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Posts Tagged ‘March’

Support Please

First – Thanks to all of you who left comments and e-mails with regards to my sons wedding. We all had a fabulous day, I cried buckets, and I am just so happy and proud of all my children.

Today I spent 3 hours in a friends garden. Her passion-flower had blown down off the wall a couple of months ago and I went to sort it out. This plant was on the wall when she inherited the garden, and last summer it was looking very healthy and bloomed prolifically. However, to-day I discovered that it had been growing through chicken wire attached to the wall, and the poor plant was in a dreadful mess.

The main stems showed signs of rubbing and wear where the wire had cut into them and I am not sure if it had ever been well pruned.

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passion-flower tangled in chicken wire.
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It is important, before you even buy a climber to put proper support in place. I know that I am some times guilty of planting something and thinking that I will put the trellis/post/wires, whatever is appropriate in at a later date.

Then the plant grows – looks well and other things in the garden take your attention and before you can say “passiflora caerulea” (which I am not sure that I can say) Your climber has out-grown its twig, or bit of string that was temporarily holding it to the wall.

Passion flowers do not respond to “hard pruning” otherwise I could of cut it off and started again – as you can do with some other climbers.

So support your climbers well, as three hours of snipping away at chicken wire is not much fun.

In my garden, the magnolia has bloomed – but as the weather forecast is for heavy rain and wind, the blooms may not last very long, however it is a thing of beauty, which I shall enjoy for as long as I may.

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Pennyroyal

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I have been wondering for a few weeks now why I grew Pennyroyal (Mentha Pulegium) from seed last year and more importantly why I had decided to plant a strip of it down one side of my raised beds?

50 maybe the new 30 – but my brain hasn’t caught on to that fact – and still forgets more things than it remembers. So I went on-line to remind my self of the properties of Pennyroyal and see if it jogged my memory about why I decided to grow it. I knew there would be a reason – I just couldn’t remember what.

Of course! – it is a natural ant repellent, and I had planted it in the veg bed because ants insisted on living there along side the lettuce. So I dug it up – because after a year – the ants must of moved on, but as you can see from these rather poor photos – they have not moved on, they are now living in the roots of the pennyroyal

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So that didn’t work at all – back to the drawing board……

Of all the “creepy crawlies” that inhabit my garden Ants are the ones that make me shudder most.

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This is my second Garden Bloggers Bloom Day – hosted by Carol at May Dreams Garden, do go and check out what is blooming around the world and on your doorstep.

I still have hellebore’s, daffs, and pulmonaria gently flourishing in the garden.

These have now been joined by camellia, wild primroses, vinca, and the blossom on the dark leaved prunus.

The buds of the magnolia are poised ….. waiting ….. promising …..

The main event this month is the unfurling of leaves. My Weeping willow is showing a haze of bright green at the bottom of the garden. So for me – promise of things to come is the word for this month.

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And lest we forget … the weeds are also making a come back!

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Please click on the pictures to enlarge them

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A Cunning Plan

Carrot Tub

This is my cunning plan – my secret weapon in an attempt to grow carrots!

Last year I failed miserably with carrots. I had two attempts – and my carrots were rubbish – well actually the second lot were not rubbish – just about 1/4 inch long.

We have very stony damp soil here – not ideal carrot growing soil at all. So this year I have filled a half barrel with a soil and sand mix – and I am going to try growing these short stumpy carrots – “Parmex”.

Parmex Carrot

I have no idea what this variety tastes like – so if you grow them do let me know! Also in the same tub I am growing “Cherry Belle” Radish.

Quite often people grow carrot – with onions or garlic – as this is said to deter the carrot fly – which seeks out carrots by scent. I am trying the Radish/Carrot combination as I am hopeful that the quick growing radish will open up the soil for the carrot.

Radish “Cherry Belle”

Carrot fly should not be a problem – as apparently they fly close to the ground. Currently the tub is covered with its own little rain hood – to keep off some of the downpours we are experiencing – then later in the season I will swap this for a fine mesh – then maybe … just maybe … my cunning plan will work and we will have carrots to eat!

These seeds have come out of packets with pictures on – I don’t expect for one moment my produce to look like this – I wish the seed suppliers wouldn’t put pictures on the packets – but I totally understand why they do. Have your radish EVER looked so uniform? so shiny red on the outside? so crisply white in the middle? – mine haven’t!

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Good news and Bad news – which do you want first?

Mice decided to have a party in the greenhouse last night – they danced, then feasted on sweet pea seeds!

Interestingly they only went for the seeds in flower pots – they left the ones in the cardboard tubes from the inside of kitchen roll, which probably explains why I have not had this problem before. I do know that mice are partial to sweet pea seeds, and this year I ran out of cardboard tubes and put the excess seed in flower pots.

I just have a vision of two mice sitting comfortably on either side of the flowerpots munching at the seeds!

The Good News is that my black cow parsley (Anthriscus sylvestris Ravenswing) has germinated.

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It is quite a dull picture and I am probably the only person who is excited by this (They have taken nearly a year to germinate)

So below is the tub that one of my sons sent me for Mothers day. A wonderful treat of seasonal colour.

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