Thursday, 11 May 2017

Early May

It's the busiest time of the gardening year. I have pots and trays of seedlings and small plants both indoors and outside. I've hoed and dug more of the vegetable beds, and started clearing the paths around them, and planted more crops - broad beans the latest to go in (which I'd started in cardboard tubes back in March or early April).


There's so much more to do. It's not too late to sow many things - especially this far north, and spring here has been slow, with daytime temperatures only picking up into the mid teens since the start of this month. I recently got a book I've wanted since the last time I blogged here a lot - a book on heirloom tomatoes. This has rekindled my love of lycopersicon, so I ordered a few more varieties - it can't hurt, even if they don't eventually fruit. I have the advantage of a greenhouse and polytunnel here, although both need repairing, so I should be able to extend the season somewhat.

I bought a courgette plant from the botanic garden shop - a yellow-fruited variety. I will grow more from seed, but this tiny plant had even tinier embryonic flowers already sprouting. I repotted it on the first day, and in a week it has roughly doubled in size (I've put it out in the sun during the day, brought it in on the chilly nights). It should provide an early crop until the home-down ones get going. I've never grown a yellow variety - they are so pretty, I couldn't resist.

Elsewhere, I've been tackling an area towards the end of the garden near some trees. I've always envisaged a woodland garden there - bulbs and shade-loving perennials with a seating area. So far it's been the hard task of lifting encroaching turf, digging some organic matter into the hard, dry soil, planting (primulas, Trillium, Cardiocrinum, foxgloves), and mulching. It'll need some care, as it's naturally drier there than I'd like, but then it's been a dry spring so far.

Finally, I've been planning ahead in a less glamorous way, making liquid plant feeds from nettles and comfrey, and dock as it seems similar to comfrey in its growing habit. And for the even longer term, I lifted and divided some comfrey, and potted it up - I'll need lots more leaves in the coming months.

The veg plot a couple of days ago, above; and today, below. Progress!

No comments: