Friday, June 23, 2006


Since my last post at the end of April things have come on leaps and bounds. June is by far the busiest month in the garden year, when I look back at last year it is no different to this year. Some of the things that have gone on (starting with the Strawberries).

Strawberries are marching on, with straw now keeping the berries off the ground it's now really down to nature to complete the job. I have added a few marigolds to help fight the garden nasties.

This is the first of my half moon borders, growing here is cabbage and sweetcorn (both from seed) bordered with marigolds (carboot); I have added french marigolds (seed) into the bed as well. I have added a log-roll border liner to both borders to finish them off. In the background is my two lemon balms, flat as a pancake through winter and now look at them!

This is the second of the half moon borders. This is my "come again" border and I have planted a group of more mature series of plants such as Lupins and Echinacea. I have a younger series in the greenhouse for planting in the autum and the seed from the lupins I will grow for autum planting as well. To help fill the border for this year I have added marigolds.

My raspberries are now forming berriers from the side laterals that sprang from last years canes, a set of canes that I planted 2 years ago (and I had thought were dead) suddenly sprang to life and as such I am going to scrap my current support system and create a new one that allows for hight. Since taking this pic I have added cane supports across some of the laterals as these are very prone to breaking and as the berries develop the weight snaps them off.

Not a great pic as the light was going on me at this point but my greenhouse is rammed to the rafters, the tomatoes were a huge success and here you can see the larger toms that were sown in march. The april toms are smaller so I am not convinced that they catch up after all and the earlier (and out of season) sowing really paid off. In total I have 13 plants with a total of 20 toms now forming, most have a mass of flowers so I should get a really good crop. One of the toms I picked up from the garden center but the rest are from seed.

I have 4 sweet basil (3 from seed), 2 lemon basil (1 from seed), cinmon basil, 7 chilli plants (seed), sweet pepper, 2 lemon grass (seed, yes I finally succeeded), lemon verbanna, 2 cucumbers and 4 peas (both from seed). I also have the odd marigold to help confuse pests. The peas have since completed the cropping and it was a lot of fun to pick and eat them right from the pod.

The potatoes are cropping well and in flower. The blackberries have cropped really well and will be ready any day. The garlic is now ready and today I earthed them up, tied and now left to dry in the greenhouse (and stinking the place out). It was a bumper crop and although it took neally 9 months it was well worth it. The beetroot cropped well and I had just enough to make a jar of pickle with them (just the thing for winter).

Shot I will sigh off with is my patio pots, towards the back is a pot of lemon tyme and mint. Since this shot was taken I have cut it down to help generate new growth and to start making use of the crop. The mint makes great tea and I intend to use the tyme dried with lemon balm, lemon basil, lemon verbanna and lemon grass to make a really fruity tea.

Some of the herbs I have mentioned I obtained as young plants, back in May I went to three counties show again (and loved it) and picked up a few herbs on my "want list". How these fair over winter (the lemon verbanna for example) might be tricky but hopefully this will be ok, it's not an easy plant to find early in the year.


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