Saturday, 27 February 2010

Oh Yes.

It's been way to wet over the past week to go to the lottie, but dry enough today to have a close look at the back garden and admire this little beauty (Iris Reticulata) which opened up this morning. Spring is definitely here.

I bought 4 strawberry plants last October, each with numerous runners. I got these home & potted them up, all except one have rooted & taken, and have been out in the back garden all winter & survived all the snow & ice that winter has thrown at them this year. I'll take these up to the allotment & plant out in March.

This very early variety of Purple Sprouting Broccoli (called "Summer Purple") sown in January is still doing fine in the garden - now temperatures are above freezing, they're growing again & putting out true leaves. Will sow some more this weekend, but will try planting these ones out in late March. Should be ready to harvest from June onwards.

Thursday, 25 February 2010

Wet Wet Wet

It hasn't stopped raining all week, so no chance of being able to get on with much at the plot this weekend. Although temperatures are nicely on the rise, think I'll resist the temptation to start sowing the seeds I'm planning to sow in March and give it another week or two.

May as well do something creative instead. I've always loved horticultural plant illustrations. Might do some painting & drawing & start recording my own efforts.

Sunday, 14 February 2010

Keep on Digging

And the digging goes on, whenever the weather holds off and earth is dry enough to allow us to continue. Luckily, unless saturated, 2 or 3 dry days is enough.

We're about three quarters done - just the final quarter to go. It's where I'm planning to put my potatoes, so reckon we've got another 4 weeks to get through it.

It's March in 2 weeks time - it'll be time to start sowing in earnest. I look at the sowing calender I've made, and although every window sill is already covered with seedlings or chitting tatties, I've got the motherload of stuff waiting to get started next month. Here's hoping for a mild spell of weather so once seedlings show, I can harden things off and get stuff shifted outside to the 4-tier greenhouse relatively quickly.

Sunday, 7 February 2010

Rhubarb bed

Rhubarb now has it's own bed, in the shady spot behind the shed. Hopefully will do ok there - seems that not even the weeds flourish in that spot, as despite showing all the signs of several years neglect, it didn't take long to dig over. We treated the crowns appallingly - dug them up, chopped them into bits, and left them out to be battered by wind rain and frost, and buried under snow and ice throughout late Dec & early Jan. And still the pieces were getting busy budding & sprouting in a very hooliganish Ramsay-esque fashion. So instead of 2 huge crowns, we now have about a dozen plants (crownlets?). Four we gave away to a friend, six are in so far, still got a bit more digging to do before the final couple go in.

It's been the first weekend in several months that weather has been dry enough to allow us to spend both the Sat & Sun on the plot. I ache all over, and it feels wonderful.

Wednesday, 3 February 2010

Chilli & Chitting

Sowed a number of chilli seeds mid-Jan in a heated propogater - these are popping up nicely. Have a mixture of indoor and outdoor plants. May try one or two up at the allotment, though think conditions may be too exposed up there. Will mainly have them in my back garden. I've never been a huge fan of eating chilli till a holiday to Mexico last year - suddenly I got chilli.

I return from work anxiously each evening expecting to find a parcel of seed potatoes ordered back in November, but still no sign. But found & purchased 3 varieties in a local pound shop yesterday. Ok, these are not exactly the varieties that I'd spent careful hours selecting & choosing on the basis of reported disease resistance, taste and productivity, but at least I now have something chitting on my windowsills.