad crop yet !

DSC_1548Squash, planting these alongside my pumpkins for Halloween.

DSC_1550Giant Sunflowers, well, not at the moment. Soon, I hope…

DSC_1552Busy Lizzies, sowed them quite late really but it doesn’t matter. Should be ready for the hanging baskets by the end of June if I prick them out now.

DSC_1553I don’t tend to grow broccoli but thought, what the hell give it another go.

DSC_1554Ha, my cucumber plant, La Diva. These are murder for getting powdery mildew but if you catch it early…spray the leaves with diluted milk and water and this does help to reduce the damage. lol Anno milk and water, seriously this does work. One solution is to UP the humidity – the blue tray will be filled with water  to keep the immediate area around the plants, as humid as possible. Lets see what happens !!

DSC_1555I’ll have a P please bob….yes, you can’t have an allotment without a wigwam of peas. The trouble is, the pea moth loves them too. Fleece may be the answer.

DSC_1556I can’t wait for these to ripen. Bought these strawberry plants from a nursery down south – on the left a variety called Vibrant and on the right Marshmello. One thing is for sure, I’ve never seen plants so big, the flowers are massive.🙂🙂

DSC_1557Potatoes !! Main crop – Rooster, nice spuds and versatile.

DSC_1558More potatoes !! haha. First earlies – Anya, love these…nice nutty flavor great with salads.

DSC_1559Peppers, going to pot these on tomorrow. They’re not happy because their roots are too hot.

DSC_1560A mates baskets – filled with bacopa, million bells and surfina. Think I only planted them up 2 weeks ago, already they’ve doubled in size.🙂    Fantastic !!

So that just leaves the rest of the weeding to finish off….oh man. hehe

Hello…

…is it me your looking for.

Ooops !!

I haven’t forgotten…..really. Time these Jack O’ lantern pumpkins were potted on, being very greedy and hungry plants they’d soon suffer if I didn’t.

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Using a fork gently lift from the tray.

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And pot on into individual modules; where they’ll remain for 2 weeks before being repotted again.

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Cheers.

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…it’s a beautiful day

coastflower

Hot Pepper

Since the weather was very poor and not much can be done outside. I figured it was time to sow my peppers before it’s too late. The seeds were covered with a 1/4″ of compost and put into a carrier bag to conserve moisture and placed in a warm place. Seedlings should appear in 7-14 days. Hmmm, we’ll see.

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Growing lobelia – a method I like to use

Since I can’t get out and about. I thought I’d share my way of dealing with lobelia seeds. I often read the problems associated with lobelia, yet I find it one of the easiest to grow. Having said that, many of my methods were learnt through trial and error. 

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1. Surface sow the seed onto moist compost in 4 or 5 rows and mist to adhere to seed to the compost. Here I’ve used the half size seed trays but you can use any size you wish.  Put into a carrier bag and using the handles, loosely tie so as not to let any moisture escape. Put into a warm light room/greenhouse and check at least once a day. Water using a fine spray bottle. Once germination has started remove from bag and position in a bright place, away from direct sunlight – direct sun will burn young seedlings.

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2. The seedlings should look something like this after a few weeks.

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3. When the seedlings reach this size they’re ready to be split and put into individual pots/modules.

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4. Using a ruler for example, run it along the edge and underneath – very similar to loosening a cake from its tin.

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5. Using the ruler, use it to cut each row.


6. It should look like this once it is separated.


 7. I find the ruler comes in handy when lifting from the tray.

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8. Gently split into little clumps – they are very robust, so do not worry.

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9. And pot on, into cells.

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10. Then finally water from below – here a poundshop cat litter tray does the bizz………and transfer to a warm greenhouse for them to grow on.

After a few weeks the roots should have took and the plant will have grown in size. This is the time to transfer the trays to a non heated place until its time for hardening off, which usually lasts for 2 weeks. Once the risk of frosts and nasty weather has passed they’ll be ready for planting in your favorite places. And don’t forget, for great displays feed regularly – just like us, they need food to maintain their looks throughout the season.

So, if you fancy giving Lobelia a go – this is a great method and one which works for me. Happy gardening.🙂

Waiting for the sun…

Usually, the Easter weekend signals all things potatoes and garden centres. However, this year is different – it is snowing but only just…here in the Northeast, thank goodness. The same can’t be said for other parts of the country who have been shivering under a white blanket of the stuff all week. Thinking back to this time last year, we were in the grips of a mini heatwave with many of us basking under its rays down the local parks with the kids. Lovely it was !!

Sadly it proved to be the only bit heat to hit our shores in 2012 and the rest of the Spring and Summer was spent under a umbrella sporting an essential bit of kit; wellies.

I’m hoping this year will be different and this extended cold weather, which has been predicted to last for many more weeks yet, turns out to be a good omen for the coming summer. Long and hot. Oooh, what a thought !!

The potatoes I’ve chosen to grow this year are Rooster ( main crop). A versatile all-rounder which grow and cooks well, whether its mashed, boiled, steamed or baked.

So in the meantime, I’ll continue to nurse my cold with a beechams lemon and plot the season to come. Then hopefully in a few days I’ll be feeling well enough for a trip to my local garden centre to check the range of plants they have in stock.

I can’t wait.

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Enjoy your Easter Weekend, whatever the weather.

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