Friday, 30 March 2012

tatties all in...

That's it, I've got all of this years spuds planted so now all I can do is wait and pray for decent weather. I'm a couple of weeks earlier than usual but I couldn't let all that sunshine go to waste. With 118 planted in an assortment of containers in the greenhouse and dotted all over the garden my major task is going to be keeping them supplied with water if we get any long dry spells. Methinks I need a couple of extra water butts.

greenhouse potatoes

Those in the greenhouse are really storming away and have been 'earthed up' already. Even the first of the outdoor ones have got their heads well up which means I'll need to keep a watchful eye for any threat of frost.

outdoor potatoes

And it's not just the potatoes that have responded well to the recent warm weather. My first sowing of tomatoes has been potted on and the young plants are looking very healthy and almost ready for their final positions. Trouble is that space is currently occupied by the spuds...oh, what's a poor boy to do?

Because my soil is stony I've grown my parsnips in deep containers for the last few years. I'm putting some back out in the open ground this year by using the hole-boring technique. By ramming a long pointed steel bar into the soil and waggling it slightly you can get a lightly tapered hole which is then filled with a mix of fine compost and sharp sand. Two seeds are sown for each hole and these are thinned to leave the strongest seedling if all germinate. My holes are about 15 inches (37.5cm) deep.
parsnip holes
This technique takes up more space than the containers but if I get bigger, better snips I'll be quite happy.

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