Ahead of splitting up my growing collection of plant life between family and allotment, I wandered round the garden this morning with camera in hand. Some things, in particular, I wanted to document, in an attempt not to do things the same way next year.
The nasturtiums are brilliant. A packet of 25 (26, actually) seeds bought for £1 has all germinated and filled my garden with colour. This afternoon I took most of them and gave them to my sister, who wanted to re-vamp her tubs and containers. This variety (Gleam, mixed) grows very quickly, is semi-trailing and adores rubbish soil.
Having heard that they should be potted up using the floor sweepings, I’ve taken to sticking them in tired compost which has already been in use for months. The plants seem to love it and it creates more flowers. I put a few plants in fresh compost to see how they fared, and whilst the leaves are lush and massive, there are far fewer flowers.
The golden courgettes are (in my experience) as close as it gets to foolproof: plant, water, wait. I haven’t had anything struck down with disease and only the occasional one fails to thrive. I’m quite sure that this is down to a combination of chance, a sunny location and growing them in containers. I know people who repeatedly lost the identical crops to slugs before they really got started this year, planting into soil beds. You can actually grow these on very well and plant them out when they’re big enough to be less appealing. (I know this because I have routinely left mine in small pots too long and planted during flowering with no discernible ill effects on growth or cropping.)
It’s not all bright, though. I’m very much a fan of the myriad shades of green too. 🙂
Tomorrow the plan is to get the pumpkins up to the allotment and planted, before the vines get too long to fit in the car. I need to locate butterfly netting before I can plant out some broccoli and cauliflower up there, but have to fill the raised bed anyway.
A well-timed visit to my local garden centre saw me take away 420 litres of massively-reduced compost for a grand total of £12, £10 of which was provided by a gift voucher. I’m feeling much happier about cheating with potting compost if it doesn’t also cost ridiculous amounts of money to do. Also, it only take a matter of minutes to fill a bed, especially if you’ve dropped the bags a few times to break them up a bit.
I end, however, on my finest achievement to date: leaving them so long (February was when the seeds were sown) that I have managed to create bonsai tomato plants.