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What have you done in the garden today?

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default Re: What have you done in the garden today?

Post by Ploshkin on 18th October 2014, 9:22 am

I put some wallflowers & bulbs in pots between heavy showers yesterday. I struggled to find wallflowers - garden centres are becoming a rarity here now, the remaining nursery about 10 miles away has just closed down. I did, however, discover a tiny little garden place tucked away next to the A40 near Llandeilo (that's 20 miles away) & what an oasis it is. The lady there is absolutely lovely & the plants were excellent quality & I couldn't believe just how much is packed in to a small but slightly rambling space. I will definitely be visiting again.

Ooh, I also have 4 stakes in the ground to mark the position of my much wanted polytunnel - a small step but a bit closer. I did have a man with a digger here last week but he got a puncture & when he brought the wheel back he had to take the digger away to bury a horse.

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Post by Dandelion on 18th October 2014, 4:17 pm

Classic last paragraph Ploshkin - you should write a book!

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The richer we have become materially, the poorer we have become morally and spiritually. We have learned to fly in the air like birds and swim in the sea like fish, but we have not learned the simple art of living together as brothers and sisters.

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Post by Chilli-head on 18th October 2014, 8:19 pm

I spent much of today at the lotty. I cleared a bed that had had potatoes in it for garlic and about 100 onions to overwinter. Now the unusual weed in this bed was strawberries, runners from the next door plot. I needed to plant up a new strawberry bed, and why buy them when you can freeload off your neighbour ? So I cleared out the bed that had had drying beans in it, and moved the healthiest of the strawbs over there.

Lots of weeding to do too. The composr heap looks healthy now.
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Post by freebird on 22nd October 2014, 4:34 pm

Only had an hour and a half in the garden, but I've shredded all the asparagus stems I've cut down for the winter.

The man has been doing a lot of log splitting over the last two weekends, mostly of the willow that has been seasoning for two years. The bark is just falling away - huge lumps of it. So while I had the shredder out today, I put quite a lot of the bark through it. I've now got half a sackful of shredded bark for mulching, and plenty more to come.
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Post by freebird on 27th October 2014, 11:08 am

Spent a few hours over the last three days sieving out my compost bay. Each of the three bays is a cubic yard and rots down to about a third of that. Seven sacks full of beautiful compost. Next job is to turn the new waste into the bay I've just emptied.

It's sunny and lovely here today. Enjoying the garden time while I can - fairly busy work week, starting with a job the afternoon. Time to get on.
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Post by Chilli-head on 15th November 2014, 4:50 pm

Sowed broad beans. I'm growing superaquadulce in the garden plot for overwintering, but I'll sow a spring variety too at the lotty.

I've ordered some apple an pears, all very local varieties, with the intention of making a 2 tier espalier "hedge" along the edge of my plot. They won't arrive till the new year, but I'll need to prepare the ground and some support.
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Post by Dandelion on 16th November 2014, 3:41 pm

Broad beans (The Sutton) are just starting to come up in pots in the cold frame - the season is starting all over again before it's even ended!!!

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The richer we have become materially, the poorer we have become morally and spiritually. We have learned to fly in the air like birds and swim in the sea like fish, but we have not learned the simple art of living together as brothers and sisters.

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Post by Chilli-head on 7th December 2014, 7:30 pm

I got outside early-ish today to tidy up. Emptied the greenhouse at last - it is a rare year when the last picking of tomatoes comes in December !

All on the compost heap now with wood shavings, kitchen waste, woodburner ash and aquarium water.

On the subject of aquarium water; I've been using it for its nitrates in the garden for a while, but last easter when we visited Disneyland we went on their "Living with the land" ride, which bored C-H Jnr but quite interested me. Particularly interesting was their aquaponics, a kind of combination of aquaculture and hydroponics using the waste from tge fish for nitrogen. No such thing as a new idea, huh ?
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Post by Chilli-head on 18th December 2014, 8:25 am

Took delivery of a great pile of manure. It is a strange time of year for it, but I presume the local farmer needed a bit of cash for Christmas ! Still, at £30 for a trailer load it is pretty good value. I wonder how many tonnes of the stuff I will have used before my sticky Bedfordshire clay is lightened up to a nice tilth.

This lot I want to prepare the ground where my new fruit trees will be goiing in February.
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Post by Ploshkin on 19th December 2014, 10:02 am

Been there, done that CH - it does get better in the end and I was lucky to have a ready supply of sheep, cow & pig to choose from.  My clay had the added bonus of massive river boulders just under the surface.  We do have some amazing blue clay but fortunately it's not where I want to grow stuff - I think that would be impossible.  It was used for high quality industrial bricks and the site of the local brickworks is just down the road - it was producing into the sixties.  Our farm was also surveyed (long before we were here) as a potential provider of blue clay for the Llyn Brianne dam which is an earth core dam, but the road network was unsuitable for transporting the clay to the site.
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Post by Chilli-head on 19th December 2014, 10:24 am

Ever considered getting a potter's wheel Ploshkin ?? Very Happy I'm sure I could make pots with what I can find if I dig down a foot or two !

Semi-seriously though, I have always wanted to have a go at a potter's wheel. We had one in the art room at school, it sat in the corner, used only by the teacher, while we had to struggle making coil pots. Still feel a twinge of bitterness at not being allowed to have a go Evil or Very Mad
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Post by Dandelion on 20th December 2014, 5:01 pm

It's what I studied at art college, but I tended to go more for hand-built sculptural work. I have wondered recently whether throwing on the wheel is like riding a bike, and you never forget how to do it. Would be intrigued to have a go. (Quite honestly, I can understand a teacher preferring coiling to throwing in the art room. Less scope for - er - things to go wrong!!)

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The richer we have become materially, the poorer we have become morally and spiritually. We have learned to fly in the air like birds and swim in the sea like fish, but we have not learned the simple art of living together as brothers and sisters.

-Martin Luther King, Jr.
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Post by Dandelion on 20th December 2014, 5:06 pm

Anyway...what I have done in the garden today...
Having had our decrepit fence replaced in the autumn, we ordered some fittings to fix up some plant support mesh to train the tayberries up. I think these gizmos are called 'post-fix' - they are a very neat solution to fixing things to a concrete post fence, and clamp on to the post with the turn of a nut and bolt. You can get an extra bit to hang a basket from, but we just got the four basic fittings to tie the mesh to.

................................................................................................................................
The richer we have become materially, the poorer we have become morally and spiritually. We have learned to fly in the air like birds and swim in the sea like fish, but we have not learned the simple art of living together as brothers and sisters.

-Martin Luther King, Jr.
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Post by Ploshkin on 20th December 2014, 6:36 pm

I've done quite a bit of pot throwing over the years. I was lucky to go to a school with a good pottery room with 3 electric wheels. I threw some more at evening classes and then I taught in a primary school with an excellent pottery room including 2 wheels. The local secondary school used to send stuff over for me to fire because they didn't have a kiln. When I was a child we used to make pots with clay from the garden and dry them in the sun.
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Post by freebird on 20th December 2014, 6:46 pm

Never took to pottery myself, although did do it at school, including thrown pots. I've never liked 'goo' on my hands - don't like making bread for the same reason. Glad finger-painting wasn't fashionable when I was little. I would have hated it.
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Post by Chilli-head on 21st December 2014, 9:21 am

Oh well. As Dandelion has already hinted,  I've sent us wandering  Embarassed

Back to growing.   As I mentioned in the library,  I have been reading John Seymour's The self sufficient gardener .  Which has given me a solution to my grape training question.  To cover a wall, he suggests that training one vine over it will lead to fruit just at the top.  His answer is to train two vines, one from each side, at two different levels, so as to get fruit on both.   Now I already have a vine at each end of the wall,  and was wondering if  there was really enough space for both - so a perfect solution. I'll be out with my secateurs when I get a moment !
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Post by Dandelion on 21st December 2014, 4:15 pm

We had a small vine at our last house, which had been planted by the previous tenant to grow up a wrought iron support which held the porch up. The grapes were quite bitter, and we never really did anything with it (some friends made wine when we had a good year, but it was curiously sweet and very alcoholic, a bit like port.) The one thing about it was that for some reason visiting Jehovahs Witnesses always used to comment on it as I opened the door - on one occasion I replied with 'You're Jehovahs Witnesses, aren't you?', and they couldn't work out how I knew!!
After that very limited experience, I've felt that for me, a vine is quite a lot of work for no real return, but I would be happy to be persuaded otherwise! What kind of grapes are they, Chilli, and can you eat them or are they just for wine?

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The richer we have become materially, the poorer we have become morally and spiritually. We have learned to fly in the air like birds and swim in the sea like fish, but we have not learned the simple art of living together as brothers and sisters.

-Martin Luther King, Jr.
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Post by Chilli-head on 21st December 2014, 7:55 pm

The vines I have planted are Seyval Blanc and Scheurebe , both white winemaking varieties. I wanted to have a go at winemaking, but also they can provide vine leaves for Greek dolmades.

I have a problem though, that a vine normally yields about a bottle of wine, so I really need another 4 vines to make a gallon. Might see if I can find space at the allotment for more.
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Post by Dandelion on 22nd December 2014, 7:59 pm

Is it possible in our climate to grow really sweet eating grapes, or do you need a glasshouse to be really successful?

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The richer we have become materially, the poorer we have become morally and spiritually. We have learned to fly in the air like birds and swim in the sea like fish, but we have not learned the simple art of living together as brothers and sisters.

-Martin Luther King, Jr.
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Post by gunners71uk on 12th January 2015, 10:56 am

to wet windy at allotment so i have sown to half trays of red onion kamal f1 i find the half trays easier to handle and more easy when transplantin and i think like when growing brassicas twent or so in there then potted on a couple times Smile

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Post by Chilli-head on 12th January 2015, 11:19 am

You're off to an early start ! I still need to tidy out and clean my greenhouse to let some more light in before sowing. Usually it's tomatoes, chillies and leeks in February that are the first in.

I quite like growing onions in 2" modules by sowing a pinch of seed in each module, then planting them out so that they grow as a clump. It works well for Long Red Florence, which push each other apart nicely with their torpedo shaped bulbs. Is that what you are doing ?
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Post by gunners71uk on 12th January 2015, 2:41 pm

no i just do them in seed trays and thin out and let grow and transplant into final position

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Post by Dandelion on 12th January 2015, 9:53 pm

Although it's mild at the moment, it's just too windy to spend a long time outside. I have mulched the rhubarb, though, and pruned the apples yesterday, so I feel that I have done something!!

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The richer we have become materially, the poorer we have become morally and spiritually. We have learned to fly in the air like birds and swim in the sea like fish, but we have not learned the simple art of living together as brothers and sisters.

-Martin Luther King, Jr.
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Post by gunners71uk on 13th January 2015, 12:04 pm

mrs g gone and put in some rasp canes which the kind chili head sent to us then she pick a few sprouts then i think we off costa and chance to look at wilkos gardening section Smile

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Post by Dandelion on 13th January 2015, 3:53 pm

Now you're talking, Gunners - Costa, Wilko, and the garden - three of my favourite places!!

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The richer we have become materially, the poorer we have become morally and spiritually. We have learned to fly in the air like birds and swim in the sea like fish, but we have not learned the simple art of living together as brothers and sisters.

-Martin Luther King, Jr.
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Post by gunners71uk on 14th January 2015, 8:08 am

Dandelion wrote:Now you're talking, Gunners - Costa, Wilko, and the garden - three of my favourite places!!
we love the simple life or is it the good life lol x

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