Posted: 05/04/2015 at 09:46
Hi - I'm back and full of new and useful ideas for all to share. Course not as technical as I had feared, much more hands on with logical reasons for vertually everything with some hocus pocus thrown in, which I feel is too 'off the wall' to be taken seriously, so I shall not cover these points. Tips and Wrinkles excellent, mainly to do with recycling within the garden - eg. Don't waste money on Rafia for tying plants in - Use old Leaves from Gladioli, stripping them in half like papyrus, they stay soft yet firm and are wonderful for tying in soft growth like clematis. Just a note on best transplanting dates:-10th April and 23rd April.Due to rain and warmth pending to give surprisingly good growing days for April.Best time to control slugs - 25-27th April due to excessuve humidity in soil predicted during this week (See - I've learnt some new things!!) Will expand on all info during next week, but here is the Lunar Calender 6th April-23rd April
6/7th April - Flower Days Plant out container grown Perrenials and Shrubs including those retained in Nursery Beds. Prune forsythia/flowering currant to allow air to roots and plant out cauliflowers/broccoli sown 22-23 January.
8/9th April - Leaf Days Plant out lettuces sown 19-22nd March and prick out Cabbages and Brussel Sprouts/Kale sown the same dates (Mine should be ready to do by then as found them sprouted on my return yesterday). If you haven't grown your own buy and plant out herbs, remembering not only the good position beside the Kichen Door, but around square beds as Companion Plants. Thyme deter slugs/Chives deter Carrot Fly/Sage & Tansy deter butterflies from laying eggs on brassicas as hate smell (Brush brassicas regularly with bruised leaves of these herbs) Don't forget to buy in Comfrey Plants to make Teas to feed plants later in year. And - leave nettles alone at key points to eat young in soups and to encourage Peacock Butterflies.Keep sowing lettuces/rocket and spinach on leaf days for salads.
10/11/12th April - Fruit Days Sow Courgettes//Pumpkins in pots placing seed edge up to avoid rotting. The French recommend peat pots but I know that you may resist this - The Germans recommend a mix of home compost with no manure added. Grow on in greenhouse or closed cold frame at 18-20C and place 3 seeds per pot choosing the strongest once sprouted. (I can never resist keeping 2 out of 3 and transplanting No2 to second pot (Greedy! and I feel sorry for healthy No2!) Sow Wrinkled peas like Kelvedon Wonder outside next to Early Peas which should be rocketing on now. Do not sow them next to Broad Beans they will not get on together (Not sure why - but French & Germans adament on this one) If you are grafting fruit trees - now is the time to seal grafts onto old stock.
13/14th April - Root Days Sow turnips outside to harvest in 2 months time. Plant out beetroot grown in trays in adjacent row and sow carrots next to leeks to discourage carrot fly.
15th April - Flower Day Sow where you wish them to flower all hardy annuals including sunflowers. Sow balance of annuals that are frost tender undercover for planting out in May.
16/17/18th April - Leaf Days Sow Celery in Nursery Bed under cover (Soil temp in preference 11c (I still sow in Cold greenhouse this early) Sow outside Swiss Chard/Spinach and Beetroot (For leaves) - Make sure that you water the soil that the seed is going to lie on -then cover with dry soil, allowing dawn dew to keep soil moist as plenty of rain still around to water for you.
19th April - Fruit Day - Sow Cucumbers if you missed the first date due to cold and final tomatoes for growing on in greenhouse. Sow Dwarf Beans in wide deep pots to grow on in greenhouse until May when they can be transplanted as a bunch outside.
20/21/22nd/23rd April - Root Days Sow Salsify & Scorzonera/Parsnips