Friday, 13 July 2018

Full House?

Brassicas growing away

The allotment is flush with produce despite the drought conditions. What targeted watering I have done has produced results where I want without encouraging the weeds.

Globe artichokes - Just one plant
Lush Legumes

Peas please

Blueberries starting to ripen

Coy Carrots 

Potato Patch

Riotous Raspberries - bumper crop this year.
But there are still gaps that I haven't got around to filling.  Just as well as I have a programme of summer/autumn sowing I want to follow this year.  The beauty is that the weeds have left the bare patches bare (pretty much - lets not get to carried away and forget all weeding)

Bare patch between salads and sweetcorn

Alliums looking a bit sparse after cropping autumn planted onions and garlic
It has been extraordinarily dry, but the crops seem to have persevered.  Curiously the one crop that has refused to perform is courgettes and squashes,  and this despite preferential watering!  I'm hoping the ones that have survived have time to play catchup.

Wednesday, 27 June 2018

Vertical Challenge

Another visit to the School Garden for this "vertical garden".  It consists of a supported pallet with various second use plastic tubs wired to it.  It was going to be "vertical veg" but it is a lot less challenging to find drought forgiving plants for the summer holiday if you don't restrict it to edible veg.

As an exercise in using a small space to grow in using recycled materials it has been a lot of fun.  I think it might evolve a bit over the coming year with the lessons learned. It literally is lifting higher and higher!

Monday, 25 June 2018

For The Record - New Potatoes and Greenhouse Update

The all time record temperature for Edinburgh is 30C. Well we are pushing that today.  But the real record is the earliness of some of the crops.

25th June is about the earliest I have ever had new potatoes.  These Ballydoon were grown in sacks in  our back garden.

The spuds are not the only competitor for the earliest ever award. These Mini cucumbers are full size (for them) and it looks like there are plenty more to come.

I did buy these in as baby plants, but the tomatoes are all grown from seed:

The only greenhouse disappointment has been the Chillies which should be happy as Larry but are not.  Possibly cold nights are a factor, possibly low light (the greenhouse is overshadowed by a hedge, but I am at a loss to understand why they are not growing away and loosing leaves instead! Suggestions welcome.

Wednesday, 20 June 2018

Living Roof - Recycled Plastic

My approach to gardening has been as an avid vegetable grower.  The dictum has been: If you can't eat it - don't grow it.  So you might detect a bit of self consciousness about this post but also the enthusiasm of the convert.  The latest project I have been involved with has got Sedum, Saxifrage, Sempervivum, Ajuga....  Nothing you would want to eat but each ideal for a living green roof. Ok it doesn't look that green yet, but all the trays are second use supermarket food trays, so there are green credentials built into the design. If any module fails or overgrows it's neighbours, it can easily be removed, replanted or pruned and replaced.  The whole thing sits atop the bug school bug hotel and, I should mention, was planted up by the School Eco Group.  It will add an extra dimension to the 'hotel' in attracting pollinating winged insects.   

Insect Hotel with Living Roof:

Now what song could possibly suit this post?

Friday, 15 June 2018

Arthropodeum - Bug Hotel

If you think I have been a bit quiet lately, one factor has been that I have been devoting rather a lot of time to a School Garden and in particular to this bug hotel project.  It is work in progress as I have a green roof to set on top and a pond to sink alongside it too.  It's fair to say that I have got the bug.

Tuesday, 12 June 2018

Friday, 1 June 2018

I'm Happy When It Rains

 Before the flowers on our Wisteria get washed away I just wanted to record it in all its glory.  

Almost as if it was waiting for the change of month the first significant rain in weeks arrived yesterday in Edinburgh.  I recall that April 2017 was exceptional in that we got 3mm of rain in the whole month. Well May 2018 will not be as low as that but was exceptionally dry.  In addition Edinburgh traditionally gets its last ground frost in May. There was none this May - so the last frost date will either be in April or June. We certainly have had hail showers in the summer before. Hindsight is a wonderful thing because if we had known this was how it was to be in advance we could have started our courgettes and sweetcorn a month earlier!