Compost

We are starting to get ready to plant up the compost heaps with Pumpkins and Gourds, we have a great collection this year thanks to Kyle, she finds fun seeds for me in America. We will plant up two of the heaps, the three year old and the one we have just stopped using, it is always a bit of a problem when we start a new heap, because we put the waste from the kitchen on it, and it is low to the ground, the dogs spend a rather long time on it, maybe I should just cut out the middle man and feed the waste to the dogs in the kitchen. At the end of last week we cleared the weeds from the old heap and put the last of the compost from the old heap onto the heap that we will use next year so the plants have something to grow in. Clearing the old heap was interesting, the snails had used it as a hotel, the birds would have enjoyed them over the weekend. 

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Parsnip problems

We had the same problem last year, the rows of Parsnips seed did not do a thing, I talked to a few visitors to see what they do with their seed to get it moving last year, the joy of an open garden to the public, we have knowledge that comes to us,  and a few talked about getting the seed going on damp kitchen paper and then planting them out once they get moving, we got this system going yesterday, the seed that I planted on the 03/04/14 has not done a thing, we enjoy Parsnips too much to do nothing, I am also going to sow a plug try of seed  today and put it in the glass house to see if it does something, sometimes you have to do all you can to get things growing. 

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Leek

Thank you Thomas, the Leeks are in and looking great. We sowed two different seed this year L.’Musselburgh  and L.’Lyon 2 Prizetaker’ both lots of seed were sown on the 19/03/14 so by now were ready to be planted out, we could not find the tool that we use to drill the holes to put them under ground so I had to go and sweet talk Simon in the barn to make me a new one, I think he has a soft spot for me so made it right away and off Thomas went making the holes and placing the plants into the holes. We have planted three long rows this year, one more than last year, I really think it is one of the best winter vegetables and the foliage looks great next to the Artichokes. 

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Slug Pellets

The time has come to bring out the organic slug pellets, we have had to do some replanting of plants today, the slugs do seem to have come in while I was away and eaten a few plants, this is not the end of the world really, but I do hate to see gaps in my planting, I have very mixed feeling about the use of chemicals in a garden and like it less on food but also want to get good crops. I have never really being the greatest follower of the organic movement, for me eating seasonal and local is very important and I think we need to think hard about what we put on our soil but at the same time we need to keep things at bay that are going to effect the production of food and this is why I have used slug pellets on the garden today, I put them on at sunset in the hope that the slugs will come out at night and die but I worry about the effect this could have on the bird population, you always find out what these things are really like ten years later when it is too late, I hope this is the last time I have to use organic slug pellets this year. 

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Over the fence

It is sometimes good to get away from the garden and take stock of what is going on in your own garden by going to see another garden, and  to go to maybe the most charming gardens in the world in my eyes is not a bad thing either. De Wiersee is in the Netherlands just outside the village of Vorden, Peter and Laura garden with a deep passion for what they have, like a lot of the great gardens of the world the Vegetable Garden is at the furthest point to the kitchen, in the Netherlands it is not the end of the world because the country is flat, you can ride a bike to it. The Vegetable garden is set out like the order beds at Kew and they are a mix of fruit, vegetables and cut flowers, even at this time of the year when things are still getting going it is a charm to be in there. Like me, Peter and Laura love food which is reflected in the amount of time given over to this area, a garden worth a visit. 

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