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1 to 11 of 11 posts
19 Jun 2017 15:52
I've managed, somehow, to actually grow and eat some things during my first year growing. Radishes and chard, mostly, so not the most difficult to grow but it still feels like an achievement.
After picking my baby onions and the next batch of radishes I'll have a lot of space free. I also have a few empty 8" pots and some smaller ones. I think I might plant some beetroot where the onions were and some fennel at the end of the month.
Is anyone still planting anything this late in the year? If so what are you planting?
19 Jun 2017 11:34
I was given a large sage plant as a gift because my own attempt at growing sage was a bit of an embarrassment.
The previous owner had just left it at the back door with little to no care and it had thrived. We've had three days of sweltering heat here and I've just been outside to find it looking like it's wilting. I was under the impression that sage is fairly drought tolerant, but my parsley and oregano that are right next to it seem to be doing fine. I've just watered it now and put it in the shade.
Here's some photos.
15 Jun 2017 08:36
Radishes and rainbow chard, a bit of rocket, various herbs and I think the onions that I overwintered are getting ready to come up. It's my first year growing veg and I've made a lot of rookie mistakes I think. My strawberry plant is still tiny and my chillies all died when the greenhouse fell apart while I was on holiday but I repotted some of them anyway and a couple might be bouncing back even though they were just growing in a pile of mud for a few days. I think I might have left it too long before putting the strawberries in a bigger pot. Is there still time for them to produce any fruit this summer?
14 Jun 2017 13:53
I have quite a few 8" terracotta plant pots which I've been using for various veg and herbs. Most stuff seems fine in them, but I have several very large herb plants which have been given to me in cheap plastic pots that they are outgrowing. The oregano is the one which seems to need a bigger pot, but I don't think it will hurt the sage or parsley. I also have an olive tree which I think will probably need progressively bigger pots over the years.
Does anyone have any sources for big pots, preferably terracotta or ceramic, that wont break the bank? I got the 8" ones from The Range for a quid each, but their bigger sizes don't seem much cheaper than anywhere else really. I wouldn't mind something a bit more interesting looking but I know that's a lot to ask, otherwise I might be tempted to rig up a mould and make some out of concrete but that has the potential to go horribly wrong.
14 Jun 2017 13:47
I made some planters this year out of an old, pine, double bed we had taking up space in the loft.
I'm not expecting them to last long, but I gave them a liberal coating of some clear outdoor varnish I found at Homebase. Only problem is that it wasn't cheap. Seems to have given it a matte, plastic coating but as far as I'm aware it wasn't polyurethane. I also put them on cheap casters from Screwfix.
Anything polyurethane or similar will keep the moisture out indefinitely if you recoat every couple of years. You could also paint it first, then varnish, but you wont be able to repaint it without revarnishing again afterwards. The only issue is that you'll need to keep the wood off the floor as the coating will break down quickly if it's in contact with it and the water will seep in. Your problem is that it seems as if you've already got rainwater in there, so if you coat it with anything now it'll just rot from the inside out.
Best bet would be to hope for some hot weather to dry the ply out. I don't think it'll last long in any case, but if it's free and does the job then it's not a huge loss.
12 Jun 2017 20:24
I have just moved my compost bin to get at the bindweed that was growing up through the rotting compost and as I forked through it I heard a lot of squeaking and found about eight or so little pink baby rats. They were about 2-3 inches long and looked about a day or two old. I don't know but they didn't seem to have any eyes, certainly not open and were moving like very newborn kittens, all wobbly. I didn't have the heart to kill them so we put them in a little box with some of the compost on top of them and left them for the their mother to sort them out. Either that or they'll die from cold or I might have hit a couple of them with my spade so I might have even killed a couple of them. I would rather let them live, vermin or not I keep thinking of the Mum coming back and finding her nest all broken apart and her babies scattered. I am feeling very guilty.See original post
They might be cute looking an innocent now, but they'll cause havoc when they're older and breeding themselves and getting in to your walls and ceilings. We had rats last summer when our old neighbours kept having a BBQ outside and leaving half eaten food lying out over night. We also had some at an old house we lived at, under the compost bin, I imagine it was because we were in the vicinity of the town center and not too far from a few takeaways, restaurants and bars. I do have a history of moving in next to people who don't maintain their gardens, which always seems to offer the rats a nice place to live.
Best idea is to kill them. Depending on whether you have pets or not, poison is generally the most effective way. Although if you've noticed them then someone else nearby probably has and it's likely that they're taking their own action against them. I used traps in the loft and roof space, but next door must have put poison down because they clearly started dying beneath our floorboards and stinking the living room out.
They'll go for poison because it seems like a free meal. It can take them a while to go near traps because they're unfamiliar and sometimes you can contaminate them with your smell and they'll just avoid it all together after that. Some people prefer humane traps, but at that point all you're doing is making them someone else's problem if you drive them off a few miles and release them. You also have to go out of your way, and deal with a live rat.
For anyone wondering, if you see what you think is a big mouse then it's a rat. Mice are only small and are all roughly the same size. Rats come in all shapes and sizes.
12 Jun 2017 12:11
It's only small so I think I'll probably leave it indoors.
I only have a walk in, plastic greenhouse which somehow blew over in the wind while I was on holiday. All my tomatoes were subsequently eaten down to stumps by slugs and birds and half my chili plants spilled out all over the place and got washed away by the rain. Some might be salvageable because they landed upright under the plastic sheet so they're on the kitchen windowsill now. Some strawberry plants also seem to have survived.
I planted some radishes out before I went away, the last batch got 100% germination but this lot didn't have my dog to chase the birds off all day for the first week, so I suspect that we've lost this batch to the pigeons too. I might be wrong and maybe they haven't popped up yet. Same thing with my second lot of rainbow chard. The ones I planted a couple of months ago grew amazingly well.
My onions seem to be small. Carrots are doing okay. Coriander didn't do too well, so I just got a sprinkle for one meal I cooked. Sage and thyme are a bit laughable, but I got a huge plant with this olive tree along with all the other herbs I could hope for so I might grow something else in their pots instead.
12 Jun 2017 01:26
I've recently been gifted a 2ft tall olive tree. I recently got back from Spain, where there were olive trees all over the place, and I'd assumed they were native to warmer climates.
Will it look after itself, or am I going to need to give it special treatment? I was doing well with my first year of gardening, but I suddenly had a disaster and lost some of my more successful crops so I'm wary of losing everything.
12 Jun 2017 01:20
So I live in a rented property next to an overgrown garden. We've been in touch with the estate agents managing the property next door and they said they'd get in touch with the landlord, but they either haven't or he's not bothered. Either way he isn't local. The less said about the couple who live next to us the better. At least they're relatively quiet.
Anyway, I'm constantly cutting back brambles which are growing over (and under) the fence. Some are getting to be about 7ft tall. I've taken to chucking the cuttings back over the fence because the green bins cost money to take away now.
I know it's ultimately a problem for our landlords and the council to ultimately solve but is there anything I can do to slow their destruction? The fences are in bad nick and need replacing already but I can see a summer of heavy growth causing havoc. Not to mention the constant influx of bog-standard weeds.
I'd take any suggestions from a novel way of cutting them back, to dumping a vat of sodium chlorate over the fence while laughing like a madman. Fire sounds nice but the fences are wooden.
13 Apr 2017 12:42
I have about a hundred radishes growing. They're in raised beds, under polythene sheets weighed down by bricks so I could control how much water they've had.
I haven't checked them for two days. They're doing much better than my other veg so I left them to it. I went to look at thinning them today and noticed that there's holes in the leaves of about five or six of them.
The raised beds are newly built and they're on casters so I can move them around and I thought not having the planters in contact with the ground might go some way towards curtailing slugs. They use new compost which I bought from the garden center earlier this spring.
The radish variety is sparkler, if that helps. After a quick check online, flea beetle seems possible however I've read up on how the larvae grow and it seems unlikely that they'd be in new compost since they seem to grow over winter and feed on early weeds. I'm not sure though.
The radishes are in a bed next to some lettuce and some french breakfast radish, which are just poking through and seem unaffected. Same with the dill. There's some rainbow chard in the next bed over which is also untouched.
Anyway here's a (not great quality) photo:
Last edited: 13 April 2017 12:42:57
06 Apr 2017 17:06
It's my first proper year growing fruit and veg. We live in a rented house with a decent size garden which is mostly grass and patio with one small border but no real space for growing anything.
I built some moveable planters on casters so I can move them about to make full use of the patio when we have people round in summer. I'm also trying to source a small greenhouse as soon as possible.
My setup is one planter that's just shy of 18" deep, one that's about 8" deep and one that's about as deep as a tomato bag for the tomatoes.
Shallow planter: Alternating rows of french breakfast radish & sparkler radish taking up maybe 50% of the space. Some lettuce leaves taking up most of the remaining space. In a small corner is some dill. I plan to plant radish continuously over the next few months.
Deep planter: About 50% carrots, 50% rainbow chard.
Tomato planter: 50% roma, 50% cherry tomato. The cherries might go in a hanging basket at some point.
Various trays: rocket, chillies and peppers waiting to be transplanted to pots when they're big enough. A strawberry plant, also for a hanging basket.
Herbs in pots: Coriander, Rosemary, Sage, Thyme, all on the windowsill in the kitchen.
And a large pot of onions which were the only thing that survived over winter and seem to be doing ok.
I planted everything about two weeks ago and nothing has sprouted as of yet but I think I see some of the radish starting to poke through. Everything gets full sun most of the day, although it's been fairly grey up here since I did the planting. We planted sunflowers, and judging by how much our paltry attempt at gardening failed last year we only expected two or three to grow. We currently have 21 growing but we'll probably throw most of them away, however the birds were at them right away so I've covered all my planters with some polythene sheet when neither me or the dog are around to keep them at bay. I assume the polythene will let light through and mimic a greenhouse somewhat but will it have any negative effects?
I'm a little concerned about watering. I was watering everything every few days but I read conflicting advice online, particularly surrounding different vegetables. Could anyone give me some concrete advice? I've read that everything needs to be moist, all the time, that you should water when the soil is dry to the touch, that you have to dig down to a spade's depth and water if it's dry down there, that you should water leafy greens more than other things, that you shouldn't shock radishes and carrots with a lot of water at once because they could split.
I imagine the rain will have a big impact on watering, but is it better to cover them and control the watering levels myself? Am I overthinking it?
Edit: Forgot to mention feeding. I have various plant foods, but I haven't put any to use yet.
Any help would be appreciated.
Last edited: 06 April 2017 17:09:20