Tidying gardens in Stevenage, Welwyn Garden City, Knebworth & surrounding villages.
If you would like help in the garden, whether it's for a few hours a week, a month or more, then please get in touch.
Tel: 07963 291504

Fully booked for 2020.

Friday, 14 August 2015

Small Scale Veg Growing



Earlier in the year, the lovely folk at Suttons sent me a heap of veg seeds to trial.
These included a pack of spring collection Seed Tapes which look like thin strips of loo roll, with seeds impregnated in the ‘tissuey’ fabric at regular intervals. (There is a winter collection too)


You get 10 veg strips per pack which have to be gently torn apart to get to the veg seed strip you wish to plant.
For goodness sake, do not….I repeat…DO NOT ‘sow’ your seed strips on a windy day. Unless you want your garden to look like a scene from an Andrex disaster movie, might I suggest sowing on a ‘waftless’ day. Remember, I do these experiments so you don’t have to.


These are our ‘Square Foot Gardening’ beds which had been topped up with fresh compost. It’s quite simple, make a shallow drill (don’t breathe out), lay the thin tissue strip in to the hole (do not exhale), quickly, before a gnat wafts by, cover the strips, label, water, stand back and BREATHE!!


The photo above was taken earlier in the year and you can see my beetroot, carrots & lettuce lines had sprouted. I didn’t sow everything in the pack.


These photos were taken this morning.
The lettuce has been eaten, the carrots & some beetroot given away. I have a feeling Master TG pinched all the spring onions. These strips were an excellent idea, no thinning, no judging sowing distances, just cover, water, smile at occasionally & wait.
Easy veg growing!


This is the same bed, which later in the year I added my own sweetcorn & tomato seedlings to. After last years sweetcorn disaster where I forgot to shake the pollen, I made sure that I gave them a damn good shaking & finger wagging…result…


…big, fat, juicy cobs.


Meanwhile, in the other bed, my main tomato crop is firming up nicely but not reddening up quick enough for my liking…Grrr.


I am a sucker for a weak seedling, if a seed has taken the trouble to grow but there are trillions of them then I’m afraid I have to give them a chance. So these black troughs running alongside the greenhouse are the ‘thinnings’ that survived.


The strawberries were a great success this year. These are just grown in troughs alongside the raised beds.
So there you have it.
Don’t forget, apart from the troughs, ALL of my veg is growing in 2 SMALL raised beds that measure just under 1m x 1.5m. You really can do soooooo much in a tiny space.


This photo was also taken this morning after a downpour which we needed, so thank you Mother Nature.
Have a fab weekend everyone!

Saturday, 1 August 2015

Tigers in the Tidy Garden

After growing these in a client's garden last year I promised myself I'd get my mitts on some of these Tigridia Pavonia flowers (AKA Tiger flowers) for the Tidy Garden.

Well you could have knocked me down with a lettuce leaf and called me Vera when I found them for sale back in March at our local Range store at £1.99 for 7 bulbs, PLUS they were in one of their BOGOF offers, so another 7 for nowt!

 I popped all 14 bulbs in a medium sized pot (about 12-14" across), that way I can bring them in over winter when they'll need a bit of protection from the cold & potential winter wet.

It behaves exactly the same as a day lily with several buds per stem.It doesn't matter that they only seem to flower one at a time, nor does it matter that each bloom lasts just one day.
They're big, bold, brassy and beautiful AND totally worth it.

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