November 2014

PUMPKINS HOGS AND TROLLS

The list of messy jobs was very long. The fun one being carving up my pumpkins. The one that I should have done earlier was planting winter veg. The worst was the ivy that had reached the gutters.
But first, my scotch-bonnets and jalapeno chillies are harvested, and with some gourds that a friend gave me, cried out for an autumn arrangement. I had the idea of doing pumpkin hedge hog this Halloween with empty biro pens as spikes. A packet of ten for 28p was a bargain and so bought a hundred pens for my design. Lots of drilling and a couple of evenings later I’d got myself some rather wacky decorations and the gourds looked like the hogs baby friends with their funny faces.

Goards make funny faces with the hog.
Goards make funny faces with the hog.
So proud of my hogs.
So proud of my hogs.

Ivy! Be gone!

Yikes! The roots have taken hold...
Yikes! The roots have taken hold…

Now it was time to tackle the ivy. Together with a friend we had a genius idea, which was to tie some rope around a main stem half way up and pull very hard. The whole lot came down in two lots. Armed with confidence I tackled the garage ivy too. But this time, the ivy left some unsightly scars on the wall. Oh no, a re-vamp is required, that’s all I need. Never mind at least there will be ‘before and after’ pics coming soon(ish)

Couldn't be simpler. Tie a rope round the bottom and pull it of the wall.
Couldn’t be simpler. Tie a rope round the bottom and pull it of the wall.
This looks well and truely rubbish
This looks well and truely rubbish 

Last minute plotting
At the allotment I was late getting the Swiss chard and winter spinach in the ground, but its done now. It hasn’t been too cold so they’ve got a fighting chance to establish. My caulies lack of foliage has meant unprotected curds. Now they have all got brown oxidation stains on them. The first batch had plenty of leaves and came from the same packet of seeds so it’s another puzzle to solve. I am pleased, though, with my leek planting. I have a batch that is ready now and will keep me supplied all winter and a second patch of younger leeks that will be ready in spring. Getting a continuous planting plan, where I can, is very perplexing. It’s often overlooked and I end up with an empty plot five months of the year. I need a proper schedule and of course actual time to see it through.

Always good to see veggies growing at the plot in November.
Always good to see veggies growing at the plot in November.
Spinach and Chard planted although they look a little vunerable.
Spinach and Chard planted although they look a little vulnerable.

My next job is to plant out bulbs. Tulips, alliums and ‘Lion King’ iris are now queuing for my attention. I have already planted a batch of scarlet wallflowers in a giant pot and I have plans for orange tulips amongst them. That will bring some early warmth next year.

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A blog about my gardening exploits to inspire, even if its looking like its all about go wrong. (Which it does, alot)

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