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I succumbed to the temptation of scented purple pansies, now filling some of my baskets.  I had actually gone to buy some seaweed plant feed, because my seedlings aren't growing very fast and I decided this might be due to a lack of oomph in the compost.  It was what was left of the Miracle grow peat free, which was a bit underpowered last year, so some seaweed feed should pep it up a bit. Tempted to get some organic chicken manure pellets as well as they were on a twofer, but I have a horrible feeling the dogs would just eat it.

I got two bags of  the new Westland West+ Peat Free, which is oddlooking fibrous stuff with what looks like wooden candyfloss in it.   Fingers crossed that it lives up to its promise of being the 'best performing peat free'.     One day I will be organised enough not to have to buy potting compost but make my own!

I also bought three bags of bulbs: one Triteleia laxa ( Koningin Fabiola ), and one Brodiaea laxa 'Queen Fabiola'.  On closer inspection, these turn out to be the same plant, but you'd really never guess that looking at the photos on the bag!  Oh well, now I have 50 of them!  I do already have some Triteleia in the garden and they are brilliant plants.  I also got 7 white gladiolus nanus, which advertised themselves as winter hardy.  I am dubious, but we'll give them a go!   If they work they will provide welcome interest in August when the garden tends to look a bit empty.

Philmophlegm and I have finally attacked the monstrous cluster of raspberries, and we now have (more or less) two rows of canes and a path rather than an area of scrub.   Hurray!   I still need to finish cleaning it up and remove nettles and other volunteers, but the worst of the work is done. This is a huge relief.

The radishes in the greenhouse are doing really well now. They have a whole bunch of leaves and are looking like proper plants rather than seedlings. Wondering whether to sow more of these!

I experimented recently with using boiling water as a weedkiller on the paved bit at the back.  In theory I like this overgrown and looking a bit wild, but in practice, too much grass and large persistent weeds have now got into it and it's become a bit of a mess.   The boiling water produced a very green smell, like boiling spinach, and now, a week or so after application, does seem to have killed off the grass and weeds.  Not sure if it's got the roots though.



( 3 comments — Leave a comment )
30th Mar, 2009 07:08 (UTC)
I tried digging under my compost heap to see if there was any compost. There was, but it seemed a bit undigested - and worse - contained at least one laval creature. Being a newbie gardener, I'm not sure if that is normal.

I'll try the boiling water thing. I have plenty of persistant weeds cracking the concrete in my yard.
30th Mar, 2009 08:22 (UTC)
Undigested and larval things is fine if you are just planning to use it as soil improver and haven't composted anything too evil like roots of perennial weeds, but it does suggest that the heap is not getting hot enough to make really nice fine compost from the more chunky stuff.

Assuming that the heap is not simply too small for hot composting, and is not too dry, if you can get hold of a bucket of fresh horse manure, that should get it going. Or you can wee on it, that works too, though it may take a bit longer and need a few more applications...
30th Mar, 2009 08:23 (UTC)
Forgot to say, if you can borrow one of the screw-type garden shredders, then woody stuff that has been through one of those with a bit of wee on it, composts like the blazes, I had a heap that got charred in the middle after composting shredded hedgecuttings one year.
( 3 comments — Leave a comment )

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December 2020


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