Latest posts by OldCompostHeap

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Talkback: Broad beans

Posted: 09/11/2014 at 12:30

See my post above. Try Stereo for mangetoute BEANS in spring as an alternative.

Talkback: Broad beans

Posted: 07/03/2014 at 12:28

I always plant Aqualdulce/Aqualdulce Claudia last week of October/first week November depending on the weather. Replacements are sown February/March under glass to fill in the gaps and provide succession.

However due to the lack of ice/snow/frost this is the first spring that I see no gaps and the plants are standing up to 6" high.

The variety that I first sowed last year in March was Stereo. This provides small mangetoute broad beans and would be ideal for people with little space.

 I do not normally like large broad beans, so we pick early and the large ones are preferred by SWMBO.

Japanese wineberries

Posted: 01/03/2014 at 16:15

At the present time, my Wineberry looks dead, but will spring into life soon. So looking at one now will be dissappointing.

Rhubarb, Rhubarb, Rhubarb

Posted: 28/02/2014 at 12:40

By the way see http://www.rhs.org.uk/Plants/Plant-science/National-Plant-Collections-at-the-RHS/The-National-Plant-Collection-of-rhubarb for the RHS Wisley collection of 100 cultivars.

They mention Harlow Carr also has a collection.

Rhubarb, Rhubarb, Rhubarb

Posted: 28/02/2014 at 12:32

If you want to see varieties of rhubarb growing, then a visit to Clumber Park near Retford if you live nearby. The National Trust walled garden there has scores of different old varieties. Unfortunately they do not sell any roots.

Japanese wineberries

Posted: 28/02/2014 at 12:23

I discovered one when I took over my allotment. It is currently(pruned) 4' wide and 6' high trained on the side of my fruit cage. So you need some room to grow them. The berries are deep red in clusters like a small raspberry in size and tart in taste. They provide an alternative to all the soft fruit that we grow. Given your plot size, I would consider some alternatives

What type of peas.

Posted: 20/02/2014 at 14:20

It is difficult to beat a frozen pea if you are faced with total loss as above.

I grow mangetout sown in a section of guttering each year filled with multipurpose. These are allowed to germinate and grow until about 4 inches high in my greenhouse. Then hardened off, before sliding out of the guttering into their alloted position in the allotment. These are covered with fine mesh to keep the birds away. The empty guttering is refilled and the process is repeated . So we get to pick mangetout throughout the summer. If too many they are frozen for the winter.

This method can be employed for ordinary peas, but dwarf varieties are better if you only have small in height cloches. 

Growing Asparagus from Seed

Posted: 18/02/2014 at 16:45

I hope you are in for the long haul!

I sowed some asparagus seed last year like you in modules and planted them out in the summer in a specially prepared bed in my son's garden. They grew quite well and I have lots of tall wispery aparagus  ferns. The family joke is that is that they will be my son's inheritance by the time they are thick enough to cut. Now I know why aparagus crowns are the way to go if you can afford them.

Can I move a foxglove now ?

Posted: 12/02/2014 at 11:17

I had this problem with self seeded foxgloves in my plot and were in the way when I was digging. So as I came to them, I dug them up with plenty of soil and took them back home where I potted them on and placed them in a cold frame. Afterwards they have been taken out  and are awaiting spring and SWMBO decides where they are to be placed.

Clearing brambles...

Posted: 11/02/2014 at 15:16

Personally I would plant potatoes on this patch. They have a way of clearing/cleaning ground. I remember people used to plant potatoes in their front gardens of newly built houses before attempting planting a lawn. Any remaining rambling roots of the blackberry can be removed when you dig your potato crop in the summer. As you might guess I do not use any form of weed killer as I dig out the bindweed and marestail etc each year on my allotment.

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