Shrinking Violet

Latest posts by Shrinking Violet

Too late to plant Tulip/Daff bulbs?

Posted: 06/01/2013 at 16:40

Lead Farmer - let us all know how things turn out!  It's always interesting to learn from others' experiences.

For the record, my "saved" bulbs and corms have been planted into tubs in December.  There's a lot of healthy growth, and I am ever hopeful! 

I love the new shoots - they really are so promising.  Locally (in Minehead, Somerset) there are early-flowering daffs already in full bloom.  Now that's enough to brighten any dreary January day!!!


Too late to plant Tulip/Daff bulbs?

Posted: 06/01/2013 at 16:20

Hi kins557:  best advice forall new owners of gardens is to make haste slowly!  You should wait to see what the roses are like - they may be "tired loooking" right now - but a bit of a good prune and a feed and you may be pleasantly surprised next summer.  If you do decide to replace them - don't plant new roses where old ones were situated - you need to find a competely new space for them.

Give it time for the new compost to come good, and any enrichment of the soil is bound to do it good. 


Too late to plant Tulip/Daff bulbs?

Posted: 06/01/2013 at 15:07

I have found bulbs that have been overlooked in the past.  Plant them - now!  They will flower, albeit a bit later than it says on the packet.  But they should perform for the spring season - but will wither if you keep them unplanted.

Best advice after flowering is to dead-head them and then to give them a good foliar feed and allow the foliage to die down naturally.  Then lift and dry the bulbs (if you can't leave them where they are) and remember to plant them at a more appropriate time in the autumn!

Oh, and if you lift them and store for next season - it's quite a good idea to remove dried foliage and pop the bulbs into old tights/stockings and hang them up somewhere cool - the air can circulate, and they're out of the way in a cool garage, for example.  And don't forget to label them.  (If you can't remember the name, then label them as "pink/med. height/April" for example).  You may think you'll remember what they were.  But then, you may have a better memory than I have . . . . .



What's the weather like in your area?

Posted: 24/12/2012 at 22:07

Hello - long time since I was last able to post.  But Happy Christmas one and all, from the soggy South West.  OK here, but some of the floods are perilously close, so we'll batten down the hatches and hope it dries up a bit.  And there we all were a few weeks ago anticipating a white Christmas!

Free Entry To Kew Gardens

Posted: 12/12/2012 at 22:28

The first time I visited Kew it cost me .........2p.  (It had been 1d, but post decimalisation rendered the entry fee 2p).  I believe it was a Victorian hangover - more to do with making gardens available to the masses etc.  It usually costs a bit more these days, I believe.

Brussels sprouts

Posted: 12/12/2012 at 22:25

For the first time (in over 30 years) I have to admit to total failure of my Brussels.  Usually it is a bit of a tradition to pick sprouts for lunch on Christmas morning.  This year, the plants are a joke.  There has been virtually no growth since the plants were set in the ground, and I have given up hoping for any reasonable growth - ditto winter cabbages.

I guess it's down to the freak weather we have had, and, in particular, the low light levels. (My poinsettias in GH which would normally have turned red by now, given the absence of artificial light but with some bottom heat, are stubbornly green). 

Oh well - there's always next year .  .  . 



Unheated/uninsulated greenhouse

Posted: 06/12/2012 at 22:59

Artjak - a GH is no different from your own house - you don't ventilate it regularly at your peril!  It's amazing how many people won't open a window in their house because they are "keeping the heat in" - and forget they are also keeping the build-up of moisture in as well - hence the likelihood of mould growth.  Likewise in a GH - even when it is cold, it does need ventilating, even if it's only for a brief spell, to get a change of air inside.

Unheated/uninsulated greenhouse

Posted: 06/12/2012 at 22:50

Re attaching bubblewrap in a GH:  you can get special clips from the garden centre that will hold the wrap to the frame by clipping into the channels in the aluminium glazing bars.  Hard to explain - but you press the clip (a sort of button thing) through the wrap into the glazing channel.  If you have a wooden GH then I guess you would use tacks of some description.

I re-use the bubblewrap each year, and the clips I've had for years.

Unheated/uninsulated greenhouse

Posted: 06/12/2012 at 17:30

Oh, Tinker Christmas Bell - it wasn't just my mum then!  And did you hate having the seam in the middle, digging in when you were trying to get to sleep?  And silently curse mother's thrift????  Oh, how times change - I guess there are many people of a younger age who wouldn't know what on earth we were discussing!

Anyway - good luck with the extra insulation.  I think you'll find that the fleece works a treat.  In the long term, bubble wrap is worth it imo, although it's a bit of a drag fitting it each autumn!

Unheated/uninsulated greenhouse

Posted: 06/12/2012 at 17:17

If it's particularly cold, then a roll of fleece is a cheap and good investment.  Just throw it loosely over the plants overnight, and that is usually sufficient to give the extra bit of protection.  (If you don't have fleece, then think laterally - I have used long-past-their-best sheets that are thin - mother would have had a fit to see me use them, much given as she was to the thrift of "sides to middle" repairs, but that's another story!).

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