Swelling fruits

Looking around the garden this morning, after two days of very welcome rain, everything seems to be leaping ahead now, and risk of frost is past, forecast is mild and warm so I removed the fleece from the runner beans

They have made excellent progress in their cocoons of fleece, one I will certainly try this next year

Here are some pictures taken this morning

The bean nearest the camera, with yellowy leaves, is a climbing French bean, self saved seeds from a friend. I think is suffered more than the other beans during the spell of cold winds, but seems to be perking up now

Garden Ghosts

Runners-fleeced-up-may-2017
Runner beans with fleece protection

Some ghostlike scenes in my garden at the moment, the runners have all been covered in two layers of fleece for about a fortnight. Not just for frost but we have had biting north east cold winds over that time, the fleece seems to have done the intended job and beans are still healthy and climbing

I planted out my Polestar runners, had to, they were just romping away, but the fleece will help

Also a friend gave me some Enorma runner plants, also romping away, they have just been planted out in pot of five

The begonias are a bit hit & miss, some are growing well, others just limping along. I don’t think it is suppliers, seems to mixed results from both Wilkinson & Home Bargains. However I have now palnted them out the front in large tubs, currently behind chicken mesh to stop the blooming cats digging them up & pooing there

And spotted the first lily beetle, duly squished

Frost Forecast

Had to go into prepare for trouble mode ahead today. Frost or at least Arctic winds are forecast for this area Monday / Tuesday, and my runners & French beans are outside 😦

At least the blossom on the apple trees has been out for a while, and the cherry has now set fruit, so should be OK there

I had already wrapped some fleece around some of the beans a few weeks ago, but did not do the latest plantings because late frosts are unlikely here, wrong this year maybe?

However I popped into Wilkinson’s this morning and bought some more fleece, and have now wrapped all the bean wigwams in two layers of fleece ready for the week ahead

Noticed one of my escapee strawberry plants has one lone flower on it, no idea if I will ever eat it before the slugs do

Wigwams for Runners started

Lovely day today, warm sunshine and just itching to get cracking

My runner beans are now getting taller and ready to go outside, I have been hardening them off for the past week or more.

It may be a bit too early, last frost has been May but that is an exception, anyway the beans needed to get out before they twine themselves into a muddle

I chose the White Emergo and Scarlet Emperor to go outside, they are the most advanced. large pots de weeded, chicken poo pellets added and in they went once I had the bamboo wigwam up. Six in each large pot

I have wrapped some old fleece around them, just in case and a bit of protection although my garden is reasonably sheltered anyway

Summer Time starts

The clocks go forward tonight, lovely sunny day outside, time to update this blog

My runners are now all germinated, well all except the mystery one I found, the beans have rotted so never will know what they were. Because the weather is good I have started to harden the runners off, first day out in the sun today, they were galloping away in the conservatory

The tomatoes are now showing the first true leaves, not going leggy and still on the window sill, but no extra heat except from normal room

The mini roses, I have now planted them into a large pot at Age Concern, I did take a photo but it really was a poor shot so not posting that

A lovely show of daffs now in the sun, the early Tete a Tete are going over, but plenty of other varieties to come

My peach is in blossom, but has peach leaf curl, which I was expecting since it is now outside, will just have to take it’s chances because the greenhouse is no longer suitable

And lastly, one of my figs, the one in the conservatory, has embryo figs showing, not quite pea sized yet

Beans are go

Now made the final sowings, indoors, of all my beans, both Runner and climbing French

The ones sown a week or so back, White Emergo and black climbing French are well and truly germinated and have now been moved to the unheated conservatory before they get too leggy

Now sown Runner beans, Firestorm and Scarlet Emperor, climbing French bean Monte Cristo.

Plus a mystery runner bean, own seed, from a pod I had “put by” some years back, but lost the label. I think it may be Wisley Magic but the seed is large white and not really sure. Wait and see, it may never germinate anyway

And during the seed sort out I found an unopened packet of Borage seed, 2015, sown in a pot and will be lovely for the bees if they grow, should do, I know they grew like weeds when I had them previously

Spring Sowing starts

The weather is improving daily, and my itchy fingers just had to get going sowing for summer

I have an electric thermostat controlled propagator, had it for over twenty years and still going well

Decided early start for 2017, indoors, for beans and tomatoes

My beans, both self saved seeds from last year, are runner, White Emergo and an unknown climbing black French bean from Bill at Age Concern, six of each sown into loo roll innards

I have two other varieties but short of loo rolls so will hold off sowing these for a week or so

Also sown, in individual cells in a tray were four each of these tomatoes

Shirley – bought on clearance last year from Wilkinson’s

Tumbling Tom – bought on clearance last year from Wilkinson’s

Minibel – bought on clearance last year from Wilkinson’s

Unknown variety self saved seed from a very sweet cherry tom from Lidl, April last year