As Long As You Have A Garden

Monday, 15 September 2014

Bloom Where You're Planted?

Which brings me to the roses. When we moved on to the property the flower beds were in a similar neglected state to the kitchen garden. Food trumped flowers, I can't believe I'm saying that. The only improvement in the lives of the flowers were they got watered on a regular basis. To be honest only the roses got watered. All the other guys just kind of muscled in as they have done for years.

not bad for all day shade
gasp-this one is blooming

Sorry, these aren't the before pictures, There are no inspirational after pictures.  I'm just letting you know the rose rescue has finally begun. Watch out daisies.

As for the bloom where you're planted thing, whoever said it was no gardener. Plants thrive when the conditions are right, just like me.

Wednesday, 10 September 2014

I've Been Scrumped.

Definition of scrumping from urbandictionary:

Stealing fruit, especially apples, from someone else's trees. British. It's considered less bad than, say, shoplifting, but adults still disapprove

Yes, it's true. The bear came in the night and

Monday, 1 September 2014

When You Are Tired Of Digging

I'm calling this time of my life The Summer Of Digging. We've dug all the old beds and turned in compost and fertiliser and cover crops. Holes for daffodils, crocus and bluebells was next. Then areas were cleared for wildflowers. Big holes followed for fruit bushes and roses. The mud filled drainage ditch was cleared during

Monday, 25 August 2014

Amazing Buckwheat

Up until last week we had three beds full of buckwheat.

As I've watched it grow, and discovered more about it, I've become a big fan. I planted it as a cover crop and green manure for the most dismal of beds in the kitchen garden. 
It adds bulk to the soil, kick starts organisms and aids in the absorption of phosphorous, potassium, calcium, and nitrogen.
It grows quickly-up to four feet in a month in my case. It is a good plant for sustaining interest in the growing process for small children. Turn under any time after flowering. Two or three crops can be grown in a season. While growing they suppress weeds.
The flowers attract bees, hover flies (aphid hunters) and parasitic wasps (caterpillar killers). Our patch has been vibrating with life. I planted beans and peas close to them to take advantage of the pollinators.

I could hardly bring myself to cut it down but I needed a bed for over wintering turnips.

It takes about ten days to break down in the soil. Its fibrous root system improves soil aeration and friability. I turned it all under and a week later already have beautiful soil. When I attack the other two beds I'm going to save myself some hard work, I hope, by covering with compost and sea soil and letting it break down before I dig it in. Some of those stalks didn't want to go under without a fight.

Talking of stalks, I saved some as winter housing for hibernating insects.

The flowers are small, white turning to deep pink then a rust colour. I brought some indoors with some sweet peas. They last a long time, perhaps it is the hollow stems.

I've become so enamoured of buckwheat it will make a regular appearance in the garden from now on. I do so love getting value for money.