It's been a mixed bag with weather this week, so nice dry and dare I saw it, sunny days, mixed with storms sleet and hail. I've put my martock beans from Heywayne of the Grapevine forum into the cold greenhouse though. They are supposed to be hardy, so as soon as I saw a little shoot I popped them out. I only planted 6 to start, but I've got the other 8 under the kitchen table until the germinate, then out they can go too. I'll get them into the driveway garden opnce I can get the ground ready.
We've been eating leaves off the lettuce I grew under the lights. They can downstairs to the kitchen windowsill due to pressure of space, and it is cconvenient just to take a few leaves. They won't keep us in salad as such, but it lovely to have started eating something grown this year. I've just finished up the beetroots, and think I will try putting some seeds in modules to get them started off for this year's crop.
Besides the beans, I also put some peas to soak, and once they had shown signs of germination I put them into the rectangle plastic boxes the dishwasher tablets come in. They are not that deep, and I know peas do put their roots down, but I plan to put them into the allotment garden as soon as possible, maybe protected by fleece for a bit. The pigeons seem to be back in force, and have pecked my spring cabbage, althought the kale looks OK. The sprouts are still a bit small, but I'm going to start picking them next weekend anyway I think.
Andy severely pruned the mahonia tree on Wednesday at the allotment garden; it's now safe and I've got much more space to work. We took a whole car load of branches to the tip, but I've had a text from Chris saying it looks fantastic, so as long as he's happy I haven't wrecked his garden that's fine. I dug over half of it after the pruning session, the soil was damp but crumbly, not like mine at home which is still so wet a fork just ends up with lumps of clay attached. The broad beans look a bit the worse for wear, but I haven't lost many, and some are making new shoots from the base too, so fingers crossed for a good harvest. The garlic and onions look fine, and not that many weeds yet, mainly cleavers showing itself so far.
I dug up the rhubarb and found the middle of the rown was rotten, so I split it into 3 bits, and hopefully they will grow better. I am taking one piece to the allotment garden, hopefully today, but I can hear the rain beating on the windows as I type, even though the sun is out, so it might need to wait. I also tried moving the raspberry canes that were in the wrong place, but they didn't come up with much root so I don't know if they will take. It did talk about snow though, so I suppose rain is better, unless we were to get so much we get snowed in.
The snowdrops are well underway now, with 3 definite clumps established. The wild primroses are blooming away, cushions of pale yellow; a lovely sight. I need to winter wash the trees soon. It's an organic mix of oils that dissolves insect eggs, so sounds a good idea, what with the population of greenfly I had last year. I bought a sulphur candle for the greenhouse, so I feel that besides the clean(ish) glass, there shouldn't be any nasties lurking around. The peach and lemon trees are now inside; the lemon had one lemon left, in the centre where it was more protected from the cold and snow. I'm hopeful the tree will survive; I should take better care of it. The peach tree may have some flower buds on a couple of branches. I do hope so, and that I can get a peach to maturity. If I can, we can see if it's worthwhile keeping the tree. I did get some bordeaux mixture to treat it for peach leaf curl, because it is late coming undercover, and the spores of the fungus might already have attacked the unfurling leaves.
I better close this post now, the dreaded marking awaits due to some technical difficulties earlier in the week. I do want to post again later though!
Vicky's Ice Cream rose is also showing signs of the buds swelling, so that will need a quick prune. I easily gets too tall each year for the washing line anyway, so I have to take it down drastically each spring. It is a hybrid tea though, so hard pruning suits it.