Sunday, 3 February 2013

Finally my Fingers were in the Soil!

Well I managed to get out and rummage in the soil! Oh it felt so good to be in the potting shed with my windup radio and dancing around whilst seed sowing to keep warm.

First job was to layout the seed potatoes to chit. As you can see they have already started. They are Pentland Javelin first early. I grew these last year and I'm sure they were a good cropper. I am going into town this coming week and will hopefully pick up some more seed potatoes. I am not sure what variety but it will depend on what the shops have in stock.

The second job I got done was to make up my salad box to go on the windowsill in my kitchen.

I added some polystyrene for drainage
I filled it with compost and sowed some mixed Oriental salad leaves. These are cut and come again leaves and will give a good supply of different leaves to add to our salad and sandwiches. I have also sown a small tub of cress.

Patiently waiting for something green to appear

I then sowed some broad beans into toilet roll inners. I had two varieties so I have sown nine of Witkiem-Manita which are a fast maturing crop of high yielding short fat pods and are ideal for freezing. The other variety is Aquadulce Claudia. These are also a high yielding variety with longer pods and also ideal for freezing.
preparing toilet rolls for broad beans
I found that an old funnel used for adding salt to a dishwasher is excellent for filling up toilet rolls for seed sowing. I have used the fish boxes to add extra insulation to the broad beans and the basil that I also sowed. I have three varieties of basil and have sown two pots of each. Franchi-Sementi, Basilico Bolloso Napolentano and Basilico Violetto Aromatico.

I also sowed some early onward peas, and a variety of peppers. A hot slim chilli pepper and California wonder, a sweet bell pepper. The peppers were also placed in a fish box and all the seeds have been placed in the greenhouse and have been covered with plastic sheeting.

Hopefully something will germinate!
I was bought this herb growing set for Christmas. You get these soil pellets that you add water to and they expand. I have added the water but as yet nothing has happened.

 I will check it again tomorrow and if nothing has happened I will throw out these pellets and fill with my compost. I like the look of the set and it seems a shame not to use it.

And finally I sowed a trough of carrots that has been placed in the greenhouse. Whether they will grow, we shall have to wait and see.

Whilst I was pottering about I let the girls out. They do make me laugh as they serenely step out of the run to then waddle and flap and try to take flight over to the raised bed and fruit border. Matilda is looking a picture of health compared to a few months ago when I thought I was going to loose her. She is the first to nestle down in the soil for a good bath.

I cleaned out the coop and then lead them back in to the run with handfuls of seeds and corn. I had to then sweep all the path as they had scattered the stones everywhere whilst they were searching for grubs.

Before I came in I thought I would go and dig up my parsnips.

Not impressed with this little lot but at least something grew. I will not be growing them again as they have to be in the ground for such a long time and then amount to nothing and to be honest I am the only one that likes  parsnips, it is less hassle and cheap for me to buy a couple from the supermarket.

I thought I would leave the digging for another day, my leg is not good today and I have a busy week ahead so I don't want to make it any worse than it is already, damn thing! I did however take a peek under the weed membrane that I put down at the end of the last growing season and some of the compost from the bins has still not broken down so it will need a good and thorough digging. I might have to call in dad to give me a hand of even get Jay to get the electric rotivator out and do it for me.

Well that is it from me for another day, I hope you enjoyed being with me in the potting shed today. I am now going to do a bit of baking, a chocolate sponge and some shortbread biscuits. Until next time x


  1. What a productive day. I got bought a herb set for Christmas too, I haven't got it out the box though yet. The funnel is a great idea to fill up the toilet rolls, I'll have to remember that tip. I like the thought of salad leaves growing on the kitchen windowsill, I may have to start some off myself.

  2. HI Jo, It was so good to be playing away in the potting shed.

    I usually have a salad box by the back door, but thought I would get some growing earlier by having it growing in the kitchen, especially with the cost of salad bags and using salad everyday it does work out quite a bit.

  3. brilliant idea about the funnel,I grow my sweet peas in toilet rolls and always end up with compost everywhere.

    1. Hi Flowerlady, thanks for dropping by. It is the simple things that are the best!

      I had been using the funnel for transferring Diactemous Earth from a large tub to a powder puff bottle and had a lightbulb moment.


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