5-6 April 2008
So far the answer to “can” you grown canned tomatoes is “Well, *I* can’t” but I’m leaving them in for now. This weekend saw a few sowings and a small accident with some Broad Ripple Yellow Currant seeds, compost and the propagator (well, I thought it would encourage the canned ones).
Some old basil seed refused to germinate but a fresh pot has come on quickly and I have used up a couple of old packets as well while the propagator remains on. This also contains lemon tree cuttings, turmeric roots, and some myrtus ugni, which I bought from Chiltern Seeds last year, but had no luck with. I’ve put the remaining seed, half just under and half on the surface of the compost. The plant was mentioned on Gardener’s World a couple of weeks ago (the same programme as the yacon) so I thought I’d dig out the seed – I don’t have a lot of hope for it but it’s more likely to grow in some soil than inside a wooden wine box on top of the wardrobe where the rest of our seed collection lives. Also, I’m trying to rationalise my seed collection and make sure things are used up and given the chance to grow or given away if I have too much of any one plant.
Potted up the British Green Tiger and Salt Spring Sunrise tomatoes, three Trifetti chillis and a couple of extra Rotoco (Rocoto? I must look it up) chillis. Have also popped in some more beans (if I put three beans in this pot and two beans in this pot, what do I have, Baldrick?) of Ferrari and Triumph de Farcy two Nano di Milano (I think) courgettes, to have another go at a couple in large pots in the greenhouse – this worked well last year and we ate our first in mid-May last year, followed by almost exactly none for the rest of the summer as the sun sulked and the rain poured down. Here’s hoping for just a little more sun this year – this week we’ve had wild garlic and rocket in a sandwich so at least we’re starting off on the right foot!
Didn’t get time to post last week’s pottering up (really only of interest to myself – I want to find a way to differentiate my “diary” posts from more detailed mutterings).
29 March 2008
Successful germination for 13/14 field beans
No show on Canadian Wonder dwarf french bean (believed to be about 4 year old seed, possibly more, so not a surprise). Removed the ailing beans from the rootrainers and replaced them with nasturtium seeds
Dwarf beans Rocquencourt and Ferrari look promising even in the greenhouse through cold weather
Excellent germination on Bath Cos lettuce from the HSL
Hungarian Blue breadseed poppy not looking promising – used last year’s seed so have sown another potful, from last year’s pods (100s of seeds in each pod) (note added – the seed from last year’s pods came up within two days!)
Started harvesting a little rocket
Spinach in pots looking quite fat – am going to pot up in to larger tubs and possibly move outdoors
Victorian Purple Podded and Parsley Peas now in the greenhouse hardening off. The Parsley Pea strikes all manner of interesting poses as it grows, as there are leaves where there would normally be tendrils and on the small pea plants they look like hands at the end of arms. Photo in this post is one of its yoga impressions!
Potted up some tomatoes:
15 My Girl (HSL)
7 Black Master (Real Seeds)
7 Purple Ukraine (Real Seeds)
100% germination on those (and leaving me with many more tomatoes than I have room for..at current rates I will have 45 plants, with the greenhouse able to take 12 and room outdoors for perhaps half a dozen. Some rehoming will have to go on again this year. And this is me being good!)
We know very little about these…obtained them from a friend of a friend, who described them as popular in the Middle East, but was unsure exactly how they are eaten. Obviously they are very close to garden broad beans but I think these are more used as a pulse – http://www.ukagriculture.com/crops/field_beans_uk.cfm has some nice detail and pictures, and says “The major human consumption market for beans is the Middle East where beans are used prior to the Ramadan fasting period.” We will probably keep most of any harvest this year for seed, so we have plenty of time to find out more about them.