Monday, 23 May 2011

A problem with wind...

Hi all

I'm sat here a bit scared folks - I have a big wind problem.  No I don't need charcoal tablets - but I would like to dash home and bring in all of the tomatoes and cucumbers that I put outside yesterday!  The wind is so strong today and gusty I'm terrified of going home and just finding a few pots with snapped stems with the plants being whisked off to oz!  My pooooor baybeeees!

I've had a busy busy weekend.  Got to the allotment on Saturday.  As we all know, I am struggling a bit with the allotment, but I have some new rules I think.  I shall firstly take care of what I have planted already - so the first job each visit is to weed and maintain the stuff that is already there, and secondly I will only dig a bed just before I plant it up.  This way no bed will be waiting for weeks and weeks and getting all horrid and weedy again (like they are now)...  so that's what I did.  I weeded all through the potatoes and onions and the beans and I could NOT resist seeing what was happening with the potatoes while I was at it!  LOOOKIE LOOOOKIE

I know its daft but I'm sooooo proud of them!  I AM the first on the allotments and the old fellas are all scratching their heads!  Woo Hoooo I'm going to boil them and eat them with a knob of butter!  YUM :0)

I also planted out my leeks I have grown in a bucket 2 rows - I didn't dibble them in , I kind of made a trench and plopped them in along the length of this and then filled this in... We will see if this works or not!  I seem to have read a post somewhere about Amish farmers doing their leeks this way and them getting a good crop... oh well they have 2 chances.  I also thought it was time for the Brussels sprouts to be planted out.  Not sure if these will come to anything as I have pretty much neglected them.  I've bunged them in next to the leeks and thrown in some broccoli too (shop bought plants! Couldn't resist them)  I netted the Brussels and the broccoli and watered everything and then went to my Mums to get changed.

Guess what people!  I had a play date with a new friend.  Another garden/vegetable mad other person who I made pals with on the Grow Your Own website.  I  had a lovely late afternoon coffee and natter and cheese straws were all consumed, cats were petted, seeds were looked at, allotments inspected and elderflower's were picked!  I had a FAB time.  Its great to get together with another enthusiast and have a proper full on veg chat.  My husband seems to get a glazed look and I'm wondering if he is listening or thinking about football or the crack on the ceiling.... :0)

Sunday I hoofed it to Morrison's on the quest of the flower buckets.  I got 32 for £3.96!  WOW now that's a bargain.  Now you could ask at your supermarket as some seem to give them away some sell them and some dont do either and it seems to vary from shop to shop, but Morrison's are consistent and seem to sell them at every store.  I few holes in the bottom of them with a hot nail and BOB is most definitely your mothers brother and FRANCES is his wife!  A perfect home for a tomato or a cucumber... So that's what I did for most of the rest of the afternoon. 

I also started the "Armpit challenge" featured on the GYO website.  Basically the idea is to see who can get the most producing tomato plants from ONE seed.  You do this by planting up the side shoots or armpits as they are fabulously also called!  My Tigrella tomato plant had 5 armpits potted up, my Marmande four and a Gardeners Delight just the one.  I am going to photograph all of them at various stages and monitor and record how may fruits etc they all produce.  I think that these three plants will be the only ones I keep at home.  The others can go to the allotment.

Along with one yellow cherry variety that I wont bother for this experiment/challenge I think that fourteen tomato plants is enough for the time being!  And I'll need to armpit the armpits too and the original plant.... Phew I'm gonna have a Lotta toe-may-toes.  Ketchup anyone???

Mind you.... That's if they have survived the wind....

Chat soon X

PS: Saw a lovely film last night - WIN WIN about a lawyer who also coaches the local wrestling team.  Loved it.

Tuesday, 17 May 2011

Big and little things

I had a wonderful weekend just gone, and it was full of big and little joys.

Have you ever been back to a childhood haunt and found it to be so much smaller than you thought it was?  It was my primary schools 150th Anniversary celebrations this Saturday and my SIL and I wandered down (we were just down the road).  This must have been how Gulliver felt amongst the lilliputians - Gigantic.  Teeny tiny rooms and desks, and the loo's too (no trace of tracing paper loo roll these days we checked!).  Teachers who we thought were old when they taught us were there and gasp - still alive (in all honesty some of them have only just retired!)  It was wonderful to visit and see some old faces.

We also had my Nephews christening - which I shall hasten onto next - at the church I attended all through my childhood until about 14.  Again it felt much smaller - but large in grandeur, high churchiness and incense.  Quite a serious service by modern standards, but the vicar was light and joking and just right.

My Nephews christening, Mr B and I as Godparents!  Such a small thing, but how big an honour, how huge is my love for our dearest little boy, our godson!  Such a tiny bundle of enormous joy.  Already his wish is our command and only 9 months old...

And from the sublime to the ridiculous - flowers on my Tomatoes at last.

Happiness can be found in many places but don't over look the big or the little things!

Chat soon X

Monday, 9 May 2011

I drowned a Bee!

It dived into my tea yesterday while I was in the potting shed!  I promptly threw the tea out but it was already deeeeed... I hadn't even drunk any of it!

BAHHHHH on both counts

I did however fill up my own hanging baskets, sowed some more beans green and yellow bush french beans and some green kale (thanks for the Kale seeds goes to Jono at a truly fab veg growing/allotmenteering site with added geekery and excel spreadsheets - awesome!)  So all was not lost.  Thinking about it I think the big looser here was probably the bee..... :0<

Chat soon X

Ooooh I did however buy new shoes for the me nephews Christening next Sunday!  :0>

Friday, 6 May 2011

Return of the Triffids

Okay, it seems like ages since last weekend but its also gone in a flash and its Friday again.  Seriously suffering from Bank Holiday Lag.  All week I've been thinking that Tuesday was Monday the Thursday was Friday.  I'm glad to get a lie in bed tomorrow just to stop my head from spinning.

Last weekend of course was the Royal Wedding!  Absolutely FAB I loved it.  I also went to B&Q in the morning to get something for My Brothers 40th.  Had a nice chat with the reductions guy and he cheekily asked if I'd like 50% off the herb planter I was eyeing.  After a second thinking "OMG" I spluttered out yes and he did!  Waaa heyyy! With a 10% voucher also I properly felt like scrooge! 

After the TV event we went to the local hall and had tea and cakes with the local biddies, then over to my Mums for a birthday takeaway for my brother.  Saturday we went to see Mr B's Mum and Dad, MIL took me to the Sweeps festival (Which seemed like a Morris Dancing meet up) and she also found time to stuff us full of food (practically from one end to the other)  Don't know how they are both so slim.  Sunday we visited TWO national trust properties and on Monday we had a full on Xmas dinner.  Tuesday I cried and begged to be allowed back to work for a rest...

I had a spare hour on Friday so I have started off all of my squash.  I was lucky enough to be included in one of the seed parcels on the Grow your own website (
My very favourite place on the web to hang out.  So I had lost of varieties to try from there and I had some of my own too.  I have sown, jack be little, spaghetti, hasta la pasta, red kuri, yellow courgette and green courgette, tromba d'albenga (I've probably forgotten some too).  I also sowed some runner beans.  Now peeps I sowed these in small peat pots in a heated propagator.  Don't do this!  The seedlings were up in days and now need potting up (yes in one week)  I could virtually SEE them growing.  Some are about 6 inches high and some of the beans are in a right 2 & 8 sprouting every which way.  Also I was careful to plant 1 squash per pot I do have some with 2 seedlings in.  I now have a grand total of 27 squash seedlings.  I don't know where I'm going to put them either!  I guess I can sneak some to my mums and some at the allotment.  I'm going to try and get some Trellis to grow stuff up and maybe build some sort of wooden obelisky type things for the garden and allotment... we will see!  If I cant place them then I will have to give them as presents... I love presents (giving and receiving!).  I also sowed 12 little gem lettuces, 12, Webb's wonderful lettuces, 24 beetroot, and 18 french beans (three different varieties which have NOT Germinated).  I have also done during the week most of my potting up, so no more cukes languishing in starter pots.  It does mean I'm running out of space so currently the poor aubergines are in the blowaway greenhouse outside with the non germinating beans and the lettuce/beetroot.

It's like we are being taken over by Triffids... If I don't post next week, alert the police.... Or the Royal Horticultural Society or summat... I don't fancy being plant food much!

Chat soon X

EDIT: Oooooh we saw Thor at the Cinema - Chris Hemmsworth - HUBBA HUBBA!