Sunday, 5 October 2008

October 5th, 2008

I have a gardening/recycling tip for you all.... I know the weather is now turning and the thought of little seedlings in this weather is probably not a good idea. But it will help you come spring when you have little seedlings to plant out.
I used this for my fall seedlings that I wanted to plant for my winter crops. I planted in large pots fairly close together some chard, spinach, carrots, beets, kohl rabi and some purple sprouting broccoli. On one of the gardening forums there was someone there making some pots out of newspaper with a wooden gadget. I got to thinking about this and thought I could do this and I don't really need any wooden gadgets to do it.
So here is how I made my recycled newspaper plant pots. These work in two ways, one you are recycling.... and two the newspaper will slowly rot down..... after you have planted your little seedlings in the ground. You get less root disturbance this way. If you have taller type of plants just make the pots bigger.

First start with your sheet of newspaper. Cut it in half so you have two sheets.
Then fold and cut these in half again.....

You now have two pieces that you need to then fold in half one more time....

Now take an empty paper/kitchen towel cardboard tube or you could use a toilet tissue tube.

And with your folded half of newspaper.....

Lay your tube on top of the paper like so...

Tucking in the bottom as you go roll the paper around the tube.

Just before you get to the end roll then tuck in the corner and then the last bit of the bottom.

It should look like this when you are done....

Now tap it down on a flat surface....

I give it a little circular motion...... and then take the tube out of the paper pot.

With your fingers push down the inside of the pot...

And it should sit up like this....

You can cut a little tab too to help hold it together at the seam.

And here they are all planted up with their little seedlings. Keep them moist and try not to let them dry out. When ready to plant just tear off the top part and plant directly into the ground. The paper will rot down in time and the roots will find their way out of the paper.
These little seedlings are all now planted out and doing well so far. Now if I can just keep the slugs off them. I have been saving all my egg shells and crumbling them up and putting them around the plants to help keep them off. But they are very determined creatures.

This is my chard bed that is now quite full of lovely leaves and stems for stir fries. Amazing how quickly it grows.

Well I didn't think my tomatoes were ever going to turn red..... we had loads and loads of green ones on the plants. I resisted picking them and making loads of fried green tomatoes.... I figure all that frying isn't good for us. But I did make one batch and they were lovely.

The one above is my biggest tomato.... It was delicious!!!

And the seeds were from a tomato that I bought in Bourough market. I had saved the seed and planted them last February. You just never know what you may get so try planting the seeds of tomatoes you buy.

The aubergine plants that I bought were a little disappointing, although I did get some. They were very long thin fruits. Not the big thick fruits you buy in the market. Although they tasted really nice in the curry dish I made. The slugs also thought them delicious.

Our garden is more than just vegetables. Above is my fav fuchsia called Thalia. I love the dark purplish green leaves and the bright orange red trumpet like flowers. We bought a little plant and this is now quite big and has produced a little plant for us to keep over winter for a good start next spring.

Brian and I had a chuckle after Brian read an article in the Radio times about gardening. In this article Alan Titchmarsh(a big gardening celebrity) said at this time of the year there really isn't alot of colour in British gardens. We would like to invite him to come and see our little garden.

Although the rain and cold temps have taken their toll on alot of the plants. There is still plenty of colour. The fuchsias are still blooming as are the penstamens and how about the colour of this coleus!!!

And before long we will be planting some winter blooming pansies and the primulas are already starting to bloom again. And before you know it spring will be here.... and the excitement of new veggies and fruit and flowers and leaves!!

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