15 May 2012

The Garden Chronicles...Part 3




Wow! It's been two weeks since the last Garden Chronicles update...and lots has happened in the garden since then...


At this time of year the garden really starts to put a growth spurt on...shoots come up all over the place, and previously dormant plants start to wake up as (in theory) the weather starts to warm up...not so much of that going on here right now, but there has been plenty of rain to boost the growth along...


So what have I been up to? Well after a few good sunny days I decided the soil was warm enough to finally plant out a few bits and pieces...starting with the eight mange tout seedlings that have just grown like crazy over the last fortnight...(there are three more small seedlings in the mini greenhouse)...I knew where I was planting them, because I had my "Plan" plus Emily and I had decided the same place as last year would be good, as she can reach to pick and eat them from the path!!! I placed the pots onto the soil first to figure out just where to plant them...
Then following the advice my Mum gave me whilst helping me to plant out seedlings last year...
...I filled the hole with water before...
...popping the seedling in and...
...firming up the soil around it...repeated that until all the mange tout were firmly planted in the ground...then to ensure they had something to climb up, I used another of my Mum's tricks...canes and string wound around, one level at a time until I reached the top of their growth right now...it's a great system, as you just add a level of string each tie the plants grow a bit more...and it worked perfectly last year, so here's hoping it is as successful this year...
...then after much deliberation I decided that three of the five courgette plants could also be put in the ground...and then covered with my cute little dome cloches...so...
...as with the mange tout, I filled the holes with water first and then popped the plants in ...and firmed up the soil...
...another of my Mum's tips for courgette planting, is to make a ditch all the way around the plant...that way you can water the ditch rather than the leaves...and that way the plant gets plenty to drink...neat heh?
I made sure all of the newly planted veggies also had a good "watering-in"...
...before covering the courgettes...and as a back-up plan, I have two smaller courgettes that are hardy-ing up in the greenhouse if these three don't make it with the bizarre weather we are currently having... 
...another lot of seedlings that got planted out were the 'snail-eaten' runner beans...out of the eight that were doing really well, only five have survived the snail attack!! So out they went...around the base of obelisk that I use for my Bean Tower...I have since planted a few more beans, so when they grow, and are planted out it will give a staggered crop...which will elongate my bean harvest...
...as you can see, the Spring Onions, Rocket, Globe Radish, French Breakfast Radish and Little Gems are all doing well...in fact the radishes have had a bit of thinning out since the picture was taken...
...however the poor Rainbow Chard (top three photos) and the Beetroot (bottom two photos) are not doing so well...this time last year they were growing great guns...look...
This was May 24th 2011...just over a year ago...what a difference! I had already harvested and eaten radishes and baby Little Gem leaves...and look at the beans...I think we may need to start adjusting our growing seasons...
...I also noticed that a few red onions are sprouting...and have sow some more seeds just in front of them...
...and the garlic are growing well...
...I had some more tiny seedlings that needed potting on...so that's what I did one sunny morning last week...
...we have two more Courgettes, three more Lupins, five more Tomato plants and another Butternut Squash...all of which have been popped into the mini greenhouse to bring them on a bit more...
...they have some company in there, two Cucumbers, a couple more Tomatoes and some Sweet Peas (from the British Bloggers in support of British Flowers Campaign)
...the last bit of garden news is the start of my new Herb Garden...I have decided to dig over a patch near to the back door, it will be in easy reach of the kitchen that way...
...it's not a huge patch, but you have to start somewhere, and here is good for me...
...mind you no sooner had I dug it over and added some compost, than I decided to move one of my two Rhubarb plants...I bought two crowns last  year, one did great the other not so...and as they have grown up again this year, the smaller one is very weak and weedy!! So I have decided to move it and give it a final warning!! Grow in the next month or so or get replaced!!!
...look how teeny tiny it is compared to the other one!!
...much more healthy...
Finally a quick look at Alex's Chilli pots and Em's Aubergines...all doing well on the conservatory windowsill...

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