Latest posts by Palaisglide

Hello Forkers - February 2017 Edition

Posted: 19/02/2017 at 09:51

What Happened? Went to sleep as normal last night counting Dinosaurs woke up this morning and found i was a full year older, how does that happen. Looked in the mirror hair the normal Ash Blonde my Daughters call it white? the usual number of creases on my face, Humour lines I say Daughters call them wrinkles has the world gone mad.

Lovely Granddaughters came yesterday and did lunch, today all of them are coming to lunch, thank goodness i do not have to cook it.

May be absent for a day or so, I have other memories this week, they never go away.


Greenhouse set up

Posted: 17/02/2017 at 23:36

Clare Your greenhouse supplier will also sell Aluminium staging (the name of the benches in the greenhouse) they come flat pack you bolt them together and they are the right height, fit them on the side opposite the one the sun shines in. You can have a little part for potting if you wish though it takes up room where you could put plants, I have a potting bench in the garage but light enough to drag out into the sunshine if we get any.

You will need heat in Winter if you wish to grow things, usually we just store plants that need protection although I do have a Frost Guard electric fan heater it rarely kicks in.

Get your G/house up and ready then we will make a plan of what to grow and when, there is no rush end of March is the start of most planting and seed sowing.



Posted: 17/02/2017 at 14:56

My Generation have vivid memories of the Concentration camp tattoos plus the nazi party ones as well, not a good picture and i was never enticed to have one done as some Squaddies did in Alexandria and Port Said usually drunk out of their minds. If we were intended to have body embellishments we would be born with them. Just my opinion of course.


Summerhouse inside

Posted: 17/02/2017 at 14:41

My Daughter has had two, built one painted it then moved so had to buy another and do it all again. Special timber paint can be bought from B&Q plus undercoat, daughter said it took two undercoats and three top coats, you can get any colour you need at the paint mix area. Do not do it in this weather wait for the warmer drier times and make sure the wood is perfectly dry. They put good Lino down on the floor for easy cleaning, lights and a small heater (electric) finished it off the children play in it winter and summer. Go on line to one of the suppliers of the cabins they usually have advice on painting. Hope this helps.


Additional Lighting

Posted: 17/02/2017 at 12:02

Lissa, I am with Busy Lizzie, starting too early does not produce the best plants, it also depends on where you live, the South of the Watford gap will be two weeks ahead of us in the NE, we start things in March and can still have frost into May. Light is also essential plants grow leggy with too much heat and not enough light, growing seedlings on a window ledge needs a reflector either tinfoil or white board behind and still turn the plants daily. The cost of buying and running special lighting to my mind would not pay just to gain probably a week, we sow late but still get the length of growing season anyway, is it worth it.


Farm Shops

Posted: 17/02/2017 at 10:52

Posy, think of the taste, a Tesco cabbage has been massed produced wrapped transported stored and then delivered to each shop. Everything grown starts to lose goodness from the second you lift or cut it, the Farm shop cabbage will have had a quick shower after being picked probably that morning, have a few holes in the leaves but the taste is beyond any Tesco produce. Fair enough the Super Market are cheaper easier and no holes in the leaves plus not everyone lives near a farm shop. Foxes are five minutes from us a market garden who had stalls in Stockton Market for many years. I use it because i am sick of looking at cabbage and lettuce with the stalks black with age and no taste. If you blanche and freeze the left over cabbage it will do another meal and still tastes better. Our local Butcher makes coleslaw and has different size pots you choose the same with Peasepudding. The Black pudding is local made not with dried blood. I think back to when my mother did all that with our own pigs, it was normal now Tesco's are normal, somethings are not for the better OK I am too old I will get my flat cap.


What is your weather like? (2)

Posted: 17/02/2017 at 10:33

Stockton has sunshine, all around, the steam is rising off the ground, there are blue skies on high and the clouds are scudding by, it makes me sing, you daft auld thing, it must be spring.

Apologies to the song "gimme sunshine" I get carried away or is that should be.


Greenhouse set up

Posted: 17/02/2017 at 10:20

Missclarech, Hello Clare and welcome. Ask as many questions as you wish you will always get an answer from the nice people on this board.

Over the years I have had a few Green Houses and found by trial and error the best way is path up the middle and a lining with pea gravel spread about six inches or more deep, Puncture the lining with a garden fork to allow some slow drainage though the idea is to hold some water to moisten the air. I did away with soil in the greenhouse because it had to be dug out and replaced at least every two years, some will disagree but my findings were it lost its goodness and the plants suffered.,

Orientation. Which way will it face, my main section is south facing, this can mean how much light heat sunshine you get and when, south facing is maximum light and sun. The north side has permanent staging with a sand bed I can heat for seeds, the underside allows me to store pots of plants I am bringing on before they go in the cold frame. The South side I grow tomato's peppers etc in pots, the roots go into the gravel and I keep the gravel wet. In Autumn I erect a staging for the winter to bring in plants in pots, grow some cut and come again greens and a few Alpines. Root Vegetables are seasonal and grow outside apart from some potato's grown in bags for Christmas so forget roots in the Greenhouse. Salad crops can be grown out of season but out side in summer, it gets way too hot for them in a GH. Over the years shelves have been erected high up to put pots on, there never seems to be enough room in even the largest GH. This is how I learned to work a green house over many years of trial and error but your needs may differ. feel free to ask more.

Snails and slugs will get everywhere even into your greenhouse, you have to be strong a tin with domestos and water, a torch and go pick them off and drop them in the tin. Keep the floor clear of old pots and things they can hide in during the day. In Autumn when I deep clean the green house spraying the gravel with a mild disinfectant kills any thing hiding. Hope this helps.



Posted: 16/02/2017 at 23:42

I grew up with Peony's massive shrubs of them 50 years old when i first knew them and I have a cutting from that bush rooted when i got it and knowing it would take five to seven years to flower. My Sarah B flowers well every year the Rubra's are a mass of flowers that need to be staked and cross stringed to stop the heavy heads drooping.

OK they should be in the ground in a sunny position though not early morning sun, mine get the sun around ten in the morning until the last rays at night. The top of the root should be in the ground early below the level of the surround and once in never cover the root ball with soil. I mulch a couple of times a year away from the root ball, spread the mulch thickly about a foot away in a circle. Normal rain is enough water though if we have a very dry spell I will give them a bucket of water in one go. I never cut them down until I see the first new growth, the dry old top growth after dead heading helps against frost. They can be moved and may not flower that year while they settle though will flower there after. Take as big a lump of rootball as you can carry or drag, prepare a hole with grit in the bottom plenty of compost mixed in the excavated soil then drop the root ball in the hole with the top of the root level with the soils around, do not cover the root or bury it, being buried is often why they stop flowering. Apart from the mulch they do not get fed though I may mix a handful of granular fertiliser in one mulch a year. The reason I say not early morning sun is because here in then NE we get late frosts and it is best for them to de-ice slowly, it is the sun kills the plants not the frost. That is what I found to my cost, we gardeners are learning all the time, usually by our mistakes.

They are wonderful fussy Ladies, treat them with respect and they live for ever, if they are happy they reward you with masses of flower, they need a little tough love to show who is boss.


Farm Shops

Posted: 16/02/2017 at 15:30

Clarington, tha needs be a re'et t'died int t'wool Tyke to like  Hendo's, Mother used it she was a Tyke, Dad preferred t'ther stuff t'same bottle, he was Tyneside, me born in Durham liked Brown Sauce. No accounting for taste is there.

Our local butcher sells all local produce even has his own farm and small registered slaughter house. In my youth, often ill spent, the killing was done on the premises and we youngsters watched no H&S to stop us but then we killed our own stock at home it was part of life as we knew it. They have just won more prizes for best shop best pies and sausage. You cannot get near the shop at lunch time as van loads of workers come from all over for food to eat sitting on the Green.

The local Farm shop take in local fresh produce from small holdings and farms around here, of course they have to import things customers want but the emphasis is on local. You can get a range of potato's with the soil on them just dug up, the only way to taste them, cabbage still has holes in the leaves and morning dew, far better than the perfect tasteless super market ones. You pay a bit more but eat fresh and it does not go to waste as you buy what you need not two for one then bin one. I have heard people complain about the price then buy the same stuff from the market stall, it must be cheaper off a stall? They should check first.


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