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Showing posts from April, 2013

Rooko's May Top 10 Tryouts & Tips

1. Now that plants are starting to grow due to warmer soil conditions try adding some general purpose fertilizer to flower borders and around other established plants.

2. If you are intending to sow a new lawn this year, May is probably the last month to do it in most parts of U.K.

3. If you grow fruit trees, remove any suckers as soon as they appear.

4. Light & sunlight are very important factors when growing vegetables, most need about 6 hours per day for healthy growth. Lettuce, Peas, Carrots, Kale & Chard will tolerate shady conditions. Fruit bearing vegetables such as Tomatoes, Squashes and Peppers need full sun.

5. If you are growing Carrots this season do not sow them near to Strawberries, Tomatoes or Grapes which can have a negative effect on the Carrots growth.

6. If your garden or allotment soil is still cold and wet do not add any mulch to it, as this will only cause mould and disease to start.

7. Onion tip. When you are preparing Spring onions for a meal, normally…

Growing, Sowing, Lifting and Shifting

Some time ago I decided that my tired old front lawn and driveway needed renewing, so what better time to start than in the middle of the busy sowing and planting season on the allotments. A week ago yesterday I lifted the first of the concrete paving slabs which formed a footpath, alongside the tarmac driveway, stacking it and the remainder of the slabs on the tarmac just clear of the garage door. Then it was time to remove the lawn, which was chopped into easy to lift pieces of turf. (funny that transition). The turf was then loaded (sometimes overloaded) into the back of my car and transported to my allotment where it is now stacked on one of my compost heaps, until it has broken down sufficiently to be added to my plots. Two and a half days later the lawn and most of the topsoil had been transported to my plots. By Wednesday of last week the remaining topsoil and subsoil was being barrowed to my back garden and deposited around the flower beds, with the better quality topsoil bei…

Busy (Not The Honey Bees Though)

My last post was 9 days ago and things have been very busy for me since then. The weather has been perfect for seed sowing many vegetable seeds, outside, during the past week or so, here in Taunton. Last Tuesday and today were exceptionally sunny and warm, although the persistent westerly wind is keeping temperatures lower than they would be, without it. Having visited my plots for many hours during the past week or so, with several evenings taken up checking out germinating seeds in my new poly tunnel, my blogging time has been severely curtailed. Having just read through most of the latest blog posts on my blog and following lists, (hopefully I will get chance to comment on them this weekend), one or two topics are well mentioned recently. The weather of course, mainly referring to the effects of the persistent wind seems to be one main topic. Everyone seems to be taking advantage of the warmer weather, enjoying sowing and planting a varied collection of seeds and plants, all of wh…

Still Digging (Part 11)!!
Fait Accompli

 I'm sure I heard a distinct sigh of relief from my garden fork at 2-30 p.m. last Friday, as I turned the last fork full of soil on the central bed of N2 Plot, thus completing the Dandelion clearing, hopefully for the foreseeable future. I first started clearing this bed last October and I can honestly say it will be the last time I attempt to clear such a badly weed infested allotment area by digging it over. Some unforeseen delays and of course delays caused by our Winter weather didn't help the cause but now I have a full bed of main crop Potatoes planted where there was once only Dandelions and a few other perennial weeds. One advantage of the cold Winter and so far Spring, has been the lack of germination of weeds on the rest of my plots, whilst I have been working on N2 Plot. Although it looks as though Spring has finally arrived here in Somerset I decided to erect a poly tunnel at the weekend. If future Winters and Springs are to be as cold as this years, then a poly t…

Rooko's April Top 10 Tryouts & Tips

Sorry for the later than normal posting of this months tips but due to the continuing wintery U.K. weather conditions many gardeners are being delayed with their monthly to do lists so far this month.
1. Although weather conditions for the U.K. are supposed to improve next week, if you have access to snow free planting areas it is still a good idea to cover them with plastic sheeting, cardboard, cloches or other materials to help the soil warm more quickly, if we get some sun that is. (Lidl are currently selling cheaply priced cloches).
2. We are still experiencing heavy overnight frosts here in Somerset, so any planting areas that require digging or rotavating will benefit from the frosts action, helping to kill bugs and break down the soils surface.
3. Easter weekend was the traditional time to start planting Potatoes in U.K. If you are planting them in cold soil conditions they will stay dormant under approximately (40 F) (4.4C).
4. If you are growing plants from seed indoors, chec…