Stan - Plot 33:
On Wednesday I received my new variable electric propagator. I set it up in my greenhouse at home & filled the trays with the appropriate compost.
One day later, with the compost warmed through, I started to take Fuchsia cuttings of various varieties. The trick is to find yourself a nice plant from which to take your cuttings. I made sure there was no signs of disease then I found a stems with a couple of pairs of leaves and I cut the stems so that they were about 2” long. I then removed the surplus leaves which exposed a leaf node, and cut the stem up to where the leaf node was. That’s it, ready for planting into prepared pots. You can dip the end of the stem in hormone rooting powder or not. Sometimes I do, but the powder doesn’t seem to make much difference if the cuttings are healthy.
I hope some of these plants will be available for Jeff to sell with his other plants with the money going to his charity.
I also set the Dahlia tubers on my other propagator in the hope of having cutting available for the middle of March and then growing on ready to plant out in early June.
Now is a good time to sow broad beans if you haven’t done already. I have sown Bunyards Exhibition in the cold part of my greenhouse. This variety has not let me down in the past.
In the next few weeks there will be many seeds that can be sown. Like me, keep checking your seed packets for the appropriate dates.
This is my first attempt at a blog. I'm not sure how to structure it but hopefully it will get better as I carry on.
My wife Jean and I work our plot together (plot 4). Its February and at this time of year there isn't a great deal to do on the plot other than digging over the ground, clearing weeds and generally getting the site prepared for the coming season. Today was all about potatoes. Last week I prepared my seed potatoes by standing them in egg boxes in the hope that they will "chit" or sprout, ready for planting. The secret is to keep them quite cool. At the moment they are in our spare bedroom with the heating off but I am not sure that Jean is too impressed by that so I may move them into the greenhouse and protect them from frost with a bit of fleece.
I am digging trenches at the moment ready for the potatoes. We are having three rows this year, early and late crops. This year we are trying Arran Pilot and Cara. We haven't grown them before so watch this space. Today I finished the third trench and put in some leaf mould from our leaf bay together with some rather smelly chicken manure pellets and Blood Fish & Bone food for good measure. Normally I would put in cow manure but this year I thought I would try something different.
The weather was cold today but it didn't stop us from doing some work. Jean was road testing her new oscillating hoe and was very impressed with it. It gets deeper than a standard hoe, and because it has blades front and back, you can use it with a forward and backward action.
The cold weather is always a good excuse to get the kettle on and so we stopped for a cuppa and a chat with the plot holders who were around. The talk soon came around to Man U's abysmal performance last night in the European League in Denmark. The least said about that, the better.
I finished with a quick trip to the tip with a few buckets of debris and the plot is now looking pretty clear. All in all, we put in 2 hours work (including the tea) so it was a fairly useful morning.
Copyright Jean Price - Walton Road Allotments © 2017