Tuesday, 30 October 2012

Packing up for winter

The weather here has got cold and wet, well it never really got dry this year. I did go down the plot yesterday and did a little digging. I also trimmed some trees that were over hanging the seating area. I will have to have a bonfire soon but need to wait for it to dry out. Weather forecast on the right says it's going to be dry all week so hopefully by Friday it will be dry enough.

I spent today packing up the green house with bubble wrap. Not an easy job and even worse when you can't take everything out first. I still can't figure out how you are supposed to attach the bubble wrap to the ends, I mean they give you these stupid plastic things which go in the runner but there isn't one at the ends, so how are you supposed to do it. I have used some tape that I was encouraged to buy last year when I got the bubble wrap but that ends up leaving white marks on my glass. Would be simple if it was a wood framed greenhouse. In my old on, which I wish I had repaired rather than replaced with a metal one, I just used to use drawing pins. That was so easy. Although I have to say whist trawling internet sites last year I'm sure I came across someone who put their bubble wrap on the outside. That would be easy but I don't know how well it would work. It would be great if we could just shrink wrap the whole thing. Mmm, that gives me an idea, could I get away with wrapping cling film around it? Pound shop time I think.

I still need to mow my lawn, it's got quite high, but it's been too wet and I still haven't got round to pruning or planting. I have decided that I no longer want my Weeping Cherry tree. It's not too big so it could be dug up and given a new home somewhere. I want to get the one that grows upwards instead of outwards, although it only comes in white flowers. There are a few more plants I want to get but I will start looking around for them next year now.

I keep forgetting to take photos, sorry. Between gardening, work and the dog I often forget to update the blog, there is also Fizz's blog (the dog) and FaceBook to update too, although I will never Tweet, leave that for the birds. I'm still trying to source things for the plot as cheaply as possible. I am still on the look out for more pallets and thin I may have found some. I intend to make a bug hotel next year, putting it behind the compost bays (my plot is getting longer & longer). This is what it is supposed to look like


I can't guarantee mine will look this good, in fact it definitely won't. But I will try to remember to take photos (unless it's really bad). I'm not sure how far in all this stuff is supposed to go, if it's just around the outside or if it's supposed to go all the way into the middle. I am hoping to get more slow worms and this time get a photo of them for Sue over at Green Lane as she said she had never seen one at her plot.

Monday, 22 October 2012

I took the dog for a walk today. The weather is very misty and damp so I din't bother to go to the plot. It should be ok down there. So I took some photos of the woods we went to. It was originally part of the forest that ran from London down to the coast, but like everything, most of it has been lost. This part had been used to grow conifers, now the National Trust has taken it over they are cutting down the old fir trees and re-planting our native trees. So I decided to take some photos of the firs before they are gone.





Friday, 19 October 2012

Rain

Wet, wet, wet, not the group but the weather down here at the moment. It is bucketing down, the little river is almost over flowing, the plots are covered in mud and only the stupid ventured down, oh yes, that was me. I got soaked, my feet were floating in my shoes and my coat (wool) is twice as heavy.

At last I made it back to B & Q to pick up the polystyrene trays the lady said she would put aside for me. Something for free. I have used them in between the pallets to hope fully make my compost heap retain heat. I have read different methods on other blogs on how to make a hot heap, I read you need to use paving slabs on the bottom then make your walls thick to retain heat, this should make the micro-organisms work rather than worms. Well I haven't quite done this, I put plastic on the bottom and only 3 walls have been insulated, we will see if it helps. I also put black plastic on the sides to help heat it up when the sun shines (laugh hysterically).


I decided it was time to harvest my pumpkins and butternut squash, I don't think they are going to ripen in this weather so have brought them home and put them in the greenhouse.


The upside is that my cabbages are doing really well, I'm not sure if they are summer or winter ones, will have to find the packet and have a look. The celery is still very small, don't know if they are going to produce much. There is one courgette left, the plant has had enough, and so have I. I don't have a clue how to cook it or what to put it in. Only going to grow one plant next year.


Lets hope next year is great growing weather, I want lots of carrots and beetroot. I also need to get some parsnip seeds, I love parsnips and haven't got any this year.

So over the winter I will need to work out what I'm going to plant and get everything ready for the new season. Next year I may be able to record my harvests too.

Oh I nearly forgot, I took video of my river.

Tuesday, 9 October 2012

Autumn

I hate this time of the year. The leaves are dropping and the plants are going to sleep. That's how I feel too. The days are getting even shorter and the weather is miserable. It's not been a very good year at all, well it was ok to start with but then hurting my knees meant I couldn't put everything into the plot. I suffer from S. A. D. that's seasonal affective disorder, normally it only sets in at this time of the year but it's been so miserable all year that it's been there in the background all the time. I have tried to keep myself as busy as I could, but there were days when that was difficult to do. Sometimes I wish I could hibernate, but I do like snow, maybe it reflects enough of the sunlight to help me.

It will be Halloween soon, I have a couple of pumpkins which are now turning orange, they should be ready by the end of the month. I picked a couple of the butternut squash too but they aren't ready and I do hope they turn just like pumpkins do. I have never grown them before so I don't know what to expect from them. I will definitely start them off earlier next year as they didn't get chance to ripen, maybe that was just due to the weather, lets hope it's better next year.

I forgot to take photos today, I spent 2hrs on the plot. I took down my beans and put them on the compost heap. Wandered down to see the bees (there are 2 more hives there now), they haven't visited me since I moved the blue box, maybe they don't like it now. I did get another head of calabrese and the cabbages are doing very well, maybe a little too well. I don't like cabbage so I have no idea what I'm going to do with it all. The celery is tiny, don't think anything is going to come of that now.

I need to try and get on with things down there now, the weeds are going to slow down their growth so I should have time to do the digging and clear up. I still need to get a shed but finances are very short at the moment. The subs are due by the end of this month, thank goodness they are only £10. I have read on some other blogs they are being charged nearly 10 times this.

Monday, 8 October 2012

Free Kindle

The free kindle app is here, for those who don't have a kindle you can download the app free of charge, that way you can read the book in the last post for free on your PC, iPhone etc.

I like free stuff, so hurry.

http://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/feature.html/ref=kcp_ipad_mkt_lnd?docId=1000425503

Sunday, 7 October 2012

Free book alert!!!

Quick whilst it's still free. Kindle book from Amazon, free to download. The  Vertical Garden  


  http://www.amazon.co.uk/The-Vertical-Gardening-Guidebook-ebook/dp/B009DADXLQ/ref=sr_1_14?ie=UTF8&qid=1349637204&sr=8-14

Or for those of you in USA 
 http://www.amazon.com/Vertical-Gardening-Guidebook-Beautiful-ebook/dp/B009DADXLQ

I haven't read it yet so I don't know how good it is but it's free so it can't hurt to have a read.