Monday, May 16, 2011

RHS qualified

Bit of a belated post with the result of my RHS Level 2 Certificate in Horticulture (I actually received it in early May) but I passed - with commendation! I was really pleased and am now planning to move on to Level 3 in September.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

planting out the tomatoes

So, only a couple of weeks after the great tomato giveaway, I'm finally ready to put the best of the bunch into their final growing positions in the greenhouse. My greenhouse is quite teeny but I cram as much in as will fit but still allow me to access everything for watering. And my techniques and methods have been honed and tweaked over the last few years until I have what works best for me.

Tomatoes really benefit from extra root depth so I've cut the bottom off a couple of large plastic plant pots to provide this. It's basically the same as those expensive 'tomato grow pots' you'll find for sale in the garden centre - so money saving and repurposing all in one. I also tend to put the growbag on its side to maximise the depth of compost rather than using them flat on the floor.

I cut a hole in the growbag the same size as the interior circumference of the bottomless pot and then push the pot into this to about a 1 inch depth. Then I pot up the tomato in the usual fashion. I find that 3 tomato plants per growbag works well - anymore than that and I get lost in a jungle of foliage.

In February I sowed some self-saved tagete seeds and the seedlings of these are planted into small holes at the front of the bag in an attempt to ward off the whitefly. Whether it actually works or not is a mystery to me. My toms haven't suffered from whitefly, but as someone on a gardening forum recently commented, they haven't suffered with tigers either, so maybe it works on them as well...

Bottletop drippers are positioned at the back of the growbag, leaning up against the greenhouse wall so I don't need to hand water the plants every day (I'm a bit forgetful on that front if the truth be told).Then I pour myself a generous Pimms and sit back and wait for the harvest.

Monday, May 2, 2011

Featured on Fennel and Fern

Yay! A blog post I submitted to the lovely Fennel and Fern site has been chosen to feature on their front page. I've been skulking around anonymously on the site for a while, reading articles and looking at their lovely photos - and now I'm on it myself. Big smiles! Click here to read it.