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Category Archives: Green Fingers
Look at that! We actually have some beans ready for harvest! I have to admit, it happened sooner than I was expecting, but I’m very pleased about it, because tonight we shall sample the first fruits of our labour. There are only about half a dozen or so ready, but this afternoon they will be gently plucked and then I shall steam them to have with our tea. I’ve never before eaten anything that I’ve grown myself, so I’m inordinately proud of myself. I’m also hopeful that the fact that Xan helped plant them and has watched them growing will persuade him to eat them all up. He’s usually pretty good about vegetables, but it’s a while since we had beans…
And look at this very pretty yellow flower. We woke this morning to find the largest of our courgette flower buds had burst into bloom – and a very pretty one at that! I never knew courgette flowers were yellow (OK, so I could easily have found out, but it was a lovely surprise). I was also surprised at just how big the flower is – you can see my fingers in the picture holding it still, so you can see how big it is.
And you can see we have a lot more courgette buds getting ready to open. I’m hopeful that we’ll soon start to see actual courgettes on there, and by the looks of things, we’ll get quite a few, so I think some will be given to Leni to use, as I doubt we could use them all!
And we have more blossoms on the beans too, as well as more beans that will most likely be ready for picking in about a week, so we can continue to enjoy our bounty in the coming weeks!
Ever since we fenced in our bit of garden last autumn, I’ve wanted to do something with it, but we’re kind of limited as to what’s possible. I fancied planting veg out there, but the kids round here are notorious for nicking stuff (and the adults aren’t much better, really!), so we figured that if we planted veg in the garden, the crop we would see would amount to zero, as it would all have been taken by other folks before we got to it.
So I decided I wanted to plant some flowers, but what should I choose?
I have absolutely no gardening experience whatsoever, so it had to be plants that I could put in the ground and they’d pretty much look after themselves. I also wanted plants that would smell lovely, as I’m a very scent-driven person (as is Xander). They also had to look pretty, as I love beautiful things (and Xander loves pretty flowers too).
What I got was (planted left to right as we look onto the garden from our livingroom window) lavender, sage, thyme, dianthus, kalanchoe, rosemary and butterfly lavender. We also got some clematis montana to wind its way through the chain link fence on the left side of the garden. It will take a couple of years to really start stretching the full length, but I planted it half way down the garden and it should spread both ways. Xan and I had lovely time together digging the holes in the ground and watering out new plants!
And indoors, our beans and courgettes are doing very well. The beans are actually starting to flower and the courgettes are covered in flower buds too! The sweet peppers are still working hard in their original pot, and I hope they’ll be ready to move to a larger pot some time in the next couple of weeks.
Our tomatoes don’t seem to be doing so well, though. They seem to have stopped growing and aren’t looking as healthy I wish they would. And our strawberry plants are all still teeny-tiny, but I’m hoping they’ll get there eventually. Even if they do, though, I don’t think we’ll be getting much of a strawberry crop (if any at all) this year.
We did a little re-potting this afternoon. Last year, I won a lovely window planter system but never got round to using it, so I decided it was high time I put that right! Our beans (which we planted on 26.03.11) and courgettes (planted 03.04.11) looked big enough to be replanted, so they’re now in the window box. I’ve loosely tied the bean stalks to some coloured pencils to keep them upright for now.
None of the other plants were quite big enough to re-pot yet, so the tomatoes (planted 16.03.11), sweet peppers (planted 26.03.11) and strawberries (planted 16.03.11) are all still in their original containers, although the peppers and tomatoes may be ready next weekend if we’re lucky.
The strawberries seem to be taking forever to sprout – how long do they usually take?
We planted to large red pots of strawberries (03.04.11) and one tiny little plant is just starting to peek up through the soil. It’s taken a little quicker than the ones we planted earlier, but still very slow and there’s nothing showing in the other pot yet.
And last, but not least, my little white herb planter. The coriander and parsley both seem to be growing well, but the basil is slow to take hold and the chives are very sparse so far. I’m hopeful they’ll thicken up and go wild as I’m looking forward to using my freshly-gown herbs in my cooking some time in the very near future!
So, has anyone else out there been planting who would like to share their pearls of gardening wisdom, or their success stories? I’d love to hear from you!
Our little collection of home-grown goodness is growing! Our tomatoes, which we planted on 16th March, are growing well, and the herbs are sprouting up beautifully. The strawberry seeds we planted at the same time, however, haven’t taken, so today we planted two new large pots of strawberries. While we were at it, we also planted some courgette seeds, so we’ll see how they come along.
Our biggest success, though, is the beans! We planted them on 26th March and they have shot up! The other night, the tallest shoot was about 1.5 inches, but by this morning when we checked, it had grown to almost 6 inches tall – we couldn’t believe it!
I think that, next weekend, we’ll move the tomatoes and beans into the large window planter I got last year when I joined the One Pot Pledge. By then I hope we’ll see some sweet pepper and strawberry shoots ni their pots too – fingers crossed!
Thank you to the lovely Lorraine Grimshaw for passing this award to me – I’m very flattered!
Now, to the rules of the award:
1. Thank the person that awarded you (see above)
2. List 7 things about myself
3. Pass the award to 15 other stylish bloggers
So, here goes:
- I’ve been married to my hubby, Dale, for 7 1/2 years and we have one son, Xander, who is 2 1/2 years old.
- I love books and occasionally review books to authors and publishers. I used to do that a lot more often, but since Xander was born, I’ve not had so much time for reading, so I only do a handful each year instead of a stack each month.
- My other favourite pastime is cross stitch. I learned to cross stitch when I was a teenager, but fell out of the habit in my early 20s. I only came back to it ni February 2009, but I’ve barely put down the needle since!
- I January 2010, I started designing my own cross stitch and blackwork charts and set up my Kincavel Krosses design blog. It’s my hope that one day I’ll be able to sell some of my designs, but that’s a little way off yet…
- I very recently started selling some of my hand-cross-stitched items online. Just items of my own designs – a few bookmarks and things at the moment, but I hope to grow that soon. Check out my Kincavel Krosses Folksy store.
- Over the last year, I decided to learn how to bake. I’m a pretty decent cook, but baking was a skill that had thus far eluded me. I think I’ve improved a lot since I made that decision and now turn out rather good cupcakes.
- This month I decided to try being a bit green-fingered and planted up some tomatoes, strawberries, herbs, sweet peppers and beans. My track record isn’t great where plants are concerned, but I’m determined to harvest a nice crop of various eatables later this year!
And my recipients are:
It’s been ten days since we decided to try being a little green-fingered and grow some of our own food (or at least attempt to gain something edible – LOL!). My track record with plants to date hasn’t been great, so I’m making a concerted effort to do things right…
On 16th March, Xan and I planted a little pot each of tomatoes and strawberries. The tomatoes are doing really well, but the strawberries seem to be taking their time deciding what they want to do. I think I can see the beginnings of one tiny shoot in their pot, so I’m hopeful they’re deciding to sprout and will soon take after the tomatoes…
That same day, we planted coriander, basil, chives and parsley in an herb planter (I got the whole kit as a Xmas gift). The coriander has taken hold really well already; the basil and chives are just peeking through the soil, and the parsley looks like it’s just starting to poke through too.
Today, I was in town with Xander and took him into the local pound shop to “choose a prize”. He did as he usually does and chose a book, but then spotted some veg-pots, picked up one each of sweet peppers and green beans, and said, “I want to plant them, Mummy. Want to grow them and eat them up!” So, because they were only a quid each, we bought them and planted them up this afternoon.
As a result of all this, we have the beginnings of a lovely little kitchen garden on our kitchen windowsill! Lets see if I can keep them all alive and gain a nice crop of various veggies!
I’ve always fancied growing my own fruit and veg, but seeing as how we live in an area where the young’uns run wild and pull everything up out of gardens, it seems pointless to try planting in our small patch of green.
However, when I was at Asda at the weekend, I spotted some tiny pot kits for growing strawberries and tomatoes that are only £1 so I bought one of each for Xan. I also got a herb planter kit for Xmas and I felt it was time to get everything started, so just after lunch today, Xan and I planted our first lot of strawberries, tomatoes, basil, coriander, chives and parsley, and got lovely and messy doing it! They’ll be growing on our kitchen windowsill.
So, we should have strawberries and tomatoes from around late June to early August and the herbs should be ready for use around the same kind of time, I think. Now, I don’t exactly have green fingers, but I think it’s an important lesson for Xan to learn about where our food comes from and to be able to enjoy eating some food he’s helped plant and nurture.
I might even buy a few more of the strawberry and tomato pots next Sunday when we do out shopping, as last year I won an indoor window planter and I’ve not used it yet! It would be great to fill it with my own sweet soft fruits! And think of the money we’ll save picking my own, fresh from the planters, instead of forking out at the supermarket! It’s all added incentive to look after them… I can hardly wait!