Growing with Rachel
19.01.2024 - 15:00 / clairesallotment.com
Apart from the odd bit of snow about the rest has all gone, and the world is green again! I only worked a morning today, so this afternoon I was able to get out into the greenhouse and sow a load of seeds. The temperature in the greenhouse is about 15 degrees so that’s a good temperature for seeds to germinate. I’ve got a lot to go through, so if you’re ready and sitting comfortably, then I’ll begin.
I’ll start with the fruits and veggies first, and then move onto a few flowers. I’ve attached some of the sowing videos from before to help you, and I’ll put links to all the seed companies I used.
Tomatoes – Now I did promise myself I wouldn’t grow as many different varieties as I normally do, plus I’m hoping to grow some of the tomatoes out in the raised beds this year (that may change later, but that’s the plan so far). I’ve only got four different varieties this year and a couple are from Spain, so unless you live there, or are able to visit, you may have to choose a slightly different variety. “Minibel Cocoktail” are small cherry tomatoes. You can buy seeds from Johnsons, but this is a compact plant, where as the ones I have, grow very tall. The other Spanish variety I have is “Supermarmande” which you can also buy from Thompson and Morgan, these are beef steak tomatoes. Then some good old reliable “Gardener’s Delight”, and then finally because they seemed so interesting some “Giant Tree Tomatoes“.
Chilli’s, sweet and hot – Again from Spain some “Padron Peppers”, but you can find the seeds at Marshalls if you want to give them a go. Then onto some Sweet Peppers, “California Wonder” and “Rainbow Mixed”. Mine grew brilliantly last year so I’m hoping for some great ones this year as well. Now onto something a little hotter.
Growing with Rachel
I have given up indoor seed starting completely on several occasions. The first time it happened I was a novice gardener. I had ordered seeds of just about every plant that I saw in the garden catalogs without thinking about such practical things as gallons of potting soil, hours of daily watering, and square feet of windowsill space. It also did not occur to me to determine whether or not I had room in my garden for even a fraction of my seedlings. My chaotic efforts eventually produced some wonderful plants, but the process was so exhausting that I said: “Never again.”
I spent the morning putting the guttering round the newly covered chicken run, and also fixing some of the guttering at the back of the chicken house.
Today I turned forty mumble, mumble, mumble today. A fabulous start to the day with the kids coming in early with some wonderful pressies. I got another t-shirt (garden themed of course), some unusual fruit teas which most are very difficult to get in the shops, a wonderful new note book to write down any novel idea I have (I’ve got a few notes to do on my first novel, but am thinking about what happens in the second book already), a couple of fabric head bands, The Greatest Showman Bly Ray (it’s one of those films, when I’m feeling a bit weird and not myself I’ll sit and watch. I think I’m over the top of the hill with the weird feelings, but it’s taking a long while to descend the mountain), the Sarah Pinborough novel Behind Her Eyes, if you’ve not seen the 6 part drama I suggest you give it a go. And finally some new slippers that are so cozy to put your feet inside, and the softest dressing gown I have ever felt and some money from various other people.
It’s not usual that you can plan ahead for when you’re going to have to spend a day in bed, because you never know when you’re going to be ill. But later this evening I am having my first Covid jab and knowing how it wiped out my husband for an entire day was starting to worry me a little.
Today was a day off! I know it sounds odd, but I tend to have the third Monday of the week off at the moment (I’m sure that’ll change soon), so as the weather was fabulous again I went back out into the garden to finish off those things I couldn’t get done yesterday.
This week is a very odd week as there is a 5th Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday in the month. Usually I just work the 1st, 2nd, 3rd and 4th days of the month so having a 5th is a bonus day off. I worked Wednesday because I always do, but today I was down our local pub, no not for a pint of beer at 9am, but to give their raised beds and various flower beds a tidy up.
It doesn’t happen very often that I have an afternoon free during the week, but today I did. So it was the perfect time to sow all my April seeds, inside and out. After lunch I grabbed a cup of tea and my April box of seeds and off I went to the greenhouses to start.
When I got back from work today, I sat down for half an hour and had a lovely hot cup of tea. The sun was shining outside and so before I needed to get dinner on the go I decided to pop out into my garden to get a few bits done.
Thank you everyone for all your kind words regarding my latest migraine, I found out many new things, one being that bananas can bring on attacks. I love bananas, they’re my favourite all year round fruit. I’ve decided to stop eating them for a month to see what happens, and if I don’t get a migraine at all in that time then I’ll have to find another favourite fruit that isn’t too expensive.
Today I was only supposed to be working from 9am-1pm and was planning on being in my garden when I got home. But first thing this morning the heavens opened and it was going to be one of those on and off heavy rain shower days again. So having spoken to the client I was supposed to be visiting that day, we both decided that it would be better to take the morning off. It was good that I did, because it did exactly what it said on the tin.
Well it’s here!! It rained all night and strong winds as Storm Darcy battered out bedroom windows upstairs. But as we were eating our breakfast the rain began turning to snow. Because the ground was very wet I wasn’t expecting it to settle, but as the morning went on it became heavy snow and very large flakes, so it started to cover the ground. It was sub zero, but apparently felt like -8 with the wind chill. And it felt like that when I went to give the chickens their breakfast this morning.