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R.H.S. Growing Succes Talk, A first for the Rhondda Valley and a great success.

Thursday, 18 April 2013

What a good night we had last night at the Maes-yr-Haf Hall, Trealaw.  It was a privilege to be there to hear someone who really knows her subject.  I'm sure anyone who is remotely interested in growing herbs is now hooked.  Personally I'm quite looking forward to visiting Jekka's Herboretum. 

Posted by: at 09:07

R.H.S. Growing Succes Talk

Wednesday, 13 March 2013

The Rhondda Gardening Clubs have an R.H.S. Growing Success Talk on Wednesday 17th April 2013 at 7.15pm at the Maes yr Haf Hall, Brithweunydd Road, Trealaw, Rhondda CF40 2UD  Tickets £5 RHS Members, £6 Non Members. 

The speaker is Jekka McVicar the Herb expert from Alverston, Avon.  Jekka runs a Herb Nursery and has won numerous awards at RHS shows, she is acknowledged as one of the countries herb experts.  The talk will be 'Growing Herbs & Herbs at RHS Shows. 


Tickets from Ivor Mace, 01443 775531.  or send to 2 Mace Lane, Ynyswen, Treorci, Rhondda, CF42 6DS


Jekka's exhibit in the 2007 RHS Hampton Court Palace Flower show, her exhibit was awarded the Tudor Rose Award for best trade stand in show.



Posted by: at 23:17

New Link

Saturday, 09 March 2013

A new link has been added, its to Solufeed's website, this link will take you directly to the Microlife's sales page (Microlife and Antagon have the same beneficial Fungi)  I use this as a base fertiliser when mixing my potting composts.  I use 50% Microlife & 50% Medwyns Complete Base Fertiliser.  This is what I mix:-

60% moss peat

20 grit% Perlite or course

20% Sterilised loam.  

To every bushel (8 gallons) I add 2oz Calcified seaweed, 2oz Ground Limestone, 2oz Medwyns Complete Base Fertiliser, 2oz Microlife. This makes a compost of a John Innes number 1 strength. To make a John Innes number 2 just double the Microlife and Medwyns Complete Fertiliser. Keep the Calcified Seaweed and Ground Limestone unchanged. I never use a John Innes number 3.  After 4 weeks I feed with a Soluble feed at half strength. 

There is a good range of soluble feeds on the Solufeed website.

I've also added a link to Medwyn's of Anglesey and Chemigro a sister company to Solufeed. I'm often asked for a control of Mare's-tail and Japanese Knotweed. Well Chemigro have the weed killers to help you.  They also stock spraying equipment.



Posted by: at 20:18

Progress Report

Saturday, 23 February 2013

The severe cold spell has hampered my progress outdoors.  I would have liked to have pruned my climbing roses and tidied up the mixed border but these will have to wait till it warms up.

In the greenhouse I'm up to date because I've spent a lot of time there because its been so cold out doors.  My Onions & Leeks are beginning to grow away since I potted them on a week or so ago.  I have the sodium lights set to come on at 7.30am till 9.30am and again at 4.30am till 10pm. This ensures it doesn't get too hot around mid day till early afternoon.  The temperature gets down to about 8c at night and when the lights come on it soon raises to around 12c. This encourages the Leeks & Onions to stretch.  It is a phenomena known in horticulture as day diff.  If your temperature raises at day break and for the first 2 hours the plants will stretch, if they have warm nights and cool mornings the will stay stocky.

Of course this is not what we want for chrysanths and its too expensive to heat higher at night and vent in the morning so I spray with a growth regulator called B9.  By upping the auxin level the plants stay stocky.  This certainly helps because shorter plants are much easier to handle.

I've thrown away some chrysanthemum stools to make room for potting the first batch of cuttings.  Next week the last batch of cuttings will go onto the propagation bench.  Once these are taken all the remaining stools will be discarded and I can space out the young potted plants.  Good Light is important.

I have a few plants of Artemisia annua grown from seed sown at the same time as my onions, under lights.  I plan to graft a few chrysanthemums on to them in due course, just for the hell of it and to see what I can produce.

My carnations have been in 5 inch pots for a few weeks now and I've stopped all except for the Joanne's Highlight familly which I usually stop in March.


Onions & Leeks


Cuttings ready to send out

Artemisia annua                                              Young chrysanthemums potted into 9cm clay pots.




Posted by: at 13:24

Onions & Leeks

Friday, 15 February 2013

Yesterday I took the onion and leek plants out of the light cabinet under my propagation bench where they've been under fluorescent lights sinse christmas.  I potted the onions from a 40 cell tray into 9cm pots and the Leeks from 9cm pots into 13cm pots.   I now have them under a sodium lamp that is on a timmer.  It switches on at 8am till 10am then it comes on again at 4.30pm till 10pm.  I find it can be too hot between 10am till 4pm if its sunny. 

Many years ago a fire brigade along with two police officers called at my front gate and asked if the could come through my garden to gain access to the mountain behind my house to atennd to a grass fire.  Of course I said yes.  When the police officer saw the grow light in the greenhouse he said 'what have you got in there mate'  I said would you like to take a look.  I said they're my big onions, he replied.  'Well you are odd mate'  I take it he first thought I was growing cannabis. 

Leeks & Onions under a Sodium Light.

Chrysanthemum Cuttings rooting on the propagator.

All my carnations are now potted.

Posted by: at 19:01

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