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» What are you harvesting today?
by freebird 22nd July 2021, 11:26 pm

» What's left of the July garden
by FloBear 20th July 2021, 2:12 pm

» Welcome guest
by Ploshkin 2nd July 2021, 7:14 am

» Artichokes
by Chilli-head 24th June 2021, 2:53 pm

» New Kiva loan
by Dandelion 11th June 2021, 5:18 pm

» Heat in the June garden at last !
by Ploshkin 5th June 2021, 7:22 pm

» whats on the menu
by freebird 3rd June 2021, 8:34 pm

» Fresh shoots in May
by Ploshkin 31st May 2021, 9:17 pm

» What arts and craft things have you been making lately?
by FloBear 23rd May 2021, 7:41 pm

» Peak planting in the April garden
by Chilli-head 4th May 2021, 8:26 am

» The gardener's yearbook
by Chilli-head 6th April 2021, 11:10 am

» Springing into action in the March garden
by Chilli-head 27th March 2021, 6:31 pm

» What have I done in the workshop today?
by FloBear 11th March 2021, 7:17 pm

» A late start to the February garden
by Florence 1st March 2021, 12:43 pm

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by Dandelion 27th February 2021, 9:38 pm

» When we come out of the other side of this ...
by Florence 24th February 2021, 10:14 am

» My anti virus doesn't like this forum
by Florence 22nd February 2021, 2:29 pm

» The January quagmire
by freebird 27th January 2021, 2:47 pm

» The Christmas workshop
by Chilli-head 29th December 2020, 12:03 pm

» Anyone still gardening in December ?
by Dandelion 3rd December 2020, 9:53 pm

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The January quagmire

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default The January quagmire

Post by Chilli-head 1st January 2021, 2:39 pm

Anyone braving it ?

Not me.  I can use the binoculars to look at the veg plot and greenhouse from the kitchen window !

What I do see is globe artichokes looking really happy.  These were the remains of one plant which sulked in an ornamental bed for years, so I moved it to the veg plot, dividing it into two.  They seem to have rather taken possession of the site.  They used to die back in winter - I guess most silvery foliage plants are as a rule not that hardy. But thetmy are still growing it seems. I'm hoping to finally have to work out how to cook one !
Got a very pretty Marshalls seed catalogue in the post. I'll have a browse later.


Last edited by Chilli-head on 25th February 2021, 8:38 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Post by Dandelion 3rd January 2021, 9:46 pm

Haha - quagmire! That made me laugh because it's so accurate!

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The richer we have become materially, the poorer we have become morally and spiritually. We have learned to fly in the air like birds and swim in the sea like fish, but we have not learned the simple art of living together as brothers and sisters.

-Martin Luther King, Jr.
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Post by FloBear 4th January 2021, 6:50 pm

Not too swampy now, the chickens have remembered that they aren't honorary ducks. The soil is somewhat sandy and drains pretty well.

Not doing anything in the garden - apart from tidying sheds and throwing out 'stuff'. For explanation, see tea-room post.
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Post by Chilli-head 5th January 2021, 10:43 pm

It has just occurred to me that we will probably be facing another compost crisis this year again. And I used so much last year my reserves of garden compost are low. And it looks like it will be harder - between my ankle and people using old artificial trees instead of shipping for real ones - to collect Christmas trees from around to shred and compost. Hmm. Might have to consider getting some delivered.
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Post by freebird 7th January 2021, 2:46 pm

Yes, I thought that too CH. Fortunately I have all my new seed, so that won't be a problem. I'm hoping to have enough homemade to fill all my greenhouse pots - what I used last year, a 50/50 mix of garden 'soil' and growbag compost, was dreadful. Despite twice weekly feeding, the plants struggled. I think it was a combination of poor light in the old greenhouse, the 50% garden soil, totally devoid of nutrients and acidity of about 5.5, and the growbag compost which saturated but didn't drain (awful stuff - will never buy those again).

Looking forward to growing in the new greenhouse, with decent compost and good ventilation. Still got power and water to run to it - pipework is there but needs finishing at each end and connecting up.
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Post by Chilli-head 7th January 2021, 3:47 pm

My tomato mix made the tomato plants really grow - far too much. I think I overdid the hoof and horn in combination with good garden compost, and ended up with more vegetation than fruits. Good year for peppers though, the sweet ones that is.
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Post by Dandelion 7th January 2021, 10:32 pm

I hadn't thought about compost Mad . I've been waiting since last summer to get some ericaceous compost for the new little blueberry I bought as soon as garden centres opened after the first lockdown. First there was a problem with enough bags to put the compost in, then the garden centre sold out.

................................................................................................................................
The richer we have become materially, the poorer we have become morally and spiritually. We have learned to fly in the air like birds and swim in the sea like fish, but we have not learned the simple art of living together as brothers and sisters.

-Martin Luther King, Jr.
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default Re: The January quagmire

Post by Chilli-head 17th January 2021, 4:38 pm

Today, I got out my Christmas present from Mrs C-H - a new Vitapod heated propagator. My old ones - one at least 30 years old and one probably 15 or so were falling apart as the plastic has gone brittle in the sun. The first step is building it - it is rather like getting something from Ikea ! Still, goes together nicely, and looks a lot clearer than the old murky plastic lids.

So - on to first sowings of the year ! Onions and Shallots. Last year overwintered onions did well, but the spring sowings did not. Digging out John Seymour's self sufficient gardener, he comments that spring sown onions will only do well in wet areas; in dry places they will not grow well or store long. This is exactly what I had found; here out East the wet of winter dries out into a parched summer at some point, and anything you can do to get things started while there is still some moisture is a help. So, winter sown onions. Let's see how it goes.

And since the propagator is on .. may as well put in some trays of baby leaves. Amaranth, mustard, beetroot and Greek cress. Little to be lost by trying - the seed was left over, or free with Kitchen Garden magazine.
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Post by freebird 18th January 2021, 5:36 pm

Ooh, starting already CH. Too early here, but I have spent the afternoon finishing putting down the paving slabs in the new greenhouse. The man is seeing to electric and water supply, and then hopefully finishing off my Christmas present - a sand tray with heat cable. I have a propagator that I use indoors, but want a larger area so that I can move things out to the greenhouse more quickly but still give them some gentle bottom heat to tide them over cold nights.
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Post by Chilli-head 18th January 2021, 10:14 pm

My heated sand tray currently is keeping the lemons cozy. We had lemon drizzle cake at the weekend with home grown lemons ! The lime died back to the graft point, but the rootstock survived and is now producing juicy and slightly orangey lemons ?
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Post by Dandelion 21st January 2021, 12:16 pm

Cooking with your own home-grown lemons is a real success!

................................................................................................................................
The richer we have become materially, the poorer we have become morally and spiritually. We have learned to fly in the air like birds and swim in the sea like fish, but we have not learned the simple art of living together as brothers and sisters.

-Martin Luther King, Jr.
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Post by Dandelion 21st January 2021, 12:23 pm

I must admit I just can't get started on growing anything here - the weather has been so mixed and unpredictable. So I'm clearing the decks - the last kohl rabi was dug up, split and given to the hens to amuse them, I've emptied a compost bin this morning and Mr D helped me to remove a large branch from the apple tree, which is growing very close to a fence, and needed some more air circulation around it. For once I think I will be very laid back about growing seeds. (The other issue is that I bought a table to put in the window of the spare room for my propagator, but our youngest has been with us since the November lockdown - one lockdown morphed into Christmas, then lockdown number three, so she is still living with us and sleeping in the spare room. My propagator would be competing for space with hair accessories and a laptop, so I'm waiting for space to grow!)

................................................................................................................................
The richer we have become materially, the poorer we have become morally and spiritually. We have learned to fly in the air like birds and swim in the sea like fish, but we have not learned the simple art of living together as brothers and sisters.

-Martin Luther King, Jr.
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Post by Chilli-head 21st January 2021, 4:50 pm

I had a look in the new propagator today, and I have Greek cress, mustard greens, beetroot (for salad leaves) and the first few shallots emerged Very Happy It has begun !
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Post by freebird 27th January 2021, 2:47 pm

Not started any seeds yet, but soon. I have dwarf broad bean seed that can be grown in a container, so am going to try for an early crop in the new greenhouse.

Now the freezing weather has let up (probably temporarily), I need to grab the opportunity to plant my apple tree and move a rose bush, before they break dormancy. Just ran out of time in November, and the weather hasn't been suitable since.
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