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Author Topic: Seed orders for 2020  (Read 1783 times)

Fleecewife

  • Joined May 2010
  • South Lanarkshire
    • Wester Gladstone Hebridean Sheep
Re: Seed orders for 2020
« Reply #30 on: February 03, 2020, 12:47:23 pm »
Got your reply, Juliet, thank you, look after yourself.  Hopefully see you and  Gordon at the Smalholders Festival in October  :wave:

Having moved in Autumn last year and loads of renovations needed in the house, I haven't got far with garden plans, other than some fruit bushes and a couple of apple trees for the big skelp of land at the west side of the house

I've carpeted the piece of grass at the other side of the house aiming to put in raised beds (like really raised - hip height) but it may be summer before they'll be planted up. 

I'm thinking flowers in the ones seen from the road, with veg behind them.  It's quite protected from the elements but I haven't decided what to put in yet.  What's the  latest planting times for veg - I'm in Central Scotland so no real extremes of weather.

There's a large piece of grass down at the roadside which I've offered to the primary school to plant up via the council website but had no response - I suppose most schools have their own ground  :'(  I though I was being helpful.


Maybe identify the one person at the school who is interested in growing and approach them direct?  There usually seems to be one person who keeps the interest in gardening going.


For latest planting times it depends on what you are growing, and you may have to experiment a bit to get used to your new plot.  I have lived in various places in Britain and have had to relearn how to garden with each move!  Many seed packets give a range of dates for sowing and sometimes they tell you how many weeks they need between sowing and harvesting.  If they are frost tender, then work backwards from your first expected frost, so everything you sow should be eaten before it gets killed.
www.scothebs.co.uk

Do something today that your future self will thank you for - plant a tree

Draco dormiens nunquam titillandus - let sleeping dragons lie
Voss Electric Fence

Briggsy from Gower

  • Joined Nov 2018
Re: Seed orders for 2020
« Reply #31 on: February 03, 2020, 12:56:12 pm »
Hi Anke,

Will check it out.

I have gone with trial, error and successional sowing for autumn sowing, currently have celery, winter radish, swede & kohl rabi all going strong in the tunnel, normally I would also have beetroot, but I am giving the ground a rest as last years looked a pit sickly. Coming along nicely for the hungry gap - cabbage and wawa (fleshy oriental stem thingy).

This may not suit your climate, however here in South Wales I NEVER shut the polytunnel doors, I soon found that sacrificing a week or so at each end of the season was much more preferable than seeing veg go to rot. We had minus 5 a couple of weeks ago and the straggling nasturtiums and a few volunteer spuds managed to survive. In our damp climate ventilation is king!


Fleecewife

  • Joined May 2010
  • South Lanarkshire
    • Wester Gladstone Hebridean Sheep
Re: Seed orders for 2020
« Reply #32 on: February 03, 2020, 01:22:41 pm »
It's lovely to see you are all starting to get spring sowing under way.  I know I was a bit early before, but it's one of the ways I cope with the dark days of midwinter - planning for the growing season.
It looks like I shall have my leeks going to seed this year then!  Last year I sowed Leek Below Zero F1 in the third week of March and we are eating them now, although not all have filled out yet.  It's always a juggle between sowing too early and sowing so late the crop doesn't mature.  This year I sowed some more below Zero F1, Stocky F1 (free seeds) and the rest are my old favourite Musselburgh, which is open pollinated, so in theory I could collect seeds from them. They are in modules in the house, but not heated.  Usually I sow them in the unheated greenhouse.  I keep fairly good records, so I will see how they compare with each other and with previous years.  If they bolt then I'll know it was too soon.


In fact last year I didn't sow any seeds before the third week of March, but then I had been ill all winter ( :fc:  to keep that Wuhan flu away this year).  I never sow tomatoes before late March anyway as I have nowhere to keep them other than the propagator which is large, but lives on the bedroom windowsill, so 3' tall plants are a nuisance  :o   They always grow too leggy in spite of the grow light.
I think I'll keep the onion sets for another couple of weeks before they go in.  They can be protected with fleece in the tunnel, but I don't want to lose them to bolting because of light levels


I grow all my potatoes outside in the open garden - earthing up is my favourite job  ;D .  In our first year with the tunnel about 20 odd years ago I did try early tatties in the tunnel and all it did was bring blight in to the tomato crop  :rant: @Polyanya as well as the potatoes I also grow broad beans and some brassicas outside, also a large plot of Helichrysum for the flying insects and for me! I usually grow carrots and parsnips in a large raised bed (hip height like Doganjo's) but this year is its fallow year covered in chicken manure and cardboard.  Sometimes I grow peas - sugar snap and some podded - outside, but a couple of years ago I lost the whole lot just when they were about ready to crop - mice chewed through the pods and stole all the peas inside.  A previous year they had done that with broad beans - Jade but not crimson flowered, picky devils!  I sometimes grow beetroot outdoors, but we had such a huge success with growing them in the tunnel last year that we'll do that again this year.


@Anke don't you find Charles Dowdings sowing times are a bit early for up here?  I'll look again as I do like his ways, and he is the reason for our new raised beds and for the mushroom compost in which I am placing all my hopes.


@Briggsy from Gower, I love your mouse already!  I bet you don't.  We had a rat infestation last summer, in the flower garden as well as the veg area, but most have been dealt with now.  There are mice still but I don't have the heart to kill them.  I try to think up ever more complicated ways to best them, but I usually end up the loser.  It is definitely worth keeping records, because although you think you will remember everything you have done, you just won't.  And comparing year on year is well worthwhile.


Well, the sun is shing through the falling snow and the wind is howling - it's a perfect day to work in the tunnel  :yippee: :garden: Have fun everyone
« Last Edit: February 03, 2020, 01:27:52 pm by Fleecewife »
www.scothebs.co.uk

Do something today that your future self will thank you for - plant a tree

Draco dormiens nunquam titillandus - let sleeping dragons lie

Briggsy from Gower

  • Joined Nov 2018
Re: Seed orders for 2020
« Reply #33 on: February 03, 2020, 01:50:05 pm »
Fleecewife - if you pinch out the flower shoots from onions as soon as you spot them the onion is not spoiled (unlike leeks), you may find they have a wider neck on harvesting so will not store so well, but I jut make sure they are eaten first.

Rats have moved into the compost heap this winter, hence the mice moving to the tunnel. The problem I think is that I have not been near the thing for months now, apart from bringing fresh fodder of course! My plan is to get out there this week and start digging it over, the theory being if I dig it over weekly, like what I'm supposed to do anyway, then they will get fed up and move on. We'll see!

Anke

  • Joined Dec 2009
  • St Boswells, Scottish Borders
Re: Seed orders for 2020
« Reply #34 on: February 03, 2020, 03:16:17 pm »
Fleecewife - I find Ch Dowding good for sowing into modules, but they might have to stay in the polytunnel/Keder a few days longer before transplanting. I then use fleece cover or the very fine mesh (which is almost as good as fleece) outside until things are definitely ok. Tbh, I don't really plant anything tender outside - all my squash, climbing beans, early broad beans, first crop of beetroot (Boltardy only), toms and peppers etc, all go into the Keder/polytunnel.
I will get my wire door built for the Keder this summer, OH has put the normal door in such a way that we can have an "inner" wire mesh covered door, but we need to sort out the window on the other end as well, which will require some "engineering". However on a day like today (it' windy!), no way I can leave a door open. The whole thing may take off! I think I will try next winter to leave more gaps (I have free beds still), and maybe not plant my radishes and turnips in a clump, but singly. It's all trial and error...

Fleecewife

  • Joined May 2010
  • South Lanarkshire
    • Wester Gladstone Hebridean Sheep
Re: Seed orders for 2020
« Reply #35 on: February 03, 2020, 05:06:35 pm »
Hi Fleecewife  :wave:


On a different note in a past thread you wrote about using shopping baskets from willow (I think) and I asked if you made them yourself?  :eyelashes:


Did I?  I do have lots of willow baskets that I use for all sorts, shopping, harvesting, collecting eggs, storing spinning stuff and so on.  Most I bought at various places such as RHS, TAS smallholders festival and Woolfest, all of which have the basketmakers selling their own wares.  I do have one, just one!, which I made myself a few years ago.  I went on a course in Perthshire where we made 'hedgerow baskets' from a mix of basket willow plus things like birch twigs, broom and other new growth from the trees and hedges, all freshly cut.  It was very hard work wrestling with withies, but I love my basket, which is still as perfectly functional as before, if a bit wonky, and the green of the broom has faded.  If I made any more I would have to persuade someone else to make the base for me.
I keep meaning to make my own plant supports as I have some lovely coloured willow and other stuff, and wonkiness doesn't matter so much.  haven't got around to it yet  ::)


Are you thinking of having a go at basket making?
www.scothebs.co.uk

Do something today that your future self will thank you for - plant a tree

Draco dormiens nunquam titillandus - let sleeping dragons lie

Fleecewife

  • Joined May 2010
  • South Lanarkshire
    • Wester Gladstone Hebridean Sheep
Re: Seed orders for 2020
« Reply #36 on: February 03, 2020, 05:13:31 pm »
Fleecewife - if you pinch out the flower shoots from onions as soon as you spot them the onion is not spoiled (unlike leeks), you may find they have a wider neck on harvesting so will not store so well, but I jut make sure they are eaten first.

Rats have moved into the compost heap this winter, hence the mice moving to the tunnel. The problem I think is that I have not been near the thing for months now, apart from bringing fresh fodder of course! My plan is to get out there this week and start digging it over, the theory being if I dig it over weekly, like what I'm supposed to do anyway, then they will get fed up and move on. We'll see!


Thanks for the onion tip Briggsy - I'll do that.  I find with leeks that if the instant I notice the beginnings of a flower stalk, then I use the leek, it's usually fairly edible, but obviously that doesn't work with onions.  I'm glad you can use my tip about hanging the peas and beans on the crop bars.  I did find one year that I planted the beans out too early/small, and the wretched mice still dug them up and ate the bean, leaving a dying stalk behind...
www.scothebs.co.uk

Do something today that your future self will thank you for - plant a tree

Draco dormiens nunquam titillandus - let sleeping dragons lie

Fleecewife

  • Joined May 2010
  • South Lanarkshire
    • Wester Gladstone Hebridean Sheep
Re: Seed orders for 2020
« Reply #37 on: February 03, 2020, 05:23:32 pm »
Fleecewife - I find Ch Dowding good for sowing into modules, but they might have to stay in the polytunnel/Keder a few days longer before transplanting. I then use fleece cover or the very fine mesh (which is almost as good as fleece) outside until things are definitely ok. Tbh, I don't really plant anything tender outside - all my squash, climbing beans, early broad beans, first crop of beetroot (Boltardy only), toms and peppers etc, all go into the Keder/polytunnel.
I will get my wire door built for the Keder this summer, OH has put the normal door in such a way that we can have an "inner" wire mesh covered door, but we need to sort out the window on the other end as well, which will require some "engineering". However on a day like today (it' windy!), no way I can leave a door open. The whole thing may take off! I think I will try next winter to leave more gaps (I have free beds still), and maybe not plant my radishes and turnips in a clump, but singly. It's all trial and error...


Yes I learnt not to plant anything susceptible to cold or wind outside, including corn, runner beans, french beans and squashes too.  I used to try to wrap my runners in fleece if it turned windy early on, but the fleece would be turned to shreds and the beans would not survive.  The beans have a shorter season in the tunnel, so I shall grow dwarf french beans inside in one of the beds this year and see if they are ok to pick down there.  We have a very Heath Robinson affair to keep the hares, rabbits and hens out of the tunnel when the door is open.  I like your idea of the two doors - much simpler once you've made them.  I certainly can't leave my doors or louvres open year round - even the wind we have today would have the cover off.  I find the gaps around the louvres are enough to keep a through draft in the winter, but the tunnel reaches v high temps in summer sometimes.
I'll spend an hour or two having a look at ChasD's advice tonight
« Last Edit: February 03, 2020, 10:58:05 pm by Fleecewife »
www.scothebs.co.uk

Do something today that your future self will thank you for - plant a tree

Draco dormiens nunquam titillandus - let sleeping dragons lie

GribinIsaf

  • Joined Aug 2015
  • Montgomeryshire
    • Gribin Isaf
Re: Seed orders for 2020
« Reply #38 on: February 03, 2020, 09:57:20 pm »
I have started to follow the Charles Dowding sowing calendar quite closely last years

I see you are in the Scottish Borders, we are in mid-Wales.  Can I ask you if you modified Charles Dowding's schedule for the difference in latitude?

Thanks

Anke

  • Joined Dec 2009
  • St Boswells, Scottish Borders
Re: Seed orders for 2020
« Reply #39 on: February 03, 2020, 11:02:39 pm »
I have started to follow the Charles Dowding sowing calendar quite closely last years

I see you are in the Scottish Borders, we are in mid-Wales.  Can I ask you if you modified Charles Dowding's schedule for the difference in latitude?

Thanks
No, not really. But I use module trays on my propagator in the house and then in the Keder to grow on, before planting outside, covered under fleece. Most of my early plantings are also under cover (coriander, early beetroot, broad beans, spinach -but that goes outside as well a little later. It is all just trial and error - we can have a late frost, but usually dampness and wind is more of an issue.

Tomatoes, chilli peppers, squash, courgettes are under the grow light for a little while, in the house before migrating to Keder, and then covered EVERY night with several layers of fleece, removed during the day.

GribinIsaf

  • Joined Aug 2015
  • Montgomeryshire
    • Gribin Isaf
Re: Seed orders for 2020
« Reply #40 on: February 04, 2020, 09:05:47 am »

No, not really. But I use module trays on my propagator in the house and then in the Keder to grow on, before planting outside, covered under fleece. Most of my early plantings are also under cover (coriander, early beetroot, broad beans, spinach -but that goes outside as well a little later. It is all just trial and error - we can have a late frost, but usually dampness and wind is more of an issue.

Tomatoes, chilli peppers, squash, courgettes are under the grow light for a little while, in the house before migrating to Keder, and then covered EVERY night with several layers of fleece, removed during the day.

Thanks for that.  I use a heated propagator for germination - tomatoes, chilli peppers etc.  I like to get things going early but am aware of lack of light hours.  Can you tell me more about your grow light?

Polyanya

  • Joined Mar 2015
  • Shetland
    • The Creative Croft
    • Facebook
Re: Seed orders for 2020
« Reply #41 on: February 04, 2020, 09:31:07 am »
Gosh its all ramping up isnt it hope we all have a fab growing season  :excited: Mentioning Charles Dowding, he is one of my favourites as is Joy Larkcom and Rosemary Verey - all so inspirational regarding vegetable growing - when I lived in England I had a lovely little potager garden ala Verey - can't do that here  :-\ Can't have anything above ground overwinter, root crops overwinter well but anything above ground gets shredded  :'(
Fleecewife - sorry I must have misread about the willow baskets. I love baskets made from anything that once grew but I've tried albeit briefly to fashion something that resembles a basket and the result was laughable - and I'm normally good with my hands and do lots of tricky crafty things but basketmaking has me stumped! No courses here mind, shame. I was going to attempt a soft basket last autumn from the dried stems of flag iris but the sheep ate them all  :roflanim:
In the depths of winter, I found there was in me an invincible summer - Camus

www.thecreativecroft.co.uk

Fleecewife

  • Joined May 2010
  • South Lanarkshire
    • Wester Gladstone Hebridean Sheep
Re: Seed orders for 2020
« Reply #42 on: February 04, 2020, 11:28:39 am »
Gosh its all ramping up isnt it hope we all have a fab growing season  :excited: Mentioning Charles Dowding, he is one of my favourites as is Joy Larkcom and Rosemary Verey - all so inspirational regarding vegetable growing - when I lived in England I had a lovely little potager garden ala Verey - can't do that here  :-\ Can't have anything above ground overwinter, root crops overwinter well but anything above ground gets shredded  :'(
Fleecewife - sorry I must have misread about the willow baskets. I love baskets made from anything that once grew but I've tried albeit briefly to fashion something that resembles a basket and the result was laughable - and I'm normally good with my hands and do lots of tricky crafty things but basketmaking has me stumped! No courses here mind, shame. I was going to attempt a soft basket last autumn from the dried stems of flag iris but the sheep ate them all  :roflanim:


It looks so easy when you see an expert at work, but the reality is different!  I didn't realise sheep eat flag leaves - that's a great way of stopping them taking over.  We had some in our pond but it was the geese that ate them (they don't grow everywhere here as they do further north).  Don't give up - get a book, watch a you tube clip or three and try again, and you too can have a wonky basket to love  ;D
www.scothebs.co.uk

Do something today that your future self will thank you for - plant a tree

Draco dormiens nunquam titillandus - let sleeping dragons lie

Anke

  • Joined Dec 2009
  • St Boswells, Scottish Borders
Re: Seed orders for 2020
« Reply #43 on: February 04, 2020, 03:52:03 pm »

No, not really. But I use module trays on my propagator in the house and then in the Keder to grow on, before planting outside, covered under fleece. Most of my early plantings are also under cover (coriander, early beetroot, broad beans, spinach -but that goes outside as well a little later. It is all just trial and error - we can have a late frost, but usually dampness and wind is more of an issue.

Tomatoes, chilli peppers, squash, courgettes are under the grow light for a little while, in the house before migrating to Keder, and then covered EVERY night with several layers of fleece, removed during the day.

Thanks for that.  I use a heated propagator for germination - tomatoes, chilli peppers etc.  I like to get things going early but am aware of lack of light hours.  Can you tell me more about your grow light?
Later tonight, once the sparky-minded person in this house is available... sorry I just hand out the projects around here...

Briggsy from Gower

  • Joined Nov 2018
Re: Seed orders for 2020
« Reply #44 on: February 05, 2020, 10:56:35 am »
Thanks for that.  I use a heated propagator for germination - tomatoes, chilli peppers etc.  I like to get things going early but am aware of lack of light hours.  Can you tell me more about your grow light?
[/quote]

Not sure I got the insert quote thingy to work properly there, it is meant to be Gribinisaf's last quote.

This is going to sound all wrong but seems to work in my house. (South Wales)

I found that the 'sunny window ledge' quoted in all the books ends up in leggy seedlings if they need to stay in the house for more than a couple of weeks, i.e. your early toms and peppers.

I germinate my early seeds on a radiator, then as soon as the first are up move them to a north facing window. They seem to grow quite cheerfully there.

No propagator, no artificial lights.

They do not get the extremes of temperature experienced in a sunny window, which toms hate and the seedlings do not get leggy. They do not seam to suffer from the lower light levels. I've done this for the last three years and so far so good, nice sturdy little plants move out to the polytunnel.

 

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