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Free Seed planting time

End of summer is nigh but its never too late to sow some crops. All that free seed on the front of gardening Mags I have brought this past year is now going to supply Veg and salad. Rocket can be sowed now it will take around 14 days for the seedlings to appear then you can harvest it as baby leaf without having to thin your sowings or take some baby leaves and leave other plants to mature. Same with Kale One good for baby leaves pickings is Toscana although it can take up to 28 days to produce seedlings but most times much sooner still plenty of time if you cover with fleece to get plenty of baby leaves. Scarlet globe radish will produce a good crop before the end of October if sowed now while soil is still warm. Sow Turnips such as Purple Top Milan you should get some golf ball sized veggies to eat before winter sets in. Always Best when young and sweet. Lettuce sowing too out of the many types I prefer salad bowl for late sowings as they can be sowed and harvested until November outside or longer if you sow in a greenhouse setting. Be quick and a sowing of Mizuna will produce many baby leaves you could keep sowing if the weather is mild for a continued supply. Fleece comes in handy if frost is forecast. Sow cauliflowers now as well for a earlier crop maybe January or slightly later weather dependant maybe late December you never know. Fleece plants if weather overly cold. This week I will also dead head buddleia shrubs and cut the tops off Tomato’s plants and de-leaf them to help what’s left ripen and give then an extra feed. Chillies will need less water but I will water lightly with some added Tomato feed. Weeds appear this time of year as if by magic so I will keep up the weeding as well. Hopefully the guy who keeps a BBQ going everyday it during the summer will get fed up of charcoal flavoured food and give my lungs a break from the fumes. My garden is like an outside room to me and this guy just seems to always be at his BBQ. I like to dry washing as when the day is dry but this summer its been almost impossible with BBQ Bob sending his smoke my way every time the sun has appeared. The plants might like the extra carbon in the air but my lungs definitely do not. Here’s to the Autumn and dare I say Christmas is starting to loom but still plenty of gardening to do until then.

Today rain Yesterday Sun

Most awesome sunset yesterday gave way to rain all day today.
Just basket and pot and greenhouse watering along with a few snail removals and weed pulling.
Noticed a few plants needed supporting with canes but a day with almost no garden action.

Sunshine and showers

Decided to empty greenhouse of left over bedding plants and make use of a bit of border where a new pond will eventually be as and when I get the time and money to complete it.Gardening while it can be mainly free still does require a fair bit of expenditure but if one recycles and keeps a look out for things others don’t want anymore it can be done cheaply. But things like pond liners don’t just come along for free. But the benefit for local insect life and frogs and birds will be well worth it. Got a start on the front garden today and this poses a problem as many people make small talk with you as they pass and I try not to bore them to death with plant facts which in turn makes time an issue as there is never enough time. Still its nice to receive comments like “that looks wonderful” or “My what a beautiful garden” amongst others.
I never really like eye contact and weeding is great for chatting and not having to keep looking at the person your chatting with. I also cleaned the greenhouse floor and shelves today found around 10 snails and many more slugs waiting for a feast under plant trays and shelving. There is a large field behind here so I collect them and despatch them over the fence. They are most likely the same ones I find every few days coming back for more grub. Many gardeners kill them by drowning them in beer traps or using slug pellets I find it better to walk round collect them and despatch them to the field. Its a cloudy evening so it will do no harm to water the hanging baskets now instead of later.

Heatwave and now wind and rain

Seems like a whole season has passed since that week of temps up in the high 30’s. Its been raining on every other day since and some days very humid but some rather chilly for this time of year and the plants are most likely as confused as me when I was once told to be  an individual but try to be like others in the  class. As I am talking about or rather writing about chills it brings to my mind my chillies which despite starting off late are doing really well. I can use some of the green ones now and let the others ripen until they are red I suppose I should also cut a few of the stalks with flowers off now to help the plant save energy for the Peppers that are already in abundance. Its not August yet so will delay this a week until a few more set . You can never have enough chillies. The hanging baskets and pots are in full flower and looking good but not brilliant because of the recent rain but with plenty of dead heading they are looking set to last for another 8 weeks plus. It’s time to sow some more beetroot which will be ready mid autumn and more salad leafs which take a few weeks to mature and lots more radish. Its a must for a continued supply to keep  sowing  every few weeks with  the warm soil  at this time of year  germination takes very little time and the effort will save on buying from shops and always tastes so much better freshly picked. Speaking of picking the strawberries are doing remarkably well still and have been cropping for many weeks now it is also time to start some new plants by pinning the  runners into pots to make more as many strawberry plants start to fizzle out after a few years and its so easy and free to create many more from the runners they send out after cropping .

Damselfly or Dragonfly


It’s either one or the other but this wonderful creature was taking a rest in one of my hanging baskets. It’s normally a bee or two or  hover flies I find hiding out amongst the flowers. The daily ritual of dead heading that will make sure that the plants do not waste energy making seed reveals many different surprise insects. Expert say that dragonflies rest with their wings like this while Damselflies rest with them along side there long bodies.

Wild flower theme doing well .

Was just thinking how colourful the slightly  disordered and muddled even chaotic  wild flower garden theme looks. It’s abundant with insects and seems to have pulled in many butterflies species and bees.  All in all its doing what I hoped it would and it looks far better than I had hoped . I much prefer or thought I did nice bold lines and straight edges but this has proved me wrong .

Hello Everyone .

 Recently I took it upon my self , Ok it was last march you know the one last year not this year that I would grow as much veg along side my plants as I could . The problem was I had a huge lawn well its not that big has I soon found out after getting rid of the thing but it always seemed big while mowing it on hot summer days although in all honesty those were few and far between last year and by the time autumn came which was in fact warmer than summer which was because of the position of the jet stream which is in fact the reason we can grow what we do in the british isles at the latitude where we are as if not for this great jet stream we would get winters like the past two winters (not the current one as this has been really mild) but you will already know this anyway . Back to the garden and veg growing . most of last year was spent getting the veg side of the garden ready for action which involved lots of digging and lots of raised veg bed building . I did manage to get quite a few crops off to a good start and as the autumn was like summer it turned out that the tomatoes and chillies and spuds all cropped well despite being planted at a time in the year when most people would have said the time to plant the likes of them had long past but thanks to that jet stream being out of place my crops were fantastic !! This year though I have already got seedlings started of at least 10 different crops and at least 20 different annual bedding and basket plants of which I will write about in my next installment .Before any are planted out a slight Realignment of the veg beds as i need them straight well the veg crops dont need them straight but I do .The green house I put together last year needs a few nuts and bolts adding as I left a few off in my hurry to build it . Only I could buy a greenhouse then find out that there was reviews saying it took even seasoned gardeners two months to fit together but lucky for me I love reading instructions and once read I dont forget .With the foundation built to mount it on and glazing it took just over one day . I say one day but i mean about 18 hours in all spread out over two days along with a few blisters and cuts .all thats needed now is the hard work of planting and sowing and caring for the crops but for now its rest Time !!