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Latest posts by biofreak

Gardening by the Moon

Posted: 05/01/2015 at 14:32

Happy New Year everyone and may it be a good growing one! I have taken stock of successes and failures in 2014 - No I will never grow asparagus peas again - You were all right how awful they were to eat - and I had tons of them. Made good compost though. Salad crops worked well, and we did have a crispy lettuce with smoked salmon on Xmas Day! I also disagree with some of the pruning advice but it has worked so I shall try again for a third year AND brace yourselves, I have received a Biodynamic Gardening Calender/Diary for 2015. It is a nightmare to get to grips with , and I thought that the Lunar Cycle could be complicated! Still I am going to give it a go - Does anyone else garden this way. My Mum did for years and we always seemed to have wonderful crops. Anyway here goes with Lunar Calender for 5-16th January. Happy Gardening.

5th Jan 2015 - Flower Day Plant Bare Root trees & shrubs, soaking their feet in sticky mud before planting out. Water generously despite rain.

6/7th Jan - Leaf Days If no frost remove mistletoe and tape over resulting wounds on bark/

8/9/10th Jan - Fruit Days (No gardening after 2.17pm on the 9th) Plant bare root fruit trees mixing compost with hoof & horn meal. Plant bare root soft fruit and erect stake and wire supports for raspberries.

11/12/13th Jan - Root Days (No gardening after 11.30am on 12th Moon ascending) In mild regions on well drained light soil plant garlic and shallots for cropping in July.

14/15/16th Jan - Flower Days Plant up tuberous begonias and cannas in greenhouse or conservatory. Place in full light between 15-20c and water from time to time.

Can I just say Thank you to everyone who has added comments during 2014 - They have encouraged me to keep writing this diary, and it is so good to hear all points of view.

Happy New Year once again.

Gardening by the Moon

Posted: 19/12/2014 at 15:36

Hi everyone - Just finished getting ready for final Xmas Street Market this w/e - Shall be glad to spend some time in the garden away from crowds and noise.

Have just cut lettuce and Spring onion tops for a quick salad - Can't believe how mild it is but have spotted first snowdrop!!

Herewith Lunar Calender 18th-31st December - Final Report for the Year.

18/19/20 December Flower Days If it is not frosty prune spring flowering clematis. Plant amarylis.

21 December Leaf Day - If no frost prune trees cutting out old wood. Prune hazels and tie in best branches to keep tidy in hedging.

22/23rd december - Fruit Days In mild areas sow Broad Beans. Transplant grafted baby fruit trees in sheltered spot.

24th December - Root Day No gardening after 11.40am (Thank goodness need to cook!)

25th december - Root Day MERRY CHRISTMAS - Having made plans for 2015 Think of which seeds you would like to buy and order quickly to avoid disappointment.

26th December - Flower Day - In warm greenhouse sow begonias (semperflorens) and pelargoniums, do not cover begonia seed.

27/28/29/30th December - Leaf Days Do not garden on 29th Before 2.30pm otherwise if it is not frosty harvest spinach/lambs lettuce/ winter cabbage and brussels. In the house germinate beansprouts and soya for crunchy salads.

31st December - Fruit Day In mild regions sow broad beans and round peas (not wrinkled) Mine are doing well in the greenhouse, so may pop some more in to get some fresh air.

So there we are - end of the year and generally pleased with results. Temptation to garden outside lunar advice is dreaful, but I have stuck with it and whilst I will drop some crops totally, I think the general principals with regard to sowing and sprouting are excellent, and I can see a pattern forming. Will continue into Feb to complete the annual cycle as promised. Then if anyone wants me to continue writing Diary I shall be happy to do so.

Have a wonderful Christmas and Happy Gardening.

Gardening by the Moon

Posted: 02/12/2014 at 16:35

Lunar Calender 1st - 17th December as away next week.

1//2/december: Leaf Days Harvest Brussel Sprouts/Lambs Lettuce/Lettuce and spinach. Protect outdoor salad crops with tunnels. 2nd No gardening before 1.35pm Moon at lowest point so no power to aid gardeners.

3/4 december: Fruit Days In mild regions continue sowing round (not wrinkled) peas and mangetouts. Try sowing pear and apple seeds in pots with a sandy mix in greenhouse

5/6//7 December: Root Days. Sow round radishes and short variety carrots under cover. Air in mild weather. Protect from slugs and cover frames with straw in cold weather.

8/9 december; Flower Days If there is no frost plant bare root roses and shrubs.

10/11 December: Leaf Days. Force chicory. Outside frost periods plant hedgerow with bare root trees.

12/13/14 december Fruit Days. 12th No gardening after 6pm (Too dark I think!)

Prune fruit treese situated in windy positions, removing old branches in particular and clearing centres of crossing branches. Brush moss and lichen from trunks. Lightly compost root areas and add leaf mould as well. Lift stray raspberries and replant.

15/16/17 december Root Days 16th No gardening at all. Ascending moon. Continue to prepare heavy soil for next season. In mild regions plant white and violet garlic on un manured plot. Harvest parsnips/artichokes/salsify and scorsonora. Hold back good roots of horseradish and artichokes as these will be useful for transplanting for fresh crops in new plot next Spring.

Happy Gardening.


Gardening by the Moon

Posted: 18/11/2014 at 17:53

Lunar Calender 18th Nov - 28th Nov

18/19/20th Nov - Root Days In mild regions plant last shallots, otherwise lift and store root crops as needed remembering parsnips are better off left in ground and lifted after a frost. Improve compacted ground with compost.No gardening on 19th before 1.20pm

21/22 nov - Flower Days Cut back spent perennials, burn spent woody stems or chop and put on compost hea[ (I burn alot and use potash on raspberries) Do not trim grasses but let them die back naturally and tidy in the Spring. Cut out old wood from roses and treat cut ends with Bordeaux Mixture to stop disease getting in.

23 Nov - Leaf Day Force chicory, and stop planting out cabbages. Plant ivy and virgin creepers against walls, and continue planting hedgerow trees like ash.

24/25/26th Nov - Fruit Days In mild areas sow Broad beans and round (not wrinkled) peas.

27/28th Nov - Root Days No gardening on 27th after 6.10pm. Check out stored veg and rub off sprouting points on potatoes.

I have just picked beetroot/celery/batavia and spring onions from outside (not greenhouse) -still so mild did not expect to eat my own salad in November! How about you? How is it going? happy Gardening.





Empty Space??

Posted: 02/11/2014 at 10:43

How about a herb bed? The soil sounds ideal and fennel or angelica would make a super centre piece with edible flowers making the outer circle you could make the bed pretty and practical.

Asparagus Crowns

Posted: 02/11/2014 at 10:33

I dug my asparagus bed up yesterday as wanted to see what was going  on following miserable crop despite 4yrs old - Found 7 giant crowns like you and lots of miserable spindles. realised that these were my efforts at growing from splitting - As crops marked by Bean sticks had been from giants specimans. I would recommend buying in new stock instead. Seems a long wait from smaller plants grown oneself.

Gardening by the Moon

Posted: 02/11/2014 at 10:22

Buried myself indoors this morning as high winds and lashing rain. So glad I spent last 2 summery days gardening. Thrilled Broad Beans and Spring onions have sprouted in greenhouse (on top of staging and netted well away from hungry voles!) Dug up asparagus bed yesterday as fed up with it - Threw away weedy specimens and replanted 7 giant survivors in a square plot and closer together (I know this is not the classic method but tryining it out to save space and open up more land for veg)

Here is the Lunar Calender 1-17th November.

1st Nov - Root Day Sow short carrots and radishes under cloches

2nd Nov - Flower Day In mild regions prune hydrangeas and cut out old wood.

3/4/5th Nov - Leaf Days On 3rd No gardening before 5.30am (As if we would!) Harvest lambs lettuce/spinach/lettuce and if you have had a frost the first Brussel Sprouts (Think this must have been written assuming that we are all freezing during a normal November!) Cut down Tarragon and cover with leaf mould.

6//7th Nov - Fruit Days If you have olives (possible but not likely in UK ) after they have dropped take them to your local mill to extract the oil (Inserted this piece as felt it would be interesting for you to see what we get up to in France! -Store apples in dry and airy place checking regularly for one's 'going over' or bruised.

8/9/10th Nov - Root Days Benefit from this quiet period to make a list of your successes and failures and plan ahead for next year. Take particular note of soil tests results after the growing season to note what nutrition/fertilizers you may need to add to boost next year's crops.

11/12 Nov - Flower Days After the first frosts cut down and lift Begonias/Dahlias/Cannas and Gladioli. Bring them in and store upside down in a cool dark dry place with air circulating between tubers/bulbs.Dig up and throw away annuals. Plant potted clematis. Plant Day Lilies and Paonies.

13th Nov - Leaf Day Blanch Endive/Cardoons and Celery. Wash off dandelions and cover with cloches for tasty winter salads.

14th-17th Nov - Fruit Days No gardening before 6am on the 15th. Otherwise if it is not frosty Plant bare root fruit trees, enriching the ground with compost and bonemeal. Stake well against winter winds, water well with 2 watering cans full of rainwater in preference to tap water. When leaves have fallen from fruit trees spray with Bordeaux Mixture to protect against winter bacteria and insect attack. Take cuttings from Figs by cutting off an 8-10inch (20-30cm) piece of woody stem and put a cross in the bottom before potting up in sand and compost and place against a north facing wall. (Sorry don't know why Does anyone know?) Earth up Broad Beans sown 9-10th October to protect against root rock)

Well there we are - How have you got on this year. How were the harvests - Any different to standard gardening? I shall continue Calender into Feb 2015 as promised but it would be interesting to see how many people felt a benefit using the Lunar Calender. I definately have found it strange how dates have tallied with sowing and sprouting plus planting out, but I cannot honestly say that my crops have been better so far. Year 3 will give me a better picture I think. Happy Gardening.

Gardening by the Moon

Posted: 20/10/2014 at 16:57

Just returned from UK clutching a new fork and shovel plus a packet of Broad beans. None of these items available here! Following quick inspection of potager and greenhouse remembered had to write Calender! Have just sown Rye as green manure and agree all brassicas doing really well obelixx

Lunar Calender 20-30th October

20th October Fruit Day - Plant out pot grown fruit, and chop off spent strawberry leaves and burn them to avoid spreading any diseases. Treat pruned trees and raspberry canes with Bordeaux Mixture to protect cut surfaces.

21/22/23 (No gardening 23rd)/24 October Root Days - Plant Shallots and gather roots that don't like cold and wet weather. Protect other root crops with fleece or cloches. Thin carrots sown 3/4th October. Plant out onions sown 6/7th September

25th October - Flower Day Plant out pansies and violas sown 11/12th August Finish planting out shrubs and perennials sold in containers. Cut down Begonias/cannas/dahlias and gladioli if they are dying back.

26/27th October Leaf Days - Plant chicory roots and cover them with straw or black plastic to blanche.

28/29th October Fruit Days - In mild regions sow dwarf peas (not wrinkled varieties) and Mange tous. (Think this is very optimistic in UK but who knows with this wonderful weather that we are having - I think I'll sow some in the greenhouse to go with the broad beans that I bought back from UK yesterday)

30/31st October Root Days - Sow Root Chervil and cover lightly with soil, thin out when they have 4-5 leaves.


There we are - Happy Gardening and happy Halloween!


Greenhouse in Winter

Posted: 04/10/2014 at 17:04

Apparently the voles in the front garden are tastier than in the back, many heads found in middle of kitchen floor each morning! Cats need to have a sense of direction!

Just a footnote on original question - I do not want to grow lettuce. Can I grow Broad Beans/Peas?

Figs in Pots & Mulberries

Posted: 04/10/2014 at 17:01

Did you mix it with garden soil or use it neat? Coming to UK next week, so would like to buy right thing.

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