The sunny days this last week could not be ignored and Johnny and I managed a few days of work outside in the garden.
Wed 11 March– Partly sunny, dry, low wind, high temp around 10°C/50°F Nice day.
-liquid seaweed fertilizer applied to ❤ -shaped herb bed, perennial bed, rhubarb patch, herb and flower corner, tractor tire planters.
-seaweed spread on pumpkin patch
Sorry, I didn’t get a picture of the good, thick, and gooey liquid seaweed before it was spread throughout the garden. This is about three weeks old. With warm enough weather, it is possible within 2-3 weeks to break down into liquid fertilizer. If the weather is cold, it takes closer to 2-3 months.
As this is a garden update, I won’t get into the details of making organic liquid seaweed fertilizer. It’s good stuff and if you can make your own, (seaweed, manure, comfrey, or nettle) it will save you money and is a better choice over store bought packaged options. Isn’t that what we are hoping to avoid by growing our own anyway?
Thurs 12 March– Sunny, dry, no wind, high temp around 10°C/50°F Beautiful day.
-rocket sown in 24″ x 18″ tray; as I write this Sunday, they have already germinated
-‘slo’ bolt coriander & sweet basil, each in 8″ pots
-‘santos’ coriander in 14″ x 12″ pot
In 2″ x 2″ cells/24 cells per tray–to be kept in house in hot press for added warmth to germinate:
-3 rows jalapeno peppers 2 seeds/cell; as I write this Sunday, they have already germinated
-3 rows purple tomatillos 3/cell x 1 row, 2/cell x 2 rows
-2 rows bambino spinach 3/cell
-2 rows bordeaux spinach 3/cell
-1 row yellow tomato ‘yoder’ 2/cell
-1 row elephant dill 3/cell
Thurs 12 March–
‘Mahonia’ planted out– I bought it last week for less than half price in the ‘plant hospital’ section of a garden center. Pictured on right, lettuce from 24 February sowing is germinating nicely.
We decided not to move our tunnel, but instead to move the tree that has been growing in it for the past two years. Thanks to Roz and Phil for that advice. We do still need to replace our weather beaten plastic, but it will be considerably less work than moving the entire structure.
The spade handle broke from lifting the tree out of the ground; fortunately we had a spare. Does this bud help identify our tree? Below are pictured wild garlic ramsoms, called ‘creamh’ (k-nav) in gaelic. They are abundant right now and we are eating them with breakfast, lunch, and dinner, no exaggeration. Their amazing garlicky goodness is addictive. They can be dried, preserved, eaten fresh-picked or cooked up in zillions of ways. Useful wherever you would otherwise use other greens or alliums. They have medicinal uses as well. The goats milk is really only good for making cheese with if they get grazing in a patch. And what wonderful cheese it is! The linked website mentioned above has loads of great ideas.
‘In early Celtic times annual garlic feasts had to be provided by the lower orders to their clan chiefs and chiefs to their kings.’ —from wildandslow.com
Fri 13 March–Sunny morning turned to overcast, dry, light wind, high temp 8°C/46°F Cold, but dry, nice day.
In 2″ x 2″ cells/24 cells per tray–
‘Batavia’ lettuce 3 seeds/cell
french leaves lettuce 3/cell
-liquid seaweed applied to potato beds
-split and transplanted red hot poker plants–from perennial bed to back yard
-pruned raspberry bushes
-put six evergreens in bed at duck pond; purchased with mahonia, were in 4″ pots
-transplanted 2 ‘saxifraga’ to rockery in second field
-transplanted pink heather to ground aside gate post closest to house
Garden Experiment–Carrots & Fertilizer: Two identical beds (16′ x 4′), using identical early cropping ‘Amsterdam Sweetheart’ seeds. Bed 1 fertilized with leaf mold and bed 2 fertilized with seaweed.
This experiment came about because we wanted to sow two beds with early carrots. Leaf mold is the recommended soil conditioner for carrots but trees are scarce on the island, therefore so is leaf mold. We did manage enough to prepare one bed though. The only other available bed to put a sowing of early carrots down was covered in fresh seaweed back in January. I asked several seasoned island gardeners their experience with seaweed and carrots (manure is a no-no as it causes carrots to fork) but they each said they had never tried it. They are now sown, with removable mini-poly tunnel coverings to protect them from the cold and give them a boost when the sun shines. *1/5 of each bed is sown with parsnips; this after running out of carrot seeds. I will update in the future.
Potatoes sown in the polytunnel at the end of December have been up for a few weeks now. These are the first to peak their heads out; most others are half the size, but looking good and should easily be ready for lifting before cucumbers go in the ground.
Hope spring is in sight wherever you are and that you are, or soon will be, getting some time in the garden too. Melissa Xx