Another page in your (gardening) diary

This afternoon we put in another couple of rows of onions and garlic which we got from Shannon’s the other week so they can happily overwinter (or they’ll only sit in our seed tin until next spring). In the bed (above) where once stood a greenhouse many moons ago and where now the Thompson & Morgan trial sunflower and tomatoes are still hanging on, we put in one row each of Autumn Champion (white) and Electric Red onions.

And near to the house we put in an extra row of Marco garlic that’ll get a good bit of the sun because of the position of the bed. To the left of the picture can just be seen the newly bit of lawn we sowed around the August Bank Holiday. A few weeks previously we took up all of the 1970’s crazy paving that was doing nothing but attracting weeds in between its cracks. With all this late gardening action we can’t wait to see the results next year. Roll on next spring!

Do we know (where we put) our onions?

We’re great at forgetting when and where we sow/plant things and after telling someone that the other day, they suggested we keep a gardening diary or “you could even start a blog, you’ll enjoy that”. Oh dear, we didn’t have the heart to tell them we’ve been doing one for a few years!

Well, we’re making a fresh start and from today logging everything plantwise we buy and also where we put it/them. This morning seen us buying some garlic, red and white onion sets to be put in for over the winter from our favourite garden centre Shannon’s. If all goes well we’ll clear some space this weekend and whack them in. You will be informed (complete with the actual date, time and location co-ordinates)!

The path to enlightenment

We don’t usually give it large regarding what we’ve done in the garden but with Sunday’s great weather (granted it was on and off but when it was “on” it was great) we made a bit of progress with a lot of outstanding jobs and we’re well chuffed!

The bed on the right-hand side had gone out of control, the comfrey was choking everything (including the dahlias, red hot poker and even the rosemary) and the path was fast disappearing. On the pic above after the hard graft you can now see a couple of the sunflowers, one being nearly 7ft high! We’re suckers for those adverts in E-bay that say “Giant skyscraper Sunflowers that will reach 20 ft at least, as grown in Jack and the Beanstalk” and that sort of thing.

Even the anarchy that is the veg bed at the bottom of the garden was tidied up (a bit). This is it post hoeing and de-weeded. There’s broad beans, dwarf french beans, runner beans, beetroot and even a courgette.

We’ve even had a harvest, the above is some spuds we got from Shannon’s earlier this year. We’ve been chomping at the bit to dig them up and this is the first time a bit of patience has paid off (they are a decent size for once). The cherry tomatoes we got from them too from seed are starting to ripen too and the plants are just not stopping so a bit of nipping out of the top had to be done. It’s good this gardening lark (when it goes well!)

 

 

Saturday morning cardoons

A year or so ago we bought a couple of cardoon plants at Shannon’s and stuck them at the bottom of the garden and duly forgot about them. We didn’t know much about them when we bought them (and still don’t know much now) but we do know we love the wild and whacky. This year has seen some mad growth spurts in the plants and now some mad thistle type heads. Reminds us of our punk days back in the seventies! #gardeningsnotdead

Back yard reportage 1

A belated Happy Solstice to one and all! It was a shame we couldn’t get Ken Barlow, Jamie Reid or Arthur Pendragon (they were busy elsewhere) in our garden first thing yesterday to give the plants added help with a blessing or two but we have the next best thing, a bucket of home-made Comfrey Liquid (with added borage and nettle leaves) ponging away nicely!

It’s been such a boost (we use it diluted, 10 parts water to every 1 part of the dark stinky liquid on a weekly basis) all over the garden especially the various poppies that are coming up now after we used the “throw em randomly and see” method of distribution from seeds obtained from Shannon’s, ebay or off a seed swap or two. A few years ago we were into how many types of mint we could find, now we’ve moved onto poppies!

We mention Comfrey liquid, yesterday we passed on a bottle of the said pongy stuff to Honor Oak Park train station to add some weight to their entry in the annual “Station in bloom” contest. We gave them an accompanying set of instructions ‘Warning this stuff smells (think of  body odour and times it by twenty), apply once a week diluted 10 to 1 very early in the morning or you will lose customers!” Best of luck to them!

In for a penny, in for a pond

There’s eight fish in there, go on count em! We’re so glad those eight goldfish are still alive as we haven’t seen much signs of life over the last few months. The water has been well cloudy as the pond pump went for a burton earlier this year but one has just been ordered so normal service will resume soon.

To add to that, we spotted the Lewisham Heron on Good Friday evening on the roof of the prefabs behind our garden. It has been making regular visits to the neighbourhood of late so we feared for the worse. The picture below taken earlier this year gives you some idea of what we’re dealing with. Look closely for the pterodactyl type thing standing motionless on the edge of the pond!

And here it is again giving it the freeze frame business on the fence, there’s no stopping the thing. Thank god we stuck the pea wire obtained from Shannon’s over the pond or the goldfish (bought from Lewisham’s Number 1 pet shop!) would now be goners!

A foxtail lily and New York City

We’re expecting some cold conditions this weekend in London town (with a possible low of 1 degree) so the cloches and covers are still in place in the garden. The terrarium found in the street many moons ago is nearly being lifted off by the foxtail lily growing inside it (post from February here). We don’t want to take it off yet just in case. Look closely and you can even see the flower stem ready to reach up to the sky, and it’s not even Easter yet!

Now here’s a mad tune for a Friday night, very New York 80’s sounding, think New Order, Jah Wobble and ESG. This is one big tune! It’s off the Poli-Ritmo E.P. (available here) by Internal N.Y. Rhythms on Optimo Music and a belter it is, tribal with some added dubwise goodness! One for blaring out loud while hunting down that horticultural fleece!