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    'mere, if I have a small raised bed and I intend to grow a few Unnons from set can I use a black sack to control weeds? Ive read I only need to cut a space for the set to sit into, but surely I need to leave room for the onion bulb to grow?

    Secondly when will I know it's safe to throw down a few Spud drills? Still too cold?

    Was gonna try carrots but they really are beyond hassle. Thinning attracts the flies, the veg can get root fly for no reason and no known cure.
    I am the million man.

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      If I understand what you're saying re the black plastic, just cut crosses into it say an inch in either direction and sow your bulbs directly through those - any onions growing through that sort of gap will be able to push through no bother. But it's better to use a membrane rather than an unbroken plastic sheet or similar. The membrane will still stop weeds etc while importantly letting water reach the soil when it rains - plus it's breathable so will allow moisture underneath it to evaporate instead of getting trapped and leading to mould/fungus. You could also use plain brown cardboard, which will rot into the soil over the winter anyway, but it's more awkward to work with.

      Sow spuds now. It shouldn't freeze again, not enough to get under the soil that deep. You might even get away with earlies, although obviously you'll be lifting them a little later than usual.

      If you can be bothered to spend half an hour or so at the sowing stage, the best success I had with carrots was putting 1-2 seeds into each 1" plug of fresh (peat-free) fine potting compost in a seed tray. My seed tray has nearly 100 little squares and maybe 80 of those would usually have produced carrot seedlings. Kept them moist without drowning them and once they had sprouted, I was able to transfer the plugs without breaking the soil around them, and planted those about 6" apart (no need for thinning) and nearly all grew. Tried the more usually recommended sowing methods including having to thin them later and two years in a row it was almost useless.

      Pro-tip - if you're starting carrots indoors and you happen to have a desk fan or similar, a few times over the last few days before you transfer them outdoors set it to waft some air gently over your carrot seedlings for 5-10 minutes at a time,. Apparently it mimics the wind and triggers a hormone in them which strengthens the stalks or stimulates growth, or something like that ...
      Tis but a scratch.

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        Got the spuds in last week..get 'em in. Carrots I would love but they don't seem to like my heavy clay soil too much and take and age.

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          You can get rolls of weed shield rather than using black sacks, it's a much tougher material built to survive the elements.
          When things go wrong, blame McGahan

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            Just in from gathering the last (I think) of the Victoria plums and several bunches of grapes from the polytunnel. The plums are as gorgeous as you'd expect straight off the tree and while the grapes are smaller than what you'd buy, the sweetness is incredible, nearly like honey - only drawback is that I've gotten used to seedless ones from the shop! Also got a couple of handfuls of cherry tomatoes (still growing abundantly in the tunnel) and some small sweet red peppers for tonight's dinner. There's loads of blackberries around here as usual, plus a couple of treefuls of damsons in the field opposite us so if I get the chance over the next few days I'll gather a few kilos of each. And I just picked one of the tastiest apples I've had in years, too - begob, twas everything an apple should be, against which all other apples will be judged. :p

            It's great having a decent harvest now, as the heat of the summer meant that none of the spuds got much above baby size, and the birds attacked the unripe soft fruit before I had a chance to get nets over the trees. The strawberry plants stopped producing in early July, probably because of the heat too - they got plenty of water without being drowned but the creepers started going out a good few weeks earlier than usual.
            Tis but a scratch.

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              I have several rows of parsley. Really nice to have it fresh. However it was not doing well,much of it turning yellow.Scattered some coffee grounds around each plant and watered it in. Problem solved immediately.
              The early bird catches the worm but it's the second mouse that gets the cheese.

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                I never thought I'd be reading about Chippys juicy plums ....
                Please support Milford Hospice. Click here to donate.

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                  I knew someone would, eh, have a crack at that but I thought Cowboy was gonna get in there first! :_D_rvmp_by_bad_bloo
                  Tis but a scratch.

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                    Looking for a gardener in Cork, someone to help tidy up garden before the winter sets in - am recovering from surgery to unable to do much at the moment. If anyone knows of a possibility please let me know.

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                      Holy thread resurrection Batman!
                      Last year, because of other projects I had effectively abandoned all gardening and didn't plant anything at all. I'd no plans to do anything this year either, apart from wait till the autumn to clear the beds in preparation for spring of next year. But then the plague put a stop to everything else, so I'm trying to play catch up in the garden. Stupidly, I hadn't put anything down to cover the soil and prevent grass & weeds taking over, so over the past 2-3 weeks we've intermittently started clearing the beds, boxes etc so as to get some stuff in that will help to feed us over the summer and autumn. I've just a couple of rows of carrot seed in so far, plus some plugs of beetroot ready to go. Should have runner beans, peas and onions started before Monday. I wasn't able to get seed potatoes from any of the usual local sources due to higher demand than normal, but managed to find an online supplier who has promised delivery before the end of the month. Bit late in the year to only be sowing spuds but better than nothing at all. Plan is to put them into raised beds on a sloped section of ground I had set aside for that purpose

                      Before I can do any more sowing though, I have to transplant around a dozen tree saplings which were already overdue for being moved. Not too worried about the likes of rowans and alders, which are pretty hardy and which do a lot of self-seeding anyway. However I've a couple of oak saplings which I really shouldn't have left heeled in as long as I did - the spot where they are has only a thin covering of soil before you get to really hard clay, so the roots have spread fairly wide for trees that are only a few feet tall. My own fault entirely. I've the holes dug for where they're going to, and hopefully a combination of bone meal, chicken manure pellets and plenty of soaking will help them survive the move. The biggest challenge is to tease the roots out of where they are right now without doing too much damage to them. A week ago I was still putting on a fleece to go and work outdoors - today the sunscreen is on and the sweat is lashing out of me. I'll have earned my first beer this evening!

                      Anyone else getting stuck in?
                      Tis but a scratch.

                      Comment


                        Originally posted by mr chips View Post
                        Holy thread resurrection Batman!
                        Last year, because of other projects I had effectively abandoned all gardening and didn't plant anything at all. I'd no plans to do anything this year either, apart from wait till the autumn to clear the beds in preparation for spring of next year. But then the plague put a stop to everything else, so I'm trying to play catch up in the garden. Stupidly, I hadn't put anything down to cover the soil and prevent grass & weeds taking over, so over the past 2-3 weeks we've intermittently started clearing the beds, boxes etc so as to get some stuff in that will help to feed us over the summer and autumn. I've just a couple of rows of carrot seed in so far, plus some plugs of beetroot ready to go. Should have runner beans, peas and onions started before Monday. I wasn't able to get seed potatoes from any of the usual local sources due to higher demand than normal, but managed to find an online supplier who has promised delivery before the end of the month. Bit late in the year to only be sowing spuds but better than nothing at all. Plan is to put them into raised beds on a sloped section of ground I had set aside for that purpose

                        Before I can do any more sowing though, I have to transplant around a dozen tree saplings which were already overdue for being moved. Not too worried about the likes of rowans and alders, which are pretty hardy and which do a lot of self-seeding anyway. However I've a couple of oak saplings which I really shouldn't have left heeled in as long as I did - the spot where they are has only a thin covering of soil before you get to really hard clay, so the roots have spread fairly wide for trees that are only a few feet tall. My own fault entirely. I've the holes dug for where they're going to, and hopefully a combination of bone meal, chicken manure pellets and plenty of soaking will help them survive the move. The biggest challenge is to tease the roots out of where they are right now without doing too much damage to them. A week ago I was still putting on a fleece to go and work outdoors - today the sunscreen is on and the sweat is lashing out of me. I'll have earned my first beer this evening!

                        Anyone else getting stuck in?
                        Spuds have been in for about 4 weeks now. The garlic I planted last autumn is looking good. But that's about it so far. Fine weather for gardening though.
                        Excellence is hard to keep quite - Sherrie Coale

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                          I’m tackling shrubs and trimming hedges I should have tackled earlier but didn’t have time. Hot work in this weather
                          "There are a lot of points that we’ve left behind and this is with a young group. That probably tells you what they’re capable of and that they’re a very good side.

                          Probably next year or the year after next they will take some stopping"

                          Anthony Foley, May 2016. Axel RIP

                          Comment


                            Originally posted by McCloud View Post

                            Spuds have been in for about 4 weeks now. The garlic I planted last autumn is looking good. But that's about it so far. Fine weather for gardening though.
                            Is it too late to sow spuds now?
                            Only fools and drunks argue over everything. If you don’t have a hangover the next day you’re not the drunk...

                            Comment


                              No, if you have them get them in straight away. You probably won't be lifting them until a bit later in the year, but it should still be ok.
                              Tis but a scratch.

                              Comment


                                Never had much interest in the garden but this year I took a notion to plant some spinach, rocket and lettuce in a fish box I found washed up on a beach. It's actually addictive when you've managed to grow something yourself. I also got into bonsai recently so I planted a variety of trees from seeds over the winter. Much my surprise I now have a bunch of sycamore, ash and mountain ash which I hope to train and wire over the next few years.
                                When things go wrong, blame McGahan

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