Looking back I can see that I sowed the chilli seeds in January last year and we had already seen the first seedlings popping up by now and so it would make sense to say that in sowing the first of our seeds today, we are a tad behind. However, a more detailed study of last years growing season reminds me that whilst we had indeed sown the first chilli seeds back in mid January, once they had poked their heads above the compost, they opted not to spread out their roots very much, until the much warmer weather arrived some weeks later. In fact so slow was their growth, so reluctant were they to throw out more roots, develop more leaves and branches, that I began to wonder if the whole crop was destined to fail. Thankfully their slow start didn’t have too many repercussions later on in the season, as we had one of the best chilli harvests ever. Continue reading
Earlier this week Mud opened one of the jars of Jalapenos I had pickled five weeks ago, to add to his Chicken Fajitas and declared them a success. He told me they were tasty and hot, better than the shop bought ones we spend a small fortune on each year. With lots of chillies still growing in the greenhouses, and handfuls of the incredibly successful Curry Chilli in the freezers, I decided to make a second batch of pickled Jalapenos. Continue reading
If there is one thing guaranteed to strike fear into the heart of a Land Rover owners partner, it is the words ‘We need to bleed the brakes!’ and it was those words that Mud uttered yesterday! My heart sank because bleeding the brakes of a series Land Rover is never easy, is never a quick job, always involves much cursing and swearing and invariably results in mutterings about rusted bleed nipples, located in nigh on impossible to reach places, due to the nonsensical design whims of the Land Rover engineers of by-gone days. Continue reading
Following on from Middle Mudlets success at a local show in August, both girls have been preparing for another local show which took place last weekend.
It doesn’t seem 5 minutes since I first agreed to help out with Gardening Club but in actual fact it has been 8 years since the day I turned up with my spade and gloves and started to dig over the vegetable bed area for the resident gardening club organiser. At THAT time the vegetable patch was quite literally that – a patch of bare ground in the middle of a grass play area which was dug over every year but plans were afoot and, following a successful application to the National Lottery Grants for All, the vegetable garden evolved into the raised bed, poly tunnel space that it now is, although even that space has since developed further with two of the raised beds being dismantled last year (2017) and used to edge a new long bed by the poly tunnel. Continue reading
There is a flower bed outside and just across from, our back door. I KNOW it’s a flower bed because over the years I have planted out and sown seeds for a whole variety of species, from campanulas to wildflowers, lupins to forget-me-knots and yet, with the exception of the straggly looking Buddleia which I grew from seed a few years ago, up until this morning, you could have been forgiven to thinking that this bed was nothing but a weed patch. Continue reading
When Middle Mudlet asked me if she could have her own patch of garden this year, little did I know that this was to prove one of the most challenging growing years of my short home growing experience. What a year for my middle child to dip her toe into the vegetable growing world!
When Middle Mudlet and I planted out the first set of Pentland Javelin potatoes way back in on April 15, ten weeks until harvest seemed ever such a long way into the future and yet here we are, just over eleven weeks on and yesterday, Middle Mudlet went digging for gold and her teenage self was as excited at the discovery of creamy skinned tubers, as any of my younger club gardeners. Continue reading
Even as a child I wasn’t fond of thunder, preferring to take refuge under my bed covers, fingers in my ears, assuring my teddy bears and dolls that there was nothing to be scared of. Nowadays, as a parent I have to present a confident and untroubled front, not always easy when each bang and flash brings back that urge to hide. Continue reading
A few years ago I sowed some Sweet William seed and dotted around my garden are three or four mature specimens from this sowing. I get a huge sense of satisfaction watching seeds I sowed turn to seedlings and mature into healthy plants and there is a real joy in seeing flowering plants come back stronger year after year and as a tribute to these beautiful plants I’m sharing this picture of one of the stars of my garden, a glorious, cluster of deep pink Sweet William flowers.