In our corner of Dorset we have a travelling fishmonger who calls on a Tuesday. He is an interesting guy and sometimes buying the fish can take too long as we attempt to resolve the ills of the world! Growing vegetables is one of his many talents and I share two tips with you.
Try growing Flower Sprouts – available from Dobies and Marshalls and others. These plants are a cross between kale and sprouts and produce a loose sprout, like a mini cabbage. They crop through the winter providing a ready source of home-grown greens. I am prepared to renew hostilities with the cabbage white butterfly to try this plant!
Fill a box with old, spent compost. If you are a fishmonger, then a fish box would do the trick! Put a fresh layer of new compost on the top and sow carrot seeds. Keep watered and reap lots of carrots. This is worth a try – I struggle to get carrots to germinate consistently when planted in the ground.
Here are a few more blossom photos – its fruit tree season now so I am hoping for more sunshine to encourage the bees and pollinate the trees..
Here is a 360 view of the garden – switch on the sound for the birdsong!
360 tour of our garden in early May
Well it’s not been especially warm but the sun has been shining! I am pleased to report that parsnips, swiss chard and carrots are germinating (no photos – way too small!). Finally, I have learned to delay planting into April and to keep the seeds in the box all the way through March! The first early potatoes that we planted outside are just showing above the surface so we will need to be on frost alert. I wonder how they’ll do compared to the same variety that we planted in the tunnel?
Today has been a day for weeding, tidying and planning for the arrival of a mini digger on Wednesday. Paul has been tackling one or two of the ‘wilder areas’ of the garden and now needs mechanical assistance.
Today is cloudy and the temperature is around 10 Celsius.
I like to do a tour around the garden every morning after taking our two collies out for their walk. It was misty and sunny today so I took a few photos of some of the plants in flower.
We have been busy planting in the vegetable plot – sugar snap peas, carrots, parsnip, chard, the rest of the potatoes and lettuce plants from the greenhouse. Lets hope that the cooler weather forecast for the weekend does not materialise!
Things are growing well in the tunnel – its exciting trying things out and waiting to see how it goes. I have planted cucumbers for the greenhouse and a few courgettes, thinking that the courgettes can go out in May if its warm and in the tunnel if it stays cold. I am holding back on planting climbing beans and pumpkins until early May. These plants hate to wait in the greenhouse once they are ready to go outside.
Its a day of April showers in Dorset today. We have been out in the garden tidying the flower garden and doing some ground preparation in the vegetable plot. One minute the sky is clear blue then the next big raindrops are hurling from the sky. Classic April showers have been a rare occurence in recent years so we are enjoying them today. You can always shelter and brew a cup of tea when the rain is falling!
More plantings have been made in the vegetable garden today – some early potatoes went in a few days ago. Paul has planted shallots (way too late!) and I have done a row of carrots. The showery weather is good for raking down the soil that was rotivated last week.
In the polytunnel we have potatoes coming up and carrots and coriander germinating – this would not have been possible in the open ground. Also growing are lettuce and french bean plants that I started in the greenhouse.
The weather remains cold with an easterly wind. We have been out in the garden to tidy up and the only action in the vegetable garden is in the greenhouse.
Here is a link to a video of the garden – complete with Easter Sunday bells!
Todays temperature 5 degrees C, brisk eastlery, cloudy and dry
Tomatoe seed planted Monday 18th February – Stupice, Sungold, Caspian Pink. Black Krim and Aunt Ruby’s German Green. There are planted in modules and sitting on the heated mat in the greenhouse.
Early potatoes (Orla) planted in the poly tunnel yesterday. We will plant more outside later when its warmer.
Today its about 10C and sunny.
Today its about 7C and raining. Yesterday the sun shone and it was a lovely day to be outside. Four days ago the wind was so cold and strong and the humidity so low that daffodils, hellebores, acanthus and privet hedges wilted. Some of these plants are so damaged that they are not going to recover. Wow! Never seen that before
I have planted some dwarf french beans on a heating mat in our as yet unheated greenhouse. These are destined for the polytunnel. We have lettuce seedlings started – they will germinate without heat in February and March. Tom Thumb is good for the early season and then we start planting Little Gem. This lettuce is very dull bought from the supermarket but delicious when home grown.
I’ll be sowing tomato seeds any day now.