Friday, June 15

At least that's one job less!

One problem that we usually have when planting seeds directly on the plot is keeping them watered. Well this hasn't been a problem this year and in spite of the awful weather the seeds have germinated well.

The first seeds directly planted were the parsnips which now look like this.
They are just developing their first lot of true leaves which will change shape as the plant grows larger. I have a section of my website that describes the parsnip lifecycle - it's here if you are interested.

The second lot of seeds were the carrots. You may remember that last year we had a carrot disaster mainly caused by the carrots growing so slowly in the dry conditions that they were smothered by the faster growing weeds. (Why is it that weeds manage to grow whether it is dry, wet, hot or cold?) Being under the protective enviromesh we failed to keep a close enough eye on them. To be fair we were too busy ferrying watering cans about trying to prevent plants from shrivelling up.

This year in an attempt to prevent a repeat we have sown carrot seeds in channels cut into weed control fabric.
This bed was then covered with enviromesh to try and keep out the carrot fly.
You may notice that the enviromesh is in two parts as we sowed some seeds later without the weed control - just in case the first lot of carrots were unhappy! We really can't be without home grown carrots for a second year!

So far the carrots are doing well.
The radish and spring onions have also germinated. I was surprised at how quickly the spring onions came through as usually for some reason they can be a bit of a challenge.

We haven't forgotten the bees and have sown a mixture of meadow type flowers. The mixture has various hardy annuals and also seeds from packets supplied for the purpose of creating a bee/butterfly type meadow effect. The seeds have been sown in shallow drills of compost. Really the compost is just being used to demarcate the lines of flowers seeds and the weeds so I can hoe between them. All  sorts of varieties of seedling have germinated. I may have to transplant some where they are in too thick a clump.
We have also sown beetroot and garden peas but so far there is no sign of activity above soil level - then again they were only sown a day or two ago!

If you are interested in vegetable life cycles I have written about quite a lot of vegetable lifecycles on my website here. Just scroll down the page the find the links.

By the way - don't forget to enter the flower competition here After this there will only be one more chance to win a Field Guide.

10 comments:

  1. Weather conditions are a constant challenge. This is why I'm always suspicious of the recommended sowing and harvesting times you see published on seed packets. They really can only be a very rough guide. The gardener has to develop a sense of judgement!
    It's interesting to see the lengths you have gone to this year to ensure a good supply of carrots. Many people would not be prepared to put in that much work.

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    1. You have to use common sense don't you Mark? There is the microclimate of your area to take into consideration too.

      Nothing is too much trouble to have your own carrots! If people who show them can put in all the work that they do to show then it's not to much trouble to go to to eat them!

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  2. You have only just sown peas?? That makes me hopeful!!. My parsnips are ready to be transplanted into he ground but my carrots have barely germinated this year so I think I am going for a second sowing down the same line...of course then they will all germinate but lets face it you can never have too many carrots!!

    Everything is looking good...hope your beetroot ge3rminates soon.

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    1. We sowed some earlier too Tanya. These were in pots - the first lot we pulled up as they were pathetic. The second lot is waiting to be planted. We sowed some last week and we will sow more so maybe we will get some that crop. We're sowing mpre braod neans and French beans direct too.

      And I agree you can never have too many carrots! (the flipping slugs have still managed to mow off some seedlings so we may resow in the patches!

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  3. Looking good, I don't think you'll be without again this year. Your direct sowings are doing much better than mine, in fact, I haven't even sown the parsnips yet, I don't know if I'll be too late now.

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    1. I'd sow some parsnips, Jo - what's to lose? - ours are only small and if the weather bucks up they could grow away quickly. Get some in whislt the soil is damp. Then again if we have a decent September and October they can make up for lost time at the end of the season too.

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  4. I too am very impressed with your carrot efforts. I am hopeless at growing carrots, if something doesn't eat the seedlings and they happen to grow a few true leaves, and the blackbirds don't scratch them up, and they aren't 'weeded'by Mr 2 then i almopst certainly get bored waiting for them to develop properly and invariably pick them way too early. Hope yours get to a beautiful size.

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    1. Oh so do I Liz - I love fresh carrots

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  5. Your carrots are looking good. In Northern Ireland we're getting lots of wind and rain. The wind just batters the plants. My poor pumpkin may be a lost cause. Gardening isn't easy!

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    1. Wind is very much an arch enemy Kelli! Gardening certainly isn't easy which is why so many newbies give up once they realise this.

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