Tuesday, May 14, 2013

How does your garden grow?

I have been putting some time into the garden - I hope it's the start of a lifetime of learning to grow food and flowers. I want to be like my Nanny and Grandad who produced a garden full of veg year after year just by habit, they knew the names of every plant ever. 

But back to me, dithering with a watering can in my pyjamas, hoodie and wellington boots, contemplating sage flowers, flowerbed dreams, our moss filled lawn, slugs, cherry blossom and cups of fresh black mint tea. 

I am hoping my garden will produce the following things to eat this year: cherries, strawberries, raspberries, tomatoes, potatoes, green beans and apples as well as the rosemary, sage, thyme, chives, basil, peashoots and lemons in the conservatory. We shall see. If I can get my dwarf beans past the slugs I will be surprised. They are growing so slowly and the vile beasts have bypassed my egg shells, coffee grounds and yeasty yoghurt pot slug traps. I like all animals except slugs. The wet weather this week is not helping.

They grow so much every day, potatoes are very satisfying for a novice like me 
The wind and rain has chucked all the blossoms to the ground but I hope the bees that were floating around it when we had the sun have pollinated them enough for cherries later 

You can't imagine the smell this makes - it's just gorgeous. Lemon tree

Next doors apple tree will give us apple pies this autumn (we have permission already granted to pick them!)
My lone strawberry plant I rescued from the old flat. The black Moroccan mint grew back from nothing, I thought it was dead! - it makes perfect tea. 
Two tomatoes and some heritage sweet peas
The inherited strawberry bed which I have hardly touched seems to be happening
My poor beans

This patch of completely shaded ground will be a flower bed soon. Some things won't work here because the fence means it will get no direct sun at all.
Inspecting a slug

Indoor herbs
Indoor peashoots to eat raw or cooked - insanely easy and quick to grow - plus they are ridiculously over priced in supermarkets
As for the house - plans are coming together - a builder is sorting the leak in what will be Mostyn's bedroom this week - and then we can start decorating his room. We have plans for some building work to make more storage upstairs and we need to get damp proofing done downstairs (possibly the most expensive and boring use of hard earned money ever) and then we can sort out the living room - which is easily the ugliest room in the house. It will happen.


  1. Aww it's looking lovely! Let us know if you find any good way of getting rid of slugs!

  2. Your basil looks so productive! I completely fail at basil for some reason :(

    Slugs - when it comes to egg shells you need massively thick cover I've discovered. I've been stashing shell for months now, fingers crossed it will be enough. If your beans aren't too big you can try making a faux bell jar out of a big clear plastic bottle (maybe those 5 litre water bottles if you can get your hands on any?)
    They say copper tape works around tubs/raised beds but I'm not sure - I tried it once and it didn't work but maybe the slugs were already hiding inside the tubs and didn't have to go near the copper tape.
    You can buy nematodes which are organic pests that burrow into slugs and eat them. They're already present in soil but you can give it a boost. http://www.allotment.org.uk/garden-diary/36/controlling-slugs-with-nemaslug-nematodes/
    Last tip - make a little pond & encourage frogs. They'll reduce the population a little.

    1. God that is brilliant about the plastic bottles! - why didn't I think of that!? Will try it - another bean plant bit the dust last night... we have no room for a pond I don't think :(

    2. I hope it works out for you!

      If you are interested in a pond, here's a little frog pond my friend made for her garden out of a tub for inspiration. It doesn't need to be massive to attract them, or even dug in - all she had was a courtyard. http://www.flickr.com/photos/onelittlething/468852854/in/photostream
      (this was the garden size she had it in: http://www.flickr.com/photos/onelittlething/468852866/in/photostream/ )

  3. love your garden!!! i had one at my old house before we moved and i miss it all the time. i try to spruce up our balconies but its not the same :(

  4. It looks like you're doing wonderful things with it. I wish I had a garden! I dream of fruit trees and herbaceous borders...

  5. Oh to have a garden that I could grow things in... I live in a shared house so not ideal here ;(


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