Tuesday, 27 April 2010

Seeds and Weeds

There is probably medication. . . but who wants to take it? :} This is a wonderful addiction and although the garden currently takes nearly all of my time I don't mind at all. The order from Chiltern Seeds arrived this morning and most have already been sown. The heated propagator is out and hopefully the cucumber seeds will come up as well as they have done in previous years.

Examining the greenhouse this morning showed that some of the first sowing of Ollie's Sunflower is germinating, constantly amazes me that from a tiny little seed all this differentiation and specialisation can develop. Although I have a sneaking suspicion that many of these sowings are a bit late and the plants won't have a long enough growing season this year to do their best, there's no harm in having a go.

In all, today I sowed more of Ollie's Sunflower and
Cucumber - Perfection
Artichoke - Green Globe
Pepper - Mini Bell Mixed
Pepper - California Wonder
Pepper - Romano Mixed
Cayenne Pepper
Anagallis - Blue
Papaver - Rhoeas
Teasel (I could live to regret this - one solitary plant in Hampshire
that was allowed to seed populated the garden for the next 8 years - and then we moved!)

Salvia Horminum - White Swan
Sweet William - auricula eyed
Viola Odorata - The Czar
Mesembryanthemum Criniflorum
Godetia, F1 - Grace mixed

and I have very mixed feelings about the Godetia. It came in a bundle from Chiltern Seeds, one of those "good value and you don't know what you will get" selections. I made a decision earlier this year not to purchase F1 seeds and rely on open pollinators that are insect friendly, Monsanto will have to get by without me. Whereas every other packet from Chiltern contained dozens if not hundreds of seeds, there were about 12 - 15 minuscule embryo in this packet.

Although I had grand plans for today which included finishing preparing the bed for our yew hedge, it was one of those days that didn't ever really get going, I did however manage to dig up two huge buckets full of dandelions.

Whilst preparing a big batch of ratatouille this evening I realised that unless I get some herbs, courgette and aubergine sown my chances of producing a completely home-grown ratty later in the year are zero ...

It hasn't taken long to fill the big propagator


  1. Well, the goldfinches won't regret your teasels for one moment, and maybe you can save some £ on the sunflower hearts whilst they gorge on teasel seed.

    Then again you'll probably end up with double the goldfinches that will finish the teasel in record time and then stay and demand sunflower hearts! Still, they are very pretty and give a good tune.

  2. Haha, I know what you mean about compulsive gardening... Went to Wilkinsons to feed a chocolate craving today and VERY nearly came out with three tea-roses I have nowhere to plant! And my seed collection has moved from biscuit tin to a whole drawer this year!

    You've scared me about the teasel - one popped up on our allotment last year and I didn't do anything about it...

  3. Ooo, I love seeds too and my garden is no where near the size of yours. I'm mostly growing my veg in pots which you'd think would restrict my seed collection... but I've no idea where I'll fit all my little seedlings! I grew baby belle peppers last year and they were really quick to ripen compared to the big ones - I got 2-3 crops off each and even better, they are perennials so if you happen to have a greenhouse or a window sill you can chop them back, and get a early start for next year! My overwintered peppers from last year are flowering now where as this years seedlings are still only 6" high.

  4. James - behave yourself!!

    Nome - a whole drawer of seeds, hmm, and I thought ~I~ had problems! If you catch the teasel seedlings early (cross between a dandelion and a thistle) they are easy enough to remove, don't panic)

    Tamsin - I don't plan to heat the g/h at all in winter and it can get very cold here, not sure even a perennial pepper would survive but there's no harm in trying I suppose.

  5. We grew some teasels on our plot years ago and are still finding seedlings - watch out as the leaves are really prickly and pop them somewhere fairly wild.

  6. You should be ok with everything but the peppers (unless we get a brilliant year!) but if they don't come to much, choose a couple of decent looking ones and keep them going over winter on the house willdowsill. Early crop next year to make everyone jealous!
    I don't do well with aubergines - even sown in Feb. They grow ok, set, but never ripen.

  7. Thank you Flummery, as you are the second person in 24 hours to recommend over-wintering the peppers (didn't know you could do this) then I reckon the die is cast and that is what I am meant to be trying!


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