Latest posts by Madeleine51

Brassicas - to fertilise or not?

Posted: 14/06/2014 at 13:32

Thanks everyone. I shall certainly keep the plants well watered and I might try giving the ones in the garden some tomato feed  to see if this helps. The allotment ones I shall leave as they are and see which batches produce the best results. Useful having some on different sites to experiment with.  Right now I am trying to get some Autumn seedlings ready for planting so I have even more for later when the spring batch becomes exhausted.  All trial and error but I do love my broccoli!

Thanks and Happy Growing All!


Brassicas - to fertilise or not?

Posted: 12/06/2014 at 11:24

Hello All

I have grown and had some wonderful broccoli with lovely heads of about 6".  So deliciously sweet and tender. Have had lots of compliments on it from other growers who have had no success. The variety is F1 Green Magic. 

Prior to  planting the little plants out at the beginning of April, as usual  I raked in some growmore about a fortnight before.  I picked the first successful heads as above last weekend and the plants now have lots of little side spears which I would like to encourage to grow larger.  My question is, do I need to add some more GMore now or at some point or some other fertiliser to get them to mature nicely?  Would this encourage them to grow ok? I don't want to be disappointed with them boulting and/or becoming loose and seedy headed.

What do people think?


big allotment on bb2

Posted: 23/04/2014 at 23:21

I'm disappointed with Allotment for all sorts of reasons. I think it would have been nice to feature one of the plots each week to see close up what has been grown.  It scans them too quickly. Also, how sad after all those months of creating their plots that a pair of contestants have to go. Couldn't everyone remain to the end of the series when the results of the various challenges can be assessed by the judges?

Also, I hope the preserves lady rinses her mouth out after trying each relish etc. otherwise it must influence the taste of the following ones.


Talkback: How to make a comfrey feed

Posted: 23/04/2014 at 23:07

The previous allotment owner planted comfrey across the back of my plot and after slowly reaching that area to try to get it organised, I can ascertain that it certainly does come up everywhere. I have planted some in a pot for use as a fantastic accelerator in the compost heap and for fertiliser but in order to exterminate the rest I am going to have to resort to repeated attacks with weedkiller. This year I really had been looking forward to planting out raspberries in autumn there but I shall probably have to postpone that idea until I am certain the comfrey battle has been won. I don't want to be digging around the rasp roots to get it out and thus cause suckering.

Oh what fun!

Companion planting

Posted: 23/04/2014 at 22:42

Thanks everybody.  Judging by Tootles book, it looks as if I have completely planned my veggie patches wrong this year and should have been armed with The Companion Garden last autumn when planning what to do.   My brassicas are in the bed next to tomatoes and the tomatoes have potatoes on the other side of them.  I have sown some marigolds (do they have to be French ones?) to go with my runner beans to keep off black fly and some nasturtiums to put with my broccoli and cabbages.  I read also somewhere that cauliflowers do not do well with broccoli and cabbages.

Re Sweetcorn - is it really practical to grow s/corn next to runner beans, given that they are both tall crops? Thinking about the light aspect for each. I had wondered about growing them at right angles to runners.

All so mind boggling!

Emptying a compost bin

Posted: 20/04/2014 at 16:22

I grow some comfrey in a pot on my allotment and every now and then throw some of the leaves into my primary bin  to help accelerate decomposition. I use two wooden bins and empty the contents into bin 2 at the end of winter and I think the comfrey def seems to speed things up.

Companion planting

Posted: 20/04/2014 at 15:48

Hi All.

I would like to try companion planting to help keep away pests and encourage healthy growth in the allotment and vege garden at home.

Have any of you experienced growers some tips on this and are there any definite no-no's on this subject?

Many thanks




Heather and how to care for it?

Posted: 06/04/2014 at 12:19

I have had several heathers in my garden for many years.  I believe they prefer ericacious compost (they  grow on healthlands in the wild which are usually very acidic).  I incorporate the E compost into the soil before planting and then give them a mulch of same every two or a three years.  The main thing about heathers is to always give them a good "hair cut" after they have flowered otherwise they become ragged and untidy. Cut them back to just below where they flowered (the seeds remain)  with scissors if the plants are small or with shears as they get bigger.  Good luck! Lovely plants 

Bamboo canes

Posted: 06/04/2014 at 11:53

Thanks everyone.  Feel as if I have been a naughty girl to neglect them  I shall definitely take more care from now on and give them more TLC after using them. In addition at home, looks as if the best solution would be to beg OH if I can have some rafter space in his garage to keep the the long canes.

Great. Problem solved! 

Bamboo canes

Posted: 04/04/2014 at 21:04


Thanks for replying - been on granny duty since posting this yesterday.

I generally keep them either lying flat on the ground at the back of my allotment or along some brackets my husband has put on the back of the workshop. They become brittle and snap easily.

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