Top Terrace plot

The top terrace area was weeded and a thin layer of composted manure was added. Then it was covered with plastic in order to stop weeds and to keep off my cat Jenson. This plot is divided into 3 areas which are rotated. So there will be beans, parsnips and kale.

top terrace prepared for growing
top terrace prepared for new veggies

The middle part was sown with parsnip seeds. These did not germinate at all. So I decided to germinate the rest of my packet on a damp sheet of paper towel. I put this in a gravel tray with another one for the top. I kept this on the windowsill in my house. About half of them sprouted and then I put these sprouts in the ground to see if they would grow.

sprouted parsnips growing

This is the parsnip bed. The countess parsnips on the left have done better than the guernsey on the right. As I do not have any seeds left I have added a few left over lettuce seedlings.

My kale seeds were doing well but I had to remove them from the greenhouse as they did not like being in there. I do not have a cold frame as I have run out of flat ground to situate it. I might put it on the early sprouting brassica area next year. I take the plants out of the greenhouse during the day if they are getting ready to be planted.

kale seedlings
red Russian kale starting to grow

I transplanted two red Russian kale and 4 black nero kale. They were planted quite deeply to make sure they don’t fall over later in the year. Although it has been too cold and wet for white butterflies this year, I still kept them under Enviromesh.

The last part of the top terrace bed is for runner beans. I first grew them last year, but they did not do well. I just had a few pods and I saved the seed. I am trying again this year using this saved seed. The seed is Czar runner bean.

czar runner beans

I started the seeds off in the house in some root trainers with a plastic cover. The first set of seeds did nothing, I think they must have rotted away. The second lot gave me about 50% germination. I am now waiting for my third sowing which are in the house, just starting to sprout. Fingers crossed I hope to get one bean per my 12 beans poles.

Been a while!

After my painting, I had a bad reaction to all the fumes and this lasted quite a while.  I also then had an accident when trying to prune my acer tree and lost my hearing in one ear.   Neither was 2018 a great year in my garden due to the strange weather and the lack water and a saga of broken hosepipes.  And my camera and computer needed replacing. So I focussed on learning to knit and this year started my knitting blog at www.wickedwoollies.co.uk on my new, self-build pc. 

Meanwhile I started 2019 hopefully that this would be a better year for me.  I bought my seeds and made my plans. I started the seeds according to Charles Dowding calendar and waited for nicer weather. The nice weather came but only for a few moments now and then. The wet weather made the weeds grown and it was too wet to get out and do much.

Then the weeds took over and then my gardening help had a stroke, I found myself having to figure out what to do with a strimmer and a hedge cutter myself. I learnt to use the strimmer but have not yet got courage enough to try the hedge trimmer yet.

I took a few weeks and strimmed where I could, then focused on the veg areas of my garden, starting with the plastic square foot beds which are the easiest to weed and prepared. I had started seeds off in compost and kept on the windowsills in my house as it was too cold outside in the greenhouse. Fortunately the spinach, beetroot and the lettuce seedlings grew well enough to start planting out in late March.

growing lettuce in square metre raised bed
planted out lettuce seedlings

The lettuce took a while to get going but I took a few leaves now and then by May. But as the weather got colder and wetter, my desire for salad leaves dwindled and by June the lettuce were filling the bed.

lettuce doing well
need some warm weather to eat this lettuce

And the beetroot and spinach did well also. I had loads of spinach on my sandwiches before it bolted at the end of May.

beetroot and spinach doing well

I had planted some pots with garlic at the end of last year as none of the veg beds were ready to grow anything.

growing garlic in pots
growing garlic in pots

I had never grown garlic in pots before so not sure what would happen. Fortunately by June they were still growing and had not died.

garlic growing well with blueberries
blueberries and garlic

My two blueberry plants were keeping them company. I planted these late last year and am not sure if I can keep the birds/sqirrels from stripping them bare.

The mid and top terrace areas were weeded and prepared (a thin coating of manure compost). I also put plastic down to stop my cat digging. My mesh bed was created and plantings were some kaibroc or sticcoli, red shallots and red and purple carrots. The black plastic was uncovered for 5 varieties of potatoes (red scarlet, elfe, kestrel, Vivaldi and arran).

The potatoes have been growing well in front of the mesh

potatoes growing well

and behind.

In these areas there are 5 varieties of potato (red scarlet, elfe, kestrel, Vivaldi and arran). I can not tell from the plants which is which as they all look alike and are the same size.

Under the mesh the onions are a bit slow to grow, and the carrots are not doing well. I have only got 4 out of probably 100 seeds that have germinated. Looks like I need to sow some more.

low germination of carrots

One carrot look like it might take over the whole area though!

Lots of Seeds sown

The weather is staying fine so I have taken advantage and started sowing my seeds.  Some indoors in modules and some outside. I have sown spinach outdoors and put in some leaf beet. I have also sown, cucumbers, squash, courgettes, lettuce, celery, and kale.  Still got lots still to do.  Pak choi are surviving.

The seeds I sowed last month have not done as well as I had hoped.  My red tomato and my peas have not done well at all.   Only a couple of peas have come up and they might not survive.  Mangetout are OKish but not all came up.  I have put them out with the beans as I am not sure about growing beans as I dont digest them.  I am going to grow more lettuce instead.

I am spending a lot of time carrying buckets of water up the hill to keep everything wet.

Rain is due from today and if it comes I will be pleased.

 

Potatoes in last week…bit late I think

potatoes.png

With weather reports saying that it will be cold with night freezes, I thought it was best to put the potatoes in the greenhouse for now.  They are Charlottes and I planted them a couple of days ago.   Put them in a mixture of sieved veg compost and sieved farmyard manure with a bit of homemade compost.  Will put them outside after the frosts.