Something’s not quite right

This is my first attempt at stringing onions.  Em reckons it looks a bit rude but I have no idea what she means, looks nothing like a pair of breasts to me.

I’ve just been reading about alternative stringing methods so watch out for the second attempt…coming to a blog near you soon

A disappointing year – ish

I’ve just been out harvesting my onion crop.  Out of the 40 or 50 seeds I planted I only got a yield of 15 onions which was a little disappointing, but the onions I did get are fantastic.  The onion top-right in the picture is flipping enormous!!  To prevent such disappointments next year I have just ordered 300 sets from marshalls so next years onion haul will be needing a wide-angled lens.  Along with the onions I also ordered a pear tree, garlic, some Amelia strawberries [ well I had to really ] and various vegetable seeds.

A few weeks ago I transplanted a load of strawberry runners from my outdoor plants into used Chinese take-away tubs.  I’ve got about 25 new plants above but I think a few of them wont take.  Still, between the strawberry plants pictured above and the 12 Amelia variety I just bought I think the family Steele will be having a bumper harvest of strawberries next year.  Which is fortunate since Amelia is pretty much addicted to them.

The pepper seedlings which my Dad gave me in March have matured well but I think they would have benefited from being in bigger pots, having the greenhouse at a higher temperature and not being grown in my home made compost.  My home made compost was lacking a little and in future will be added to the raised beds along with my leaf mulch.  I’ll stick to shop bought compost for seedlings until I get better at home composting…or get a wormery thingy 🙂

The one and only beef tomato that made it from the donations off Joan next door is ripening well.  It will be a treasured part of a salad and the seeds will be saved for next years attempt when I’ll consider feeding the flipping things 🙁

So the conclusion to the 2008 growing season is definitely could do better.  Still, it’s been a pretty shitty year for growing stuff but I have high hopes for 2009 now that I have taken out a subscription to "Grow Your Own".

P.S. Pictures of my homegrown sweetcorn still to come.

Greenhouse revamp

In a true Alan Titchmarsh meets Sarah Beeny stylee I spent the weekend giving my greenhouse a bit of a revamp.  As can be seen from the "Before" picture the place was a bit of a health hazard with odd bits of paving making up the floor.  Some might argue, and I am of course referring to my darling wife here, that this is what a proper greenhouse should look like…but not I.

The newly revamped greenhouse has a light smattering of plum slate chippings at 70 quid a tonne [ robbing bastards ] with a lovely geometric pattern of paving stones forming a centrepiece.  This bijou little residence is now home to 70 germinating onion seeds, a bunch of pepper plants and some other stuff that I planted that I have since forgotten.  So that’ll be a nice surprise in a few months.