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Thursday, 24 November 2011

Pricking out and potting on general tidying

The Giant onions were ready for pricking out today as most were a the crook stage this is the ideal time to do this so I potted all the ones that have germinated in to larger pots.Out of the 48 sown I managed 40 which is not bad at all I will have to get some money back off Peter Glazebrook for the ones that did not come through next time I see him (only kidding Peter)

I also potted on some of the Leek plants which I have grown from grass,the plants look good nice root system and lovely and straight,time will tell if they go to seed in the first year like their parent plant.

photos show all 3 lots of leek grass roughly 3 weeks apart in initial planting

I have now also sown my quality onions after having a chat with  Dan I decided to use Mr Fothergills Kelsae seeds. He grows his onions from plants that come from the same source and has excellent results, the seeds came a couple of weeks ago and were actually Johnsons which I believe is the same company. I have sown 84 seeds in modules and will keep selecting the strongest till I am left with about 40 plants to grow on

The new carrot bed is now finished and filled with sand and I also spent half a day cleaning all my water butts and sterilising them with Armillatox which apparently stinks awful when you come back in to the house with some on your clothes.
We also found a new use for the wheelbarrow
The overwinter onions and spring cabbage in the large tunnel are both doing well 

Saturday, 12 November 2011


In the last 2 days my Peter Glazebrook giant onions have started to emerge from the compost ,at the moment I have about 50% germination but expect that more will emerge in the next few days.It will be a case of keeping them warm and giving artificial light over the next few months, this year I have re arranged the growing room and also purchased a Timeguard ET05 is a plug-in electronic temperature controller and am hoping this will enable me to get a more even temperature throughout the coming months

Friday, 4 November 2011

Get your Orders In Early To avoid Disappointment

Today I ordered my seed Potatoes from JBA. I like to get the order out of the way early to ensure I get what I want and also to spread the cost of everything needed for the growing season. The varieties I have chosen are the ones that performed best for me this year I have opted for 3 coloured and 3 White and will only be growing 10 bags of each variety they are
Blue Belle
and Maxine
I also bought 3 ton of sand for my drums and beds at a bargain price of £90 delivered
and 1000 Pablo Beetroot seeds for £2.54 delivered which I think is also a bargain

The Beetroot bed that I created yesterday in the large tunnel has been planted with spring cabbage which will be ready well before I need to sow any Beetroot.

Thursday, 3 November 2011

More on Leeks and Leek Grass

The other day I gave Dave Metcalfe a ring to reserve next years Pendle Improved Leek plants for collection mid December the same as last year.I also asked him about his thoughts on whether the ones that went to seed this year would produce plants that would not go to seed in the first year replicating the parent plants behavior His answer was that he has sometimes forced some plants to go to seed in their first year to increase stock with no adverse effects.I am still not sure as other people have given me conflicting information,with all this in mind and following Medwyns article in the GN. this week on the very same subject I have decided to root another batch of 70 plants from one of this years seeded Leeks to see what happens IE will they or won't they go to seed  in their first year. I will be growing them in parallel with Dave's plants to see what happens.

Head split in half

Grass planted to start rooting
These small leek grass will start to go upright in about a week I planted the bottom of the grass vertical so when the tops straighten as they grow towards the light i should have nice straight plants
You may remember that I had a go at rooting some grass about 6 weeks ago just to practice the technique,these plants are now doing very well but I will not be growing them on because they were too early I may grow them through the winter in the heated tunnel for kitchen use.
ones i rooted earlier
The head gardener has now moved back from Lancashire which is a blessing and we now see him every day as he is just across the road, he visited the garden the other day to check out the progress of the sprouts for Christmas only to find they have grown rather large.

I have also continued with the revamp to the large tunnel the long carrot and parsnip house has gone and the bed has been raised and filled with compost mix.This will be perfect for beetroot as the compost is nice and open texture which should allow the tap roots to grow nice and straight
Monday was the day that I bit the bullet  and sowed the giant onions for next year I was not going to bother but after being stood with Peter glazebrook when he officially beat the world record and just buying a packet of seeds from him I regained the bug to grow a giant, also I have promised Dan some plants for the spring to see if he can finally break 10 pounds, he will probably make a mess of it as usual but we will see.The packet of seeds had just over 50 in it for £6 I sowed 48 in modules and will now wait for some signs of germination we only need about 10 plants between us so some spares will be given away as I pot them on

    The over winter onion setts are doing nicely and I also have some plants from seed donated by Richard veg Patch which are also doing nicely