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What have you done in the greenhouse/polytunnel today?

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default Re: What have you done in the greenhouse/polytunnel today?

Post by Compostwoman on 17th March 2011, 8:53 pm

Pricked out many, many tomato plants - they are about 6 inches high and I have now got 6 plants of each variety in a cell and another 4 in individual pots.

I have grown;

Pink Cherry, Red Cherry, Aunty Madge, Gardeners Delight (Cherry)

Costoluto Fiorentino, Costoluto Genovese, Big Boy, Beefsteak, Black Russian, Atkins stuffing, Carlton (Beef)

Shirley, Moneymaker, Latah, Roma, Golden Sunrise, Yellow Perfection,

plus a few others I can't remember now...

I have about 170 plants all growing well, some in the cold frame in side the polytunnel ( those are mine!) and some in the porch conservatory ( which I will sell or give away.)

Have similar quantities of peppers, have grown Californian Wonder, Nardullo, Marconi Rosso, Romano and Hot Cayenne chilli.


Last edited by Compostwoman on 19th March 2011, 8:11 pm; edited 1 time in total

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Post by Lottie on 19th March 2011, 4:37 pm

I welcomed me teeny weeny celery plants... they're sooo sweet! Laughing

All germineting nicely, thank gawd, and my morning glory has gone mental... Shocked

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Post by polgara on 19th March 2011, 5:47 pm

Did some more transplanting with tubes into pots.

More things into tubes.

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Post by Compostwoman on 19th March 2011, 8:18 pm

Planted up a couple of pots with broad bean plants for an earlier crop. Also planted nasturtiums in the pots, as a blackfly deterrent.


Sowed Nasturtium, Poached egg, sunflower, assorted herbs and salad seeds into pots, trays etc.

Repotted the overwintering herb collections - I have parseley, sage, rosemary and thyme in one big pot , sweet marjoram, origano, lemon thyme and garlic chives in another and regrowth has started, so I tidied them up and gave a top dressing of worm compost.

Potted on some more tomato seedlings into bigger pots, sowed some spinach and chard seeds for later transplanting.

A good day

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Post by polgara on 22nd March 2011, 6:36 pm

Planted some flower seeds & another tin of spring onions & a tin of radish as well. Earthed up 2 pots of potatoes as well.

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Post by Chilli-head on 30th March 2011, 12:53 pm

Had a good day off work yesterday. Potted on tomatoes and peppers. The tomatoes are growing well this year - they already look quite big for their new pots !

Spotted some more Rocoto chillies emerging - I was starting to get worried, they've taken about 3 weeks to germinate.
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Post by Penny on 31st March 2011, 1:10 am

I can't really call our kitchen window (I think these big ones are called "picture windows"?) a greenhouse but we've had this tomato plant growing in the same pot as a jade plant. Seed must have been in the dirt I repotted the thing with. It grew all winter so I replanted into a planter box a month or so ago when it began to have flowers.

Now it has one ripe tomato and one ripening. I'm so astonished. I never thought it was possible!

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Post by Lottie on 31st March 2011, 7:00 am

Wow, Pen, that's amazing. I thought it'd struggle with the length of days, and amount of light! Very Happy

And of all people, I'd have thought you most certainly do have a green house... Wink

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Post by Chilli-head on 5th April 2011, 1:48 pm

Skived off work eartly yesterday, and got the tomatoes planted out into their final positions ! It took less than a week from potting on from 3" to 5" pots to get roots out the bottom. They look great this year, I hope they are happy with their compost - they are all in homemade stuff this year (6:1:1 garden compost:perlite:vermiculite, with a handful of seaweed meal for good measure).

The greenhouse is already looking crowded this year - the conservatory window ledge may have to be requisitioned too Exclamation
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Post by Compostwoman on 5th April 2011, 5:53 pm

Chilli-head wrote:Skived off work eartly yesterday, and got the tomatoes planted out into their final positions ! It took less than a week from potting on from 3" to 5" pots to get roots out the bottom. They look great this year, I hope they are happy with their compost - they are all in homemade stuff this year (6:1:1 garden compost:perlite:vermiculite, with a handful of seaweed meal for good measure).

The greenhouse is already looking crowded this year - the conservatory window ledge may have to be requisitioned too Exclamation


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Post by Dandelion on 5th April 2011, 8:42 pm

Are the perlite and vermiculite for drainage?

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Post by Compostwoman on 5th April 2011, 8:45 pm

Dandelion wrote:Are the perlite and vermiculite for drainage?

I would suspect yes, but we will have to wait until C-H returns.

My home made compost is pretty free draining already, so maybe not?

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Post by Chilli-head on 6th April 2011, 10:21 am

Perlite and vermiculite are good for lightening up the mix; they hold air, water and nutrients. Stops the compost slumping when wet, and lets you get away with less frequent watering.

If you want the full spin, here are Sinclair's fact sheets for vermiculite and perlite.

I'm fairly convinced they help, although I know (hushed whisper) they aren't very eco Embarassed
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Post by polgara on 6th April 2011, 10:35 am

Planted more seeds in the greenhouse to start off.

Still trying to get the sweetpeas to start.

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Post by Lottie on 9th April 2011, 12:15 pm

I've potted on some toms and chillis, I'm gonna leave me celery to get a wee bit bigger, bless 'em. I also spent far to long watching some teeny tiny baby spiders all gather together then run apart then gather together when blown on... Embarassed Laughing they're hanging about (literally) on the watering can, so I shall have to use the other one, I'm too soft, hoenstly.. Rolling Eyes

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Post by Chilli-head on 3rd February 2012, 10:57 am

Seems like time to start preparing for the new season; I'm not planning to start sowing until later in the month - still a bit cold to do much out there - but I've scrubbed out everything in preparation.

Really hoping not to have my greenhouse cucumbers ruined by red spider mite this year, so I set off one of those sulpur candles at the weekend. I've never done this before, but Whoo .. what fun. The entire greenhouse turned white, with smoke curling out of every crack. After about an hour I was even starting to cough standing a good few yards away from it - I can't see many pests overwintering in there this year. I do have this nagging doubt that, although I bought the candle from an organic gardening supplier, this can't have terribly good eco credentials though Question
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Post by Chilli-head on 7th March 2012, 5:20 pm

Well, my tomatoes are up ! Already almost twice as many as I will be able to fit in the greenhouse.

Good results this year from using a seed compost made from leafmold, grit sand and perlite.

First chilli seedling appeared this morning too Very Happy Very Happy
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Post by freebird on 7th March 2012, 5:46 pm

Ha! Beat you by 12 days for the tomato and 6 days for the chilli. Mind, my tomato seed was old, and only one germinated, so I had to sow some more a few days ago. Another 3 plants have just shown themselves, which is plenty for my little greenhouse. Peppers have put in appearance too.

While we are on the subject of chillies, Mr CH, can you recommend a variety of chilli that is moderately hot and doesn't have a skin like old parchment? I have used my homegrown chillies in a fish dish and spat out bits of chilli skin thinking they were fish bones. Ideally I would like to grow non-F1 as I try to save my own seed. I am currently growing De Cayenne.
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Post by Chilli-head on 8th March 2012, 3:50 pm

Freebird - do you mean that you used the chillies fresh and found the skin to be like old parchment, or are we talking about dried chilles ? And how hot is "moderately" ??

Many of the hotter Capsicum Annuum chillies (like Cayenne, Bird's eye ...) are quite thin skinned, and so dry well. But the skin can start to dry on ones you meant to use fresh but left too long on the plant ...

I have mentioned a few times that I like Capsicum Pubescens Rocoto, which a less common variety (unless you are downstream of me in a seed swap Very Happy ), which makes chillies up to golf ball sized with about 3mm thick juicy flesh. They are on the hotter side of moderate. The various shades of Jalapeno are thicker skinned than Cayenne and are more moderate. The Classic Mexican chillies (Ancho, Mulato, Pasilla) have a gentle warmth, and are fairly fleshy.

This year I've thrown caution to the wind and sown Capsicum Chinense varieties - Datil and Red scotch bonnet. I love the flavour of the Chinense varieties; the fruitiness is really nice, and is worth bearing the searing heat for !

For all info chilli related, ->this<- is the best site I've found. He's another chile-head - no relation !
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Post by freebird on 11th March 2012, 3:18 pm

Yes indeed, I did use them fresh. It never occurred to me that the skins would toughen through the fruits being left on the plant. Thank you for that - I will bear it in mind once the plants start producing this year.

It's funny you should mention dried chillies, as my chilli surplus was the reason I found this forum in the first place. I had been looking online for ideas for preserving them. I ended up drying some, though in the oven which wasn't ideal. Have since bought a dehydrator which I think is going to be useful, since the man has been diagnosed as diabetic. It kinda rules out bottling fruit in syrup, so will try dehydrating my surplus.

I really haven't the faintest idea how to describe the heat of a chilli. I don't care for anything too hot, but my idea of too hot may not be someone elses. Just have to suck it and see, if you'll pardon the pun. Thank you anyway for the information, and the link.
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Post by polgara on 11th March 2012, 3:42 pm

Planted some tomatoes & lettuce today.
Broad beans begining to show but still waiting for peas & sweet peas.

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Post by Chilli-head on 19th March 2012, 12:33 pm

Freebird - for preserving Chillies, to date I have mostly dried them. Thinner skilled fruits can just be strung up; over a stove or radiator will be enough for things like Bird's eye. For the Mexican types that are more fleshy, the oven or a dehydrator might be an idea. Really fleshy ones like Rocoto I just dice and freeze - then you can just use from frozen as required.

Around the web there are various instructions for smoking chillies; I'm growing early Jalapenos, which when smoked become Chipotles. I plan to smoke them in a kettle barbequeue - takes about 5 hours, finishing off the drying if needed in the oven. As a hobby woodworker I have no shortage of oak chips !

Anyway, this weekend I potted on some of my tomato seedlings; as ever I have far too many. Also sown leeks in modules, and more baby leaf salads - I reuse the black plastic trays that supermarket tomatoes and mushrooms come in for this.
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Post by Dandelion on 19th March 2012, 8:54 pm

Chilli-head wrote:
Anyway, this weekend I potted on some of my tomato seedlings; as ever I have far too many. Also sown leeks in modules, and more baby leaf salads - I reuse the black plastic trays that supermarket tomatoes and mushrooms come in for this.

Do you grow the baby leaves on soil or wet paper? And do you pick them as micro leaves or grow them a bit bigger? I keep thinking I'll have another go but haven't got round to it (I got a bit put off by some beetroot 'micro leaves' which went rotten before they were big enough to eat last winter!)

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Post by Chilli-head on 21st March 2012, 9:44 am

I use compost, and tend to grow them larger and eat them as baby leaves rather than the rather trendy chefy "micro herbs" ! I tend to grow lettuce rocket and beetroot; this year I've thrown in some sorrel which was a free packet with my seed order.


This morning I see that I've finally succeeded in forcing my Scotch bonnet chillies to germinate by cranking the propagator to 27C. To allow me to do this I use a small electrically heated propagator just for germination, then move things on to a larger, but cooler propagator. Now, these small electric propagators have two problems; one is that they are usually not really powerful enough to stay at 27C in an otherwise unheated greenhouse, the other is that when the sun gets on them, the temperature quickly rockets to as much as 50C. To solve this, I cover the lid first with a sheet of bubble wrap to keep the heat in, then a layer of fleece as extra insulation AND shading. As they get moved on once the seed have germinated, the light blocked by all this doesn't matter too much.
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Post by polgara on 22nd March 2012, 6:49 pm

Planted some cuecumbers & gerkins to day.
Still waiting for toms & peppers to come through, also peas & sweet peas.

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So take care of yourself, be Happy, Love Deeply and enjoy life!


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Post by Sparhawk on 24th March 2012, 9:49 am

Put shading on the roof (net curtain) the temp inside was getting a bit silly (47 deg c peak) its March for heavens sake, dont normally do that 'til May Rolling Eyes

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