Archive for ◊ November, 2009 ◊

• Thursday, November 26th, 2009

You can save a lot of money by checking out the gardening discounts at this time of the year. I went to my local garden centre and found some reduced price packets of seeds which actually don’t expire until 2011. For a mere 10p I was able to pick up some unusual flower and herb seeds such as Borage and Gypsophilia. I would not normally consider buying these seeds but at that price it’s worth a try.

Strawberry plants are also reduced to half price at this time of year and although it is probably late in the season to be planting them, there is a good chance that they will be fine next year if they can survive the winter. The two varieties which I found were: Hapil and Elsanta, which I have never grown before.

Similarly bulbs like Alliums (Mars) which normally cost about £3 were 50% off as it is getting a bit wet to get planting in the garden. This variety of allium grows really tall flowers (48″) which look lovely in a mixed border and dry out nicely as they fade out. I noticed on their instructions that these alliums can actually be planted successfully right until the end of autumn. Many garden centres also have offers on other spring bulbs such as daffodils and tulips.

Finally I have also bought some broad beans (100 grms for 80p) and although these should have been planted earlier in the month, I have sown them in modules and placed them in the greenhouse to help with germination.

So when you next visit your garden centre to find some Christmas decorations check out the seasonal discounts on seeds, bulbs and plants, and you could save yourself a lot of money.

• Sunday, November 15th, 2009

November is perceived by many as a grim wet month with nothing exciting to do in the garden, and yet for me it signals the turn of the year with so many things to do in preparation for next year’s Summer.

In fact today is actually sunny and warm and I have been able to potter around in the garden and take stock of what’s changed and what needs sorting.

Green Manure

Green Manure

I started by creating a bit of space in my greenhouse in order to provide shelter for frost tender plants such as succulents and the plant cuttings such as rosemary and sage which I made at the end of Summer.

I have also cleared my strawberry bed and pulled up all of the plants as they had been in place for 3 years. Usually strawberry plants don’t crop so well after 3 years hence the need to replace them. I found a lot of ladybirds in my strawberry patch which seem to have really thrived this year. Since l like these dear ladies I have provided them with a shelter in the greenhouse.