Sunday, April 30, 2006

A Platform For Water Butts

While I took our middle one to rugby training my Dad did a stunning job of laying a breeze block and slab platform along the end of our large shed. I will be putting large water butts on the platform which will be filled from the shed roof.

Planted: Mixed Salad Leaves

M. loves her salad leaves, so I bought a tray of mixed plants from the garden centre today. They went into the ground next to the cabbage plants.

Frame Building

The Build-A-Ball's arrived during the week, so today me and my dad made frame that covers the newly planted cabbabges down to the salad onions. This should keep the birds off the cabbages and onions, and our smallest child from walking over the veg plot with his spade looking for something to dig up.

Planted: Onions - Stuttgarter Giant

Finally got around to planting these sets. They went next to the red onions I planted earlier.

Sowing: Calabrese - Belstar

Again, using the plastic trays the cabbage plants came in we sowed calabrese seeds.

Sowing: Cabbage - (Savoy) Ormskirk (I)

Using the plastic trays that had the cabbage plants in we bought today we sowed seeds for a later crop.

Sowing: Carrots - Autumn King Improved

Sowed another row today, between two rows of the cabbages planted today.

Planted: Savoy Cabbage

Bought a tray of a dozen plants from the local garden centre.

Planted: Cabbage - Greyhound

Bought from the local garden centre as a tray of a dozen plants.

Saturday, April 29, 2006

Sowing: Pepper Chili - Jalapeno

I thought it would be fun to try growing some chili peppers. We don't have a greenhouse but our potting shed window has a very sunny aspect so they will probably live here. Aparently you can grow them outdoors so if I get a good enough germination then I will try some inside and some outside.

Thursday, April 27, 2006

Sprouting onions

Ten days after the red onions were planted they are starting to grow.

Sunday, April 23, 2006

Lettuce showing through...

No signs yesterday, but this morning a nice little row of seedlings.

Saturday, April 22, 2006

Mutant Daisy

While mowing the lawn today I found this mutant daisy.

The stem is elongated and not circular like normal daisies, it's like a two flowers fused together, a siamese twin flower. We picked the flower, it's now in a bud vase, and I carried on mowning the lawn.

More Signs Of Life...

A few things are starting to appear:
  • The first two spears of asparagus are showing through.
  • The early potatoes have pushed their first leaves through.
  • The leeks are germinating nicely.

Monday, April 17, 2006

Planted: Salad Onions

Bought a tray of salad onions at the garden centre today. No variety on the label.

Sowing: Lettuce - All Year Round

Just a single row sowed next to the salad onions

Sowing: Carrot - Autumn King

I sowed a single row today, between the lettuce row and onions.

Planted: Red Onions - Red Barron

Planted two rows of onion sets that I picked up at the local Oakington garden centre today.


Our magnolia is starting to come into full flower. This is a sure sign that we will have a heavy frost soon that turns the flowers brown. I thought I would take a quick photo to show how good the flowers look before the frost gets them.

Sunday, April 16, 2006

Rain Stopped Play

The morning was spent with the kids doing easter egg hunts, and unfortunately the rain came in the afternoon which put a stop to any work in the garden.

Saturday, April 15, 2006

Getting Close To Finishing The Digging

The 'top veg patch' was dug over today. It's a relatively easy dig as the area has been dug over regularly for the last few years and has had plenty of compost dug in over that time. I am not sure what I going to plant here yet. Certainly the runner beans will go on this patch, like they did last year, but as for the rest of the area I am still undecided.

Sowing: Dwarf Bean - Boston

The beans were planted indoors into fibre pots.

These were choosen because they are advertised as being ideal for freezing.

Sowing: Runner Bean - Red Rum

Planted indoors into fiber pots. The beans are ones that I had saved from last years crop and have spent the winter in a shoe box in the spare bedroom. It will be interesting to see what sort of germination rate I get.

Signs Of Life...

The parsnips that were sown almost a month ago are starting to show through :-)

Secondly, the three garlic cloves that I popped into the soil are starting to grow too. These were just planted in the faint hope that they would grow after being found at the back of our food cupboard, it's great to see that they are.

Wednesday, April 12, 2006


I ordered some Build-A-Ball's today. These are so that I can protect the veg from pests. The pests include birds pulling up my onion sets, cats using the freshly cultivated soil as a toilet, and the kids footballs from crushing plants.

Sunday, April 09, 2006

Front Garden Activity: Where's Your Pruning Saw?

You always have to start worrying when M. asks for the pruning saw...

Shortly after we moved into the house we planted a couple of Phormiums with a Hebe between them on the right hand side of the front garden. Last year we had to remove one of the Phormiums to allow access for the builders doing our extension out back. This exposed the Hebe and it has looked very straggly since then. The Phormiums have done very well over the years drawfing the Hebe so today the Hebe was chopped right back, but the rain came before I could finish the job by digging out the roots.

As a side note, the builders had unceremoniously pulled it out the Phormium with their digger and left it on the grassy part of the front garden. We thought it would be shame just to loose it so I dragged it to the back garden, found a bare patch and popped it in the ground with generous handfulls of Blood Fish & Bone. We gave it a chance, and it would seem that it has paid off because it seem to be be surviving.

Sowing: Leeks - Autumn Giant

I got around to sowing my leeks today. The variety is Autumn Giant which according to Thompson & Morgan will last, in the ground, until may next year.

Saturday, April 08, 2006

Yet More Tidying

Before the grass cutting could start I completely emptied the compost heap of last years compost. I little went straight into the ground because I dug a couple more rows of the veg patch. The rest went into v.large buckets for later use. I had saved some of the not quite ready compost off to one side so while I was cutting the grass I started to refill the compost heap with a mixture of grass cuttings and compost.

I also finally got around to properly stacking the logs that my dad has been bringing down us when they visit, and also chopped up the two apple tree branches that have been getting in the way for too long now.

Maybe tomorrow I may get around to planting something.

Compost Bin

I repositioned our small compost bin next to the green shed and laid a couple of slabs in front of it to make a path up to it.

It used to be closer to the house, but since the extension it has been out of use with no suitable place to put it near the house. The new kitchen bin has a seperate composting bin so we don't have to visit this compost bin as often so it can now be further up the garden.

The First Cut Of The Year

It is that time of year again when I need to dust down the lawn mower and start the weekly ritual of pushing it around the back garden to keep the grass at a reasonable length. Before I started I had to change the oil and air filter of the mower. Thankfully my mower has a Briggs And Stratton engine for which you can find all the details you need to service it on their web site.

Sunday, April 02, 2006

...and A Little Bit More Digging

A little bit more digging and a couple more slabs laid. The heavy showers got in the way. I did some looking around on the web for water butts.

Saturday, April 01, 2006

Only a little bit of digging.

Last weekends weather meant that nothing happened in the garden. But after a brief heavy shower in the morning I was able to get into the garden and do a little digging. I am still not a hundred percent and only managed a few rows. I stripped a few more turfs of grass which we are using to make a wall at the front of the compost heap. (The other three sides are brick.) These should compost themselves other the next year.

I also laid some slabs at the back of my new vegetable patch. These are to allow me access and move the patch away from the rain shadow of my neighbours hedge.