In my Gardening Blog today I will be wittering on about the weather as usual as well as warning those of you who have ordered a flower box to grow to get ready, showing off about my tractor driving skills and treating you to some more photos of beautiful garden shots.
We have all been enjoying some proper hot sunny days the last couple of weeks and oh boy was it was needed. All around me I can see the effect on growth in my field, the herb bed at the field kitchen, the toms and cucs in our polytunnels and well just everywhere around. It fills me with joy I have to say.
The Herb Garden at Riverfords restaurant , The Field Kitchen.
However…..I feel the odd heavy shower at night would improve life even more. Like the one we in Buckfastleigh had last Saturday night at 4 or 5 in the morning (officially Sunday). It was a proper deluge, a downpour and was so loud that it woke me up. I was delighted as I had just planted my first seedlings in my flower field that very morning. What luck! Obviously I had watered them in already but this extra dousing was just the ticket. In previous years I have planted up my field in the first couple of weeks of April. This spring has been unusually cold and then rained for ages and no one could get on the land to cultivate-hence a late start.
Flower Box To Grow
These cut flower kits are being delivered from next week. The plants have arrived and are looking great. A couple of varieties haven’t germinated very well so we have a bit of substitution here and there but all in all, it’s looking good. Having originally worried that this kit was going out too late in the season it turns out that what with the weather we’ve had, it’s really an ideal time after all. So if you have a box arriving, spend some time this bank holiday weekend preparing your site for your cutting garden kit.
If you haven’t already dug in some manure, do so now or chicken pellets will also do fine. Flowers don’t need as much nutrients as veg so they say. You can end up with too much leaf and not so many blooms but I am not totally convinced. The years I have had muck spread before cultivation everything grew lovely and tall and produced buckets and buckets of flowers. Don’t over do it but a couple of sacks of well rotted manure chucked about ‘never did no one no harm’ as we say down here.
This week I have given my first farm tours at Riverford. I have been training over the last few months and to start with was very wary about driving a massive tractor, pulling an extremely long trailer behind it. But I have to say, not wanting to big myself up or anything; I am a dab hand at it now. I can back it up too, round quite awkward corners where pallets have been strategically placed in the way, to really put me through my paces!! Some of the male staff were pretty skeptical to begin with but I am pleased to say they were wrong. I am pretty good at it. But more about the tours next week where I will introduce you to Julius, a Ugandan pineapple farmer who I have had the pleasure of working with this week, teaching children about growing and showing them the farm.
Gardens in May
Here are a few photos for you to enjoy.
Iris and sweet rocket, Hesperis matronalonis
Formal garden with loose informal planting.
I am off to London for the jubilee celebrations and to see my offspring. Happy growing and don’t forget to water in this hot dry weather.