Archive for ‘Gardening: Photos’

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Walking barefoot in the grass…

I’ve been digging in the garden today, planting some cabbages (protected from the wind with little plastic collars, and from the slugs with organic pellets!). Then I sat still for a moment and realised it was the perfect day. 18*c, sunny, with a slight breeze. Just right. So I sat a while, walked in the grass barefoot (one of life’s simple pleasures), and took some photos.

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Come onnnnnnn Spring!

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Spuds!!

Excitement! My very first crop of homegrown potatoes!

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These ones were grown from potatoes left over from a bag bought in a shop – I also used ‘proper’ seed potatoes but this just happened to be the lot that I tipped out today. Grown in a flower bucket – the ones that are used in florists and some shops sell off very cheaply (in my case about 20 for 99p!), and this is the haul from one bucket.

I’ve also been harvesting courgettes (LOTS of courgettes!), radish, rocket, lettuce, a few peas, and lots of fresh herbs. No beans, as I planted them terribly late (I have hope yet), and the tomatoes are growing rather slowly for my taste – they are just starting to grow fruits now. I also have garlic and a few pepper (capsicum) plants in the plastic greenhouse which have begun to fruit, but whether or not they’ll ripen to red is luck!

This year I’m also hoping to grow a few basic veggies into the winter – I have leeks on the go and I’m about to plant (late) some chard and kale. I’ll also put in some spinach in September.

Monday, April 13, 2009

Tomatoes, Peas and Potatoes!

dscf1055 A shot of (most of) my tomato plants, taken a few days ago. As you can see they’re still small as I started late this year, though they’ve all got their  second leaves since this was taken. Anyway, I’m confident they’ll catch up!

In terms of varieties this year I’ve planted Ildi (a fabulous yellow cherry tomato that did fantastically last year), Golden Sunrise (another yellow one, standard size this time, that also did well), Gardener’s Delight (very easy to grow, tasty red cherry tomatoes), Roma (a larger red one, for cooking) and Red Alert (another cherry tomato that’s meant to ripen early). As always, I’ve planted too many, so I’ll have spares to give away, some for Chris’ mum and some for Freecyclers.

And today I planted peas (a mixture of Alderman and Onward). The cane ‘fence’ for them to grow up was born of laziness – I detest pea netting and I don’t particularly like spending hours with string making elaborate constructions from canes. I simply stuck the canes in at an angle, and then ‘wove’ in more canes to make a surprisingly stable construction – no string required! I’m hoping the mixture of Alderman (a climber) and Onward (a more normal short plant) will a) guard against one type just not growing, like I had last year! and b) make the crop last a bit longer. We’ll see!

The buckets in front are for potatoes  – the buckets themselves are Morrisons flower buckets, I managed to get 25 for £1! With some holes drilled in dscf1056the bottom they make fab planters. Each one currently holds a few inches of compost and one seed potato, more compost will be added as they grow. This is a bit of an experiment for me but I’m assured spuds do great in containers! I’ve got Nicola (a maincrop ‘new’ potato) in there, plus a couple of experimental ones saved from the supermarket (which you’re not supposed to do, but I like to rebel!). I also have some Pink Fir Apple chitting to go in in a couple of weeks. Hopefully between them some will do well!

I’m off to Brighton for a few days tomorrow so hopefully everything will do okay in my absence :)

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Easter Break in the Garden

Well, so far my crossed fingers have worked and the weather has held up okay for me to work in the garden this week (I have two weeks off work). Mostly it’s just tidying up, washing pots, freshening up existing plants etc. For the rest of the week I’m aiming to get the patio tidy and all those random stacks of plant pots moved out of the way, peas planted, and the greenhouse up. We’ll see!

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Overall view of the patio – as you can see, a fair bit of tidying up to do! The green plastic over the table is my greenhouse cover, which I’m hoping to put together this week.

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A collection of pots on the patio: herbs (oregano and rosemary) – I’ve cleared this out ready to plant more so it looks a little bare at the moment; garlic (shop bought and saved from last year’s crop – to compare the two); and my little blueberry bush – it looks a bit forlorn to me, but it was pretty much just thrown in a pot, at least it’s still alive!

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My strawberry planters – before and after tidying up! I found a MASS of slug eggs and some other icky looking bugs in the pots last week so decided to uproot the lot, tidy them all up and repot in fresh compost. They look a lot better now, if a little thin on the ground, but they’ll fill the space quickly.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Harvest

Veggies harvested from the garden, 28/07/08.

Despite my neglect, I managed to collect this little lot yesterday – green and yellow courgettes, fine beans, red and white onions, garlic, mini red peppers, cucumbers, baby carrots, large chillies for stuffing, and small aubergines. Everything has been grown in containers on the patio, which I think proves that with some proper care you could get some great results from container gardening.

The aubergines (‘Calliope’) have to be the most impressive – growing in this summer’s terrible cold, wet weather, sometimes indoors, but always in far-too-small pots. I’m going to try and pot them up this week, but no promises!

(unfortunatly, the cukes turned out to be bitter – I’ve now been educated about taking off the male flowers!)

And, from last month, the first jalapeno harvest – pickled with onions, carrots, spices and vinegar for some hopefully delicious ‘nacho rings’. I’ve never bottled anything before so hopefully I’ve done it right!

Monday, May 5, 2008

I was going to write a proper post today, but frankly I can’t be bothered. The sun has been shining and I’ve been in the garden most of the day pottering about, and washing the car.

Carrots planted (pot/bed)
Onions planted (pot/temporary trays)
3rd lot of successional peas showing
Salad leaves, spinach, radish etc showing
Tomatoes, aubergines and peppers going mad indoors.
Strawberries planted up in troughs.

It feels like summer might be finally arriving?

Monday, March 24, 2008

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Looking at the right hand side of the plot – I dug my first bed today, which will be the second bed in the row and will hold early potatoes. The right hasn’t been covered so it’s technically the side that needs a lot more digging, so I’m starting with the potato beds (spuds don’t mind weeds!). I’m splitting each side of the plot into 5 beds, with a path between – hopefully this will mean I can avoid compacting the soil (not that thats a major problem, its very sandy) and will make rotation easier.

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And the left hand side. This was covered when I got to it, so has very little weeds – I’m hoping the end closest to me in the picture will be for beans/peas, and will be the next bit to be dug, so I’ll add in plenty of compost and shredded paper to try and combat the problem of sandy soil – doesn’t hold water or nutrients.

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A couple more pics for my records – a view of the whole plot with my pileo’ compost, and the ground that’s not been used – seems a bit of a waste? I’ve had vague thoughts of putting in a flower/herb bed, leaving wide paths around it. I think I’ll also add in another bed on the right hand side – at the moment it’s just got a small square bed which I think was used for salad crops.

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And here’s a basic plan of the lottie, with the beds-to-bed marked out. I’m working on what goes where!

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And finally, something non lottie related – yesterday afternoon I managed to put my mobile phone through a washing machine cycle. No surprise that it’s completely and utterly dead, which is a bit of a bugger as it was an expensive phone (Sony K8001). Thankfully, the contract period to ‘buy’ the phone is up, and I can thus cancel the contract straight away. I was planning on switching to pay as you go anyway, I guess I’ll just have to buy another phone (a much much cheaper one!). I’m mostly upset about it as I don’t have a backup of my phone numbers – and I need to look into if I can transfer my old number as that’s the one everyone (absolutely everyone, inc businesses etc – we have a landline but my mobile is the number I give out) has.

… really, really stupid thing to do.

Saturday, March 15, 2008

I have an allotment!

Well, it seems like living in Scunthorpe has at least one advantage … a mere week after ringing up enquiring about an allotment a contract, map and rulebook turned up on my doorstep! Today I finally managed to get in there (until I’ve signed the contract and paid for a key I can’t get in unless someone is inside within earshot), and was pleasantly surprised. I’d prepared myself for the usual new-lottie horror stories- 6ft wall-to-wall (fence to fence?) weeds. Instead I got this:

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Oh my god, how good is that??

It’s a fairly small plot – it goes back to where you can see a wooden trellis/plant support – but I think its more than enough for my needs, enthusiasm, and fitness level!

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On the left hand side of the plot is my new shed – as yet unexplored as the previous owner left it padlocked – so first job is to get that open.

(It has this type of hasp, if anyone has any hints beyond unscrewing the lot and replacing it.)

The shed is set up with two water butts – which need replacing – but the guttering is sound. The site does have water tap(s) but I’m not sure where, and rainwater is certainly better! :)

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On the right hand side of the plot is the compost bins – a two bay, wooden construction. It needs a little repair at the back but there’s plenty of bits of wood lying around that will serve the purpose, so it’s a small job. I might see if I can take the front wooden slats off, and stick in a couple of posts so I can have them sliding in from the top – removable for easy access. That’s a less important job though.

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Next to the shed is a small strawberry patch – a bit weedy but nothing to worry about. Hopefully the plants aren’t too old and are still productive.

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About half of the plot has been covered in plastic over winter – it seems like the previous occupant planted up over last summer as theres broccoli (edible) and onions (inedible) in the ground. The worst of the weeds in the beds is shown below, there’s something big and bushy at the back of the plot, and theres that open bit at the front of the plot between the shed and the compost bin which seems awfully wasteful – so there’s some digging to be done, but very little compared to some plots I’ve seen!

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Full of Promise…
Sunday, March 2, 2008

Seedlings!

dscf0221.jpg My early-sown ‘fruiting’ veg (as I think of veg such as tomatoes, aubergines, peppers etc) – L-R ‘Sweet Mini Red’ Pepper, ‘Mini Bambino’ Aubergine, ‘Meek and Mild’ chilli pepper and ‘Bolivian Rainbow’ chilli pepper. I also have 6 slightly larger Jalapeno seedlings on a brighter south-facing windowsill, where these will be going shortly (at the moment they’re on a warmer, but north facing windowsill with radiator). As they grow and it gets warmer I’ll transfer them to larger pots on the kitchen windowsill and in the living room – both south facing – with reflectors behind if needed for extra light. At the moment it’s a little too cold for them downstairs as wherever possible we save gas and just heat the rooms we spend a lot of time in.

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The other end of the propagator holds herbs – thai, opal and sweet genovese basil, mint, oregano and rosemary.

And this is what I spent half an hour working on yesterday – a recycled polystyrene ‘germination box’. It holds two half size seed trays, and if it works as I’m hoping it’ll keep the seedlings nice and warm, sat by the radiator. I’m not lucky enough to have an airing cupboard or a heated propagator so this is the next best thing – and if it doesn’t work, well, I’ve not lost much :)

It currently holds a tray of more peppers, chillis, aubergines and ‘Sub Arctic Plenty’ tomatoes for a hopefully early crop, and the tray on top holds some mixed cut and come again type lettuce, which hopefully should produce a few baby leaves on the windowsill for me to pep my sandwiches up with before the outside lettuce comes through.

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