Tag Archives: compost

The Number One Secret To Growing Great Plants

The Number One

Ask any gardener the secret to growing and they will all give you a different answer, but here is the number one secret to growing great plants. This is of course my own personal belief but it is based on years of gardening experience. Good Soil Having good soil is an important factor in growing great plants, the soil is where the plants get their nutrients from so of course good soil is a necessary element. This is why every season I add well rotted manure and fresh compost to my soil. Adding compost and / or manure will improve… → Read More

Do Tomato Plants Benefit From Garden Lime and Epsom Salts

DO Tomatoes Plants Benefit From Garden Lime and Epsom Salts

Do Tomato Plants Benefit From Garden Lime and Epsom Salts? Well I don’t know so it’s time to do some research to see what effect, if any adding these products to the soil when planting tomatoes has. What Is Garden Lime? Garden Lime or Ground Limestone with the active ingredient Calcium Carbonate is used primarily for vegetable crops to balance the soils PH levels. The PH levels indicate how Acid or Alkaline the soil is and can be determined by means of a simple test kit available at most garden centres. Too far to either end of the Acid/ Alkili… → Read More

The Best Way To Improve Soil

the best way to improve soil

There are many things that can be done to improve your soil, and there are many ways to improve your soil you can : Add Compost Add soil improver Grow a green manure Add leaf mould Add fertilizer Add seaweed So lets explore the best way to improve soil. Why Improve your Soil ? To grow good produce you need good soil.  That is it in a nutshell. Every crop you grow takes something out of the soil and to keep growing good produce you need to keep the soil as healthy as you can. What Is Compost ? Compost… → Read More

The Spanish Slug Invasion

The Spanish Slug Invasion

There is a new predator in your garden and you should be prepared for all out war. You work hard to prepare your soil to grow your  plants and vegetables,  you watch for slugs and snails during wet periods. Usually you can relax once the weather warms up as the slugs and snails keep to the shade and stay in underground… …. Not any more the Spanish Slug invasion has begun. The Spanish Slug Invasion They arrived by stealth, and as we speak they are probably invading your plot, make no mistake, this is no joke. Something has to be… → Read More

How To Stop Runner Beans Drying Out

how to save seeds from runner beans

runner beans

If like me you can’t always get to water your plot you need as many tricks as you can find to stop your plants from losing too much moisture, so this post is called how to stop runner beans drying out but this technique works equally  well for squashes, tomatoes etc.For more information on Growing squashes  click the link.  It’s important that runner beans don’t dry out because when runner beans do get dry they get stringy. Step one – How to stop runner beans drying out   The first thing to do is to dig a trench roughly a… → Read More

A Moment Of Serendipity

Young rhubarb (serendipity)

Young rhubarb (serendipity)

Serendipity – A Definition According to dictionary.com Serendipity is defined as “an aptitude for making desirable discoveries by accident”. Put plainly I would say it’s being in the right place at the right time. Why a post on Serendipity? Well a couple of weeks ago I was at my allotment when a Serendipitous ( if that’s even a word ) moment occurred and I would like to share it here. Working Hard I had been planning to turn my current pallet based compost bins into a rhubarb bed since last year when I added three plastic compost bins to my… → Read More

Air pruning

Air pruning pot

Every where I look lately there seems to be a reference to Air pruning, so I thought I’d look in to it. After some hours of research it appears to be a good idea. So what’s it all about? Well basically, its about letting the roots of your pot plants come into contact with the air which will “burn” them. Thus stopping plants becoming root bound. What happens with pot plants is that over time the roots reach the side of the pot and then start growing around the inside of the pot eventually strangling the plant and killing it…. → Read More

Don’t dismiss the Dandelions

Dandelions

Don’t dismiss Dandelions as just another problem weed to get rid of. Like Comfrey ,Dandelions have long tap roots which allow them to absorb minerals that other shallow rooted plants can’t reach. All parts of the Dandelion are edible, flowers, leaves, and roots. Dandelions contain the following:- Vitamin A Vitamin B Vitamin C Vitamin D Vitamin E Vitamin K Vitamin P Iron Potassium Zinc Calcium Lecithin Magnesium Niacin Phosphorus Boron Young Dandelion leaves can be used in salads and are quite sweet but older, fully grown leaves tend to be bitter and should be stripped from the central stem as the… → Read More

How to make a yew hedge

recently planted yew hedge

At the Big Garden we have been getting battered by the strong winds recently and as a result of this quite a few of the hurdle fence panels around the herb garden have been severely damaged. So it was decided to replace them with a living fence (yew hedge). The first step is to remove fence panels, once this is done, dig a trench roughly a spades depth keeping it as straight as possible (we used a string stretched between two stakes) and mix in some compost then water thoroughly then place each plant approximately one foot (30cms) apart. Spread the roots out… → Read More

How To Make Comfrey Tea (And Then How To Use It)

how to make comfrey tea

How I make my own comfrey tea

What Is Comfrey? Comfrey is a herb that back in the middle ages was used by healers for all manner of conditions including acne, varicose veins and many others but its alternative name of “knit bone” gives a clue as to its main use back in the day, to speed up the healing of broken bones. Well I can’t tell you if any of that is true, all I can tell you is that as a plant food comfrey tea is second to none. Comfrey has a tap root (like a dandelion root) which penetrates deep into the sub soil,… → Read More