Sunday 13th March 2022 – Getting the whole family involved.

About 10 days ago I had another 5 bags of top soil arrive. This is usually an annual thing, I like to get it in before the end of the financial year as it’s an expense for work. The soil in the raised beds always drops slightly during the year, it’s just something that it does, but eventually I won’t need to get any more. Each bag weighs about a ton, so that’s a lot of soil for one person to move on their own. George is at university so got away with it this year, but with Mark and I shovelling into the barrow, Emily wheeling the barrow and then with the help of Kai tipping the soil into the bed and then Kai raking it about we were working like a very well oiled machine. We got the first 2 bags done within about half an hour, and then sat down for a little light refreshment, and then did the last 3 bags. We started at 10.30am and were finished by just gone noon. I didn’t think that we’d get them all done by lunchtime, I was hoping to get about 3 done, so that was brilliant. Well done team Woodside Barn!!

Lunch was tomato soup and French bread, and then a little telly before I was back out in the garden again. Just as we were finishing off the last bag of soil there were a few spit spots of drizzle but that didn’t bother us, but later in the afternoon the drizzle got a little heavier. This didn’t bother me as I was in the greenhouse sowing just a few more vegetable seeds and then a load of flower seeds. So here goes….

Now I thought I’d sown all the veg seeds that needed to be started off in the greenhouse, but one of my client’s got some free seeds off a magazine and very kindly gave them to me. Some I already have so will wait until next year, but I sowed these ones today: Swiss Chard “Fordhook Giant”, Leek “Elefant” and Celery “Green Sleeves”. All these I sowed in the same way by firming down some compost and then watering it, wait for the water to drain through and then sprinkle on the seeds, cover with more compost and water again, label and put a propagator lid over the top. Always water freshly sown seeds with tap or freshly caught rain water, when they’re larger then you can use butt water. The reason for this is because butt water has usually been sitting for a while and may be a little stagnant. Think of seeds like babies they need a little extra special care when they’re really tiny, but when they get older they can play quite safely in the dirt.

Here’s a video for sowing Leeks, but just to the same for the other seeds.

Now let’s move onto the flowers. I’ve not sow all the flower seeds I have yet, but I’ve made a good start. I think I’ve done all the seeds I have in packets, but I have a load of seeds drying in the garage from last year that I still need to sow. I expect I’ll do those next weekend or the early part of the following week, but when I do I’ll let you know.

All these seeds need to be sown on damp compost and then covered in a little more compost and watered again. As they grow I’ll take photos and show you have they’re getting on. So off we go…Papaver “Red Field Poppy”, Cottage Garden plants “Woodland Flower Mix”, Moraea Huttonii, Penny Royal, Love in a Mist “Persian Jewels Mixed“, Lavendula “Hidcote Blue”, two varieties of California Poppy “Carmine King” and “Single Mixture”, Papaver “Orientale Pizzicato”, Throw and Grow “Summer Picking Flowers” and a selection of Wildflowers from California which Mark got for me when he went to LA in the mixture are Poppy, Columbine (Aquilegia), Tidy Tips (don’t know what these are), Penstemon, Primose, Coneflower, Bluebell, and various other plants. It’s only available in the USA so unless you live there or visit you won’t be able to get any. I also sowed some Nasturtiums “Tall Single Flowered”, but I sowed 4 seeds per square pot. Don’t sow the seeds together, make sure you sow them a little way apart from each other. Just push the seeds in the compost about half and inch and then cover with a propagator lid as the mice will dig them up.

By the time I’d finished all those it was about 5.30pm and time to start dinner. We’d all worked very hard today, I doubt if I’ll ache tomorrow, as I’m used to doing heavy work with my arms but the others might feel the burn.

Whatever you’re doing this week I hope you have a wonderful time. If you are able to get and play out with your plants enjoy yourself.

Take care and see you soon xxx

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1 Response to Sunday 13th March 2022 – Getting the whole family involved.

  1. NebraskaDave says:

    Claire, I’m glad to see that you got some help and I’m impressed that you got it done so quickly. I buy my soil in 50-pound bags and use much less that you do. I blend my soil with peat moss which some gardeners won’t due to environmental concerns. I also blend in a five gallon bucket of compost, a good sized scoop of perlite, and an 18 oz glass of Epsom salts. I use a big compost tumbler to mix the soil blend together. I use this mixture in all my raised beds and five gallon bucket garden.

    I finally got my onions to sprout. I couldn’t get them to sprout in seed starting mix and after two weeks on two out 72 sprouted. I took the remaining onion seeds and sprinkled them onto a wet paper towel and zipped them up in a Ziploc bag. I placed them on a towel seed side down and put a couple magazines on top to keep the seeds in contact with the moist paper towel. Wala, five days later, sprouts everywhere. I took the sprouts and planted them in my onion trainers made out of PVC pipe. So this morning the little sprouts are starting to peak up through the soil after 2 days. So now onions are on the way to harvest. The onion seed was three years old and I’ve been told that onion seed doesn’t germinate to well after a year or so.

    Now I’m looking to bell peppers and cabbage.

    Have a great day playing in the garden dirt.

    Nebraska Dave
    Urban Farmer

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