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Monday, 27 December 2010

The Shallots Are In and Vento Sown

I Hope everyone had a lovely Christmas and wish you a happy and prosperous new year.

My thoughts have now turned to next year, I have read many different peoples Ideas on when to plant Shallots and decided to plant mine in pots of John Innes no 2  in the Tunnel yesterday, there are 61 in total as previously mentioned from 4 different sources.The tunnel has some background heat to guard against frost. The 6 plants at the back right in the photo are Elephant Garlic pips that I have successfully managed to root. I also sowed 40 Vento Onions these are a week earlier than last year which will give them another week to ripen hopefully. when these are through I will not be giving them any artificial light as last year they reached the required size in plenty of time for the shows without any.  

Thursday, 23 December 2010

Shallots Large Onions

I have obtained Hative De Niort Shallots from several sources as I needed to build up my stock. The best ones were from Smithy veg  the next best were from Dobies followed by Plants of Distinction and last of all from M Brereton who advertises in the Garden News these were the smallest but good sound bulbs it will be interesting to see if the size of the original bulb determines the size of the new bulbs. (pictured as mentioned left to right)

The large Onions are now in large square pots and are doing well they are still getting 12 hours of daylight the photo shows them in a double seed tray sized gravel tray this enables them to be watered from the bottom.

Thursday, 9 December 2010

Ive seen the Light

After speaking to Dave Metcalf on the phone, as I forgot to ask how much light the Leeks needed. I was informed that they only require 12 hours .So as they are in the same place as the Onions I asked him if it was OK to cut down on the light the Onions are receiving he said it was, so everything is now receiving 12 hours of artificial light and ticking along nicely

Wednesday, 8 December 2010


Traveled across the Pennines today to collect my Pendle Improved Leeks from Dave Metcalfe. What lovely specimens they are, and what a nice chap Dave is.I learned loads he was very forthcoming with info which I wrote down hastily I now need to make sense of my notes so I can feed out the info.I took a couple of photos below and also one of mine now tucked up in the growing chamber. a photo is also below.

Monday, 6 December 2010


I had a Brain storm today and decided that although the collection of Pendle improved Leeks was imminent I would sow some leek seeds as a banker. I sowed some Robinson's Giant Leeks in Rootainers they are now awaiting germination. It will be good to see which does best at the shows. I was quite successfull with the Robinsons last year considering I was learning as I went along. I am also a month earlier than last year with the sowing. I also sowed some seeds that I saved from my Runner beans and Poppy the pumpkin to check germination, these have now popped through making my first attempt at saving seeds a success. 

Friday, 3 December 2010

My Final 15

I have now selected my final 15 Onions for size, and potted them on in a mix of John Innes no2 combined with a hand full of Vermiculite a sprinkling of Nutrimate and another sprinkling of powdered Vitax.The root system is very strong and they are growing well,there is a small amount of yellowing to the tips of the leaves I have researched this and it could be down to lack of fertilizer. I have also lifted the lights slightly to accommodate them they are still on 24 hours of light.I am hoping to get one over 10lb so we will see what happens.

The first sowing of the Quality Onions are not far behind, and the second sowing are now through and will be potted on this weekend.