Sunday, 3 April 2011


Seedlings are springing up very happily, and this year, they have more space to spread out in, as I got this plastic greenhouse/shelving thingo to put outdoors:

At the moment it's mild enough that I've started leaving the flap open at night, though any risk of frost, and I'll be zipping it up overnight again. Seems to be working very well and, SO FAR, no snails have climbed up into it.
In the blue bucket in the foreground - some komatsuna which survived very well over winter, and which I'll be growing again next winter, under a cloche, just to be a bit kinder. It's a slightly spicy green, great for adding to a salad or sandwich; and not as hot as rocket. We had some heavy snow and some hard, long frosts, so it's pretty hardy stuff.

Beetroot 'Cylindra':

'Feltham First' Peas:

'Goldensweet Mangetout' Peas:

'Winter Marvel Lettuce:'

Calendula Officinalis:

Spinach 'Matador' (back left), 'Little Gem' Lettuce (right), Sweet Peas (left), Cima di Rapa/ Rapini (front):

Those black plastic trays are testament to how much Tesco Free Range Chicken we get through. I make holes in one tray, with a bradawl, and then place it inside an unpunctured one, which serves as the drip tray. Works a treat. Of course, they are thoroughly washed first...

You can also see my two labelling methods: plastic milk bottles cut into strips, marked with marker pen; and foil-lined drink cartons, likewise cut into strips, and marked with biro. The former type doesn't work too well out in the garden, as the marker pen soon fades (which is why I lost track of my tomato varieties last year). The latter type works more through the imprinting than the ink (see the Calendula label) so can't be washed off, but the labels lose their rigidity once damp, so you can't prang them straight into the soil.

One of my resolutions this year is MORE LABELLING; especially of collected seed. I'm trying to decide whether or not to plant some unidentified brassica (?) seed, or not. Might be Pak Choi. Might be something else. It's probably edible, however.

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