Growing Up To Speed – End of March Update!

So it’s only been about 4 weeks or so since we sowed our first seeds, started planting and things are really starting to happen!

  • Beans we grew from seed, spent a week in the greenhouse and are doing well in the garden.
  • Beans we sowed straight into the garden around the same time have finally come through (we were wondering!), though they are way behind the ones we planted indoors.
  • Brussels seedlings are arising out of their toilet rolls 🙂
  • Carrots & cucumber are poking through in the window planter.
  • Sweetcorn, zucchini & broccoli are going great guns indoors and have gone straight to big paper pots in the greenhouse.
  • Kale, lettuce & leeks maturing nicely in the greenhouse.
  • Spinach and raspberries taking root nicely in the big bins having been transplanted from my partners allotment. I wont be buying any more spinach this year 🙂
  • Mint in the chimney pot and and lemon balm in the pallet planter are coming back again nicely from last year. Both make an luuurvley cuppa tea 🙂

Paper Seedling Plant Pots

What a nifty little trick my lovely partner shared with me today. Making these paper planters for those seedlings that are crying out for more soil and space. And it is super easy to do! Tear or cut a standard newspaper in half then fold the newspaper pages in half again. Roll the folded paper around a jar and press in the ends and hey presto, uno paper plant pottio!

Pallet Potting Boxes

Who would have thoughts making these humble boxes would have been sooo satisfying. I’m not sure whether it’s the simplicity of the shape, or the contrast of the colours or some other factor I’ve yet to discover. With so many seeds coming on and in need of bigger pots, these pallet boxes turned out to be perfect for the job. Not doubt there will be countless other uses for them as the season roles on too.

Sowing Seeds!

It’s that time of year.. at least that’s what all my growing books, videos and partner tell me! Getting busy with it, hundreds of seeds going in of all types and variety.. no doubt this will lead to utter carnage later in the year, but hey, life is for living! And we shall learn a lot this year.

Beans Are Up!

I’ve not done any real gardening before so this year will be a first attempt at planting en-masse! What can possibly go wrong??! The first beans are coming up nicely, so far so good 🙂

Raised Bed Pallet Planter

I have 100 or so little lettuce seedlings coming through right now and I’m imagining what this raised pallet planter is going to look like when they’re in full bloom… will save my back too!! Ooooooo 😉

Pallet Fence

When the brambles get too much and you’re on a budget, a pallet fence is a great solution to protect the allotment..

And when there is no mallet or sledgehammer in sight, one is forced to improvise!

Pallet fence post bashing!

Making Growing Beds

The hardest bit about yoga is getting to the end of mat! At least that’s what they say! Once you’re there, dialing into an hour or so of yoga comes fairly naturally, especially if you’re in a class.. as it’s unlikely you’re going to walk out half way through.

The hardest aspect of making growing beds for me was getting the spade out and breaking the ground for the first time. Chrissie and I had been talking about growing veg in the front garden for a long time and were about to go for a walk, probably to talk about it some more, but this time I impulsively grabbed the spade from it’s box and pushed it into the ground. The rest is history, and needless to say, we never went on a walk that day!

The bulk of the work took about 2 weekends but of course we’ve been pottering since. Below are some pic of our progress turning a lumpy, grassy, neglected front garden into 3 growing beds and a stone path to stay off all the mud. A very rewarding project that’s for sure. The last pic shows me planting our first seeds .. those being broad beans 🙂

Scrumping Apples!

I used to get into a lot of trouble for doing this as a kid! So I have an office at the Environment Centre Swansea and not 10 yards away is a tiny apple tree with branches breaking under the shear weight of the fruit being produced. I knocked on the owners door and asked if they would like some help picking them. They told me to help myself, I could take them all, they didnt want any at all. Not even an apple tart in return.

So armed with buckets and ladders, Riz and I climbed into the tree and started scrumping for a long afternoon. The harvest was fruitful to say the least! Enough to give loads to friends and make a stockpile of stewed apple I’m still working my way through