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Latest posts by Italophile

courgette seedlings

Posted: 26/05/2012 at 06:34

Okay, the very first leaves - cotyledons - that appear after germination are what nourish the baby plant. As true leaves form and nourish the plant, the cotyledons' use is over and they usually change colour to yellow or almost white and usually fall off. Or you can take them off once they've faded.

Good idea not to have the mix too wet, too.


Posted: 25/05/2012 at 13:12

You sure can grow courgettes on compost heaps as long as there's plenty of sun as figrat says. Squash and pumpkins, too. Look at the number of volunteer veg that pop up from compost heaps.

Blue spots on my Chilli leaves

Posted: 25/05/2012 at 13:06

Blue chalky spots are a new one on me. Can you post a photo?

Trouble with Gherkins

Posted: 25/05/2012 at 07:42

Definitely. They need soil temps in at least the high teens to prosper.

courgette seedlings

Posted: 24/05/2012 at 20:00

Are they true leaves or the very first leaves that appeared when the seed germinated, the cotyledons? If they're the very first leaves, they will usually die off as the plant grows.

courgette seedlings

Posted: 24/05/2012 at 12:44

Drying out how? Changing colour? Crisping up? In the meantime, the most common problem with seedlings is overwatering, causing leaves to turn pale. Awaiting further into.


Posted: 24/05/2012 at 07:41

Lantana means different things in different climates. In Australia it's just about classified as a noxious weed. A bit like Morning Glory. Given plenty of sun and some moisture and they will go like the clappers, spreading and suffocating anything in their path.

You probably won't have that problem!

Talkback: Planting out tomatoes

Posted: 24/05/2012 at 06:27

Bit late now, Mandy, but you didn't have to chuck 'em. Purple leaves aren't fatal. It's usually a sign of cold and a lack of nutrition. Some warmth and TLC would have resurrected them.

Some lovely writing on your blog, too. Congrats.


Posted: 23/05/2012 at 10:36

Good tip, Alina. I blanch the stems for about 30 seconds, then the leaves for about 10 seconds, drain and dry them them very well, toss them with some nice vinegar, extra virgin olive oil, and P&S. Delicious.

Bettyslad - early Feb in your climate sounds optimistic in the extreme. I don't plant them here in central Italy until at least early April, and I suspect it's warmer here than where you are!

squash seed germination

Posted: 23/05/2012 at 10:23

Could be, unfortunately, unless you have a heated greenhouse. They need ambient and soil temps into the 20s to really prosper. Anything under about 15C and they will just sit there. 

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