Monday, 16 May 2011

In the glasshouse, and raindrops in the garden

My number one chore for this weekend was cleaning out the glasshouse. Saturday was perfect weather-wise, so I dragged everything outside, got out the hose and let it rip. I washed down the walls, blasted the spiders and scrubbed away the cobwebs. (Fortunately there was no repeat of this incident.) Everything dried nicely in the sun, and I spent the rest of the afternoon putting it back in and arranging it. By the time I was done the light was no good for taking photos, so I took these on Sunday morning. Of course, by then it was raining, so just ignore the puddles on the floor and the foot and paw prints everywhere...

At the back left corner are two tomato plants, bravely struggling on. One is Juliet and one is Yellow Pear. Neither is particularly happy, they have both been stripped by caterpillars and I'm sure they will keel over when regular frosts set in. But in the meantime, they are producing fruit. It's a bit weak and watery but still beats a supermarket tomato!

At the back right is my mandarine, Clementine. I rather badly neglected her over summer and only recently realised (when her leaves turned black with mould) that she had a bad case of scale. So I cleaned her up and repotted her, and resolved to take better care in the future. I've also harvested two mandarins off her so far and there are about another three on there, so she is worth looking after!

Also in that corner is a chocolate cosmos, which is looking rather dead but I will trim it back, and it should emerge in spring again. And there is a pot with some tiny parsley seedlings, a pansy and a small bunch of spring onions (they are all found seedlings that were growing together in the same patch of the garden).

I built this bench out of some pallet wood and bricks. It's pretty sturdy so should withstand minor aftershocks, I think if we get another big one a toppled potting bench will be the last thing on my mind... Anyway, it is home to spare pots and saucers, a plastic bottle cloche, and some seedlings. 

On the left are onions - I had two opened packets, one red and one white. I sowed the seed thickly because I read that onion seed needs to be fresh to germinate so I figured it may or may not work. Well, every single red seed germinated and none of the white. So I'll need to find homes for about a hundred red onions come spring. Next to them is a Sunset's Red Horizon tomato, my workmate sowed some seeds as an experiment to see if they really are frost resistant. So we'll see if it survives over winter. Next to that is some broccoli, again it was old seed and every single one sprouted. Must be 30-40 of them. And next to that is a Winter Savoury seedling, that's supposed to be a perennial herb that doesn't die off over winter, but this one doesn't really want to get going at all. It's been there for a couple of months. I had to prop it with a small stick because it kept falling over. Chin up little plant!

Here is the heliotrope, also frost tender so I bring her in as well. The vanilla scent is gorgeous. Soon I'll have to bring my geraniums in as well, I lost two last year to the frost so I'll look after them a bit more this year.

After all the hosing and scrubbing I hung my gloves out to dry. Then I forgot about them, and they got a second rinse overnight.

The rain made all the autumn colours pop! This purple broccoli will be ready soon. The sad little pumpkin next to it, not so much - it needs to be harvested now, but is nowhere near ripe.

I planted mizuna at the front of the middle quarter. I was trying to go for that classic potager look of the low hedge. The mizuna is working well - I also sowed corn salad in two of the beds, to compare which looks better, but it's growing much slower. It's possible that the mizuna could go to seed in the next couple of months, so the slower growing corn salad could still win the race. Each quarter bed has a small rosemary bush in the middle which should look lovely when in flower - I'll show you pics when that happens.

And a rainbow to finish on. Next weekend I have to tidy the potting area, and the one after that I will be tidying the garden shed.  The fun never stops around here!


  1. I am looking into getting a greenhouse but I don't know much about them. Because you are at least in the same hemisphere as me I wonder if you could tell me..
    Without heating, what could I hope to grow in the GH in winter?
    The grass may keep the frost off, but it would be still very cold.
    I see you have something black on the floor.
    Does this trap heat?
    I don't know what else to ask...just tell me everything you know. LOL
    You could use my email if you wish.

  2. Probably the best thing about my glasshouse in winter is that it's a nice sheltered place to have lunch in (just ask Lui!) I will have a think about it and email you my expert advice (lol!) later, it might make a good topic for a post too :)

  3. Hi Ruth your pottager looks great, having the mizuna and marigolds around the edges makes it look so tidy (unlike mine!)Great idea making the brick shelve ideal for storing pots and things.

  4. Beautiful pictures and a beautiful garden you have.



Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...