- Keep deadheading flowers so that they keep producing more flowers until the first frosts
- Take Yew hedge cuttings. Take semi ripe cuttings to a length of 6 to 8 inches. Put them straining into a plastic bag so that they don’t try out. Cut to size and then bury them up to their foliage in compost. Put them somewhere warm. They should then produce roots so that they are ready to plant out next Spring.
- Net Brassicas. Cabbage White butterflies are drawn to cabbage leaves where they will lay their eggs which hatch and turn into caterpillars which will eat your plants with disastrous results. The only way to prevent this is with garden netting which is fine enough to stop butterflies. Even with this in place it’s a good idea to check every week for signs of their eggs.
- Plant Kale plants. Don’t forget to plant them deep and firm them in well. They become large plants which get blown around so need a good foundation. Plants should be about 18 inches apart. Kale will grow through to next May and you just pick the leaves when you need them through the winter. Monty Don on Gardners World had the clever idea of filling in the gaps between the kale plants with a catch-crop of Oak Leaf Salad Bowl Lettice plants.
I hope you are all enjoying the half term holiday. It’s the start of June and you can practically see the plants growing in the countryside. This half term we’ve been helping the children really enjoy the garden, learn about plants and relate this to what they are studying in maths with measurements and understanding the seasons.
My garden overlooks the farm where the Spring Wheat us growing quickly. Over the last couple of weeks the wheat has started to swell and the crop is looking really healthy.
The children helped plant the runner beans out into the garden. We started this back in March on a rainy weekend. The children enjoyed filling the little pots with compost, putting the seeds in and writing out the labels. We then geminated the seeds in our small greenhouse. We planted these out last weekend (Sunday May 28th 2017). Since then my son has been measuring them each day and recording the measurements (click here for the latest). They are growing at about 20mm per day, which is great to maintain the interest of children.
I take my geranium pots into the garage over winter to protect them from frost. I keep them outside near the house until the frosts start in late October / early November. I brought them back out of the garage in March and have started to feed them once a week with tomato fertiliser. They are looking nice and healthy now and I expect we’ll have flowers in the next few weeks.
I love growing herbs around the garden. I always think they are really over priced in supermarkets and it’s almost impossible to have what herb you need when you are cooking at home if you don’t grow them yourself. Each herb has a distinctive smell, taste and appearance which again is great for engaging children. They love me to test them on the names of the herbs and what dishes they are used in as we walk around the garden. I thought I’d share the above picture of one of the varieties of Sage that I grow because it has come out in flower today (June 2nd 2017). The flowers don’t last long but the bees do love them while they last.
Finally to illustrate again how quickly the garden is growing this time of year the above picture shows a row of rocket that I planted with the children last weekend (May 27th). The seeds geminated within 3 days and the seedlings are going quickly now. You can’t quite see it in this picture but to the left is a row of radishes we planted about 4 weeks ago. The children are fascinated by these and we should be eating them in a week or two. If we get time this weekend we’ll plant another row so that we have a constant supply throughout the summer.
Just spotted this and thought I’d share it with you incase you are taking the kids to London this half term. This would certainly be a great experience on a clear day.