Latest posts by greenjude

Sad plant!

Posted: 10/10/2015 at 11:43

I've just enlarged the pic - should've done that in the first place - and it's definitely a wallflower. It could be the bedding type which is usually grown as a biennial thought it's actually a short-lived perennial. I've kept them growing for 3 years and they can grow into an amazing bush before they just peter out.

If it flowers only in spring, it's a bedder. If it flowers all summer, it's Erysimum. They don't live that long either, I think because they flower themselves to death. My Bowles Mauve has flowered non-stop, including winter, for four years now. I keep thinking it's finished, give it a trim and back it comes.

I've also found that there are buds left on leggy flowery stalks that do well in a bottle of water tucked among other plants. I often use cut flowers in the garden. Then you can have sun-loving flowers in shady places.

Reusing pots and trays

Posted: 10/10/2015 at 11:29

I hope it wasn't from your ear, Jo!

Reusing pots and trays

Posted: 10/10/2015 at 00:33

I've found they go dry inside the bag too. You're supposed to be able to plant them but after some disasters I always remove them.

I also stopped washing pots and trays after hearing nurseryman Bob Brown say 'What do plants grow in? Dirt! Washing pots is a waste of time!' I do wash for seeds and cuttings that are going in one of my heated propagators, or for indoor plants. Everything else, I don't bother and I've never had a problem. And I've potted thousands!

Sad plant!

Posted: 10/10/2015 at 00:25

It looks a bit like an erysimum to me, like 'Bowles Mauve'. And I can see some shoots low down in the stems. Whatever it is, if you cut it back to these it'll be fine. If it's at all tender, wait until spring, otherwise do it now. If you don't have ground to put it in, give it a bigger pot.

preserving tomatoes

Posted: 18/09/2015 at 13:56

Hi Doogie. Yes, you're right. I don't eat jam, but jars from savoury stuff would be just as good. I might try both methods to see if there's any difference in flavour. It's a matter of having enough time, as usual! And I'll certainly try your method of drying. It'll have to be a very big jar to last more than 6 weeks!

preserving tomatoes

Posted: 18/09/2015 at 11:11

Hi Zoomer, you're welcome to join in.

Hi Bob. That sounds beautiful. I like things that freeze.

Hi Doogie. Those recipies both sound wonderful. To be honest, I tend to avoid the faff of sterilising jars, which is why I wanted to freeze. On the other hand, this sounds worth the effort. I don't think mine would last 6 weeks either!

I've got 26 plants of 8 varieties, so there's plenty to work with. (And I've only got myself to feed, but I love tomatoes!)

preserving tomatoes

Posted: 17/09/2015 at 21:27

Hi folks

I have lots of lovely tomatoes that I want to dry. I'm going to rely on the oven rather than the sun. Does anyone have any tips on storage and how long will they keep? I know I can freeze toms but the flavour is never as good, and I love the intense tomato-y taste of them fried on toast. I don't want  to make pickles, chutneys and the like.


Posted: 17/07/2015 at 13:10

I slice and blanche 1 minute in the microwave, then let them cool and dry on the grill pan mesh thingy (can't remember its name!). Then I bag and freeze them. They keep their texture and flavour better with blanching.

re-using compost in containers

Posted: 28/05/2015 at 17:05

Which?Gardening did a trial about 2 years ago and found it ok to re-use. They just fluffed it up and added slow-release fertiliser. I've been doing it for years and I've never had a problem. Do look out for pests like vine weevil though.

Bush Identification and advice...

Posted: 22/05/2015 at 01:04

Could it be a Griselinia? hey're often used for hedging in coastal areas.

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