Sunday, 20 May 2007

The birds and the bees! 20.05.07

Welcome visitors to the garden are the hungry birds. We have 2 bird feeders with peanuts, and another with sunflowers, as well as a couple of hanging fatballs.
Our regular visitors include a pair of Blue Tits ( nesting in a neighbours garden), a pair of Ring Necked Doves, Sparrow's, Starling's, Blackbird's, and the occassional Thrush. Not only are they a joy to watch, they can often be seen hopping through the veg patch in search of bugs - just what I need. We also get a steady stream of Bee's in the garden, something which we are keen to promote, as they are excellent pollinators. We are trying now to introduce more "colour" to try and increase the population, and we are also looking forward to the arrival of Ladybirds to do their work on the blackfly population!
My maincrop spuds (v. King Edward) that i planted at the start of the month began to show on monday of this week, and as you can see have put on a lot of growth this week. I have watered them daily ( reducing the risk of scab) and have weeded / hoe'd around them.
They are a way behind my earlies, but that is exactly how I planned them to be. This way I will get a successional crop to my earlies.
Talking of which, they too are coming on in leaps and bounds. The first earlies (v. Rocket ) are now in bud and I hope to see some flowers within the week.
I'm still checking them for leaf damage daily but, touch wood ( my forehead!), it seems they're ok at the moment.

My Runner Beans have now exceeded 5' in height, as you can see in the picture as they climb over the crossbeam and upwards!
There are plenty of flowers set lower down and many more buds appearing. I water these daily, and feed with a tomorite type liquid feed once a week.
Also, if you look closely you will see that I had to attach cable ties to hold the canes together, as the birds had pecked through my binding string - I guess for nest building!.

The broad beans (v. Bunyard Exhibition) are growing well too, and are in excess of 4' tall. Glad I put the canes in !.
Although I've regularly tied new growth in, some of it was covering the veg in a neighbouring bed, so I have trimmed back some of the growth, and tidied the plants up a bit.
Blackfly have returned, so I am washing the plants daily with a Fairy Liquid solution to keep them at bay!

As pic shows, I've started on the plot extension (Mark 2) as I had run out of room. I've used the same materials as before, but intend only to fill the beds this year with soil improver, then cover with a black mulch fabric ready for a late winter sowing.
I'll keep you posted on this.

The toms (v.Moneymaker) have settled into their new growing locations well. Despite a couple of cooler nights this week, their growth continues un checked.

Indoors, my seedlings for the Gardener's Delight are growing on well, and from today will be moved to a full light position in the conservatory.

Our garden chairs had a new lease of life yesterday, as Jen & Sammie gave them a couple of coats of preservative.

They look brand new, with a lovely rosy hue. The preservative was only £5 for 5 Litres so well worth doing. Table next !!!

I captured this image at 7.00am this morning.

Just thought it looked lovely, so decided to share it with you all.

All crops are still looking healthy, and I'm slowly reaping the rewards.

And so to the final picture for this week, me standing back and admiring my handiwork!

There's is still a multitude of things to do, but doing a little on a regular basis seems to be having the desired effect.

Cant wait to dig up those veggies !

Take care folks, hope you enjoyed my update, and keep your comments coming in.

See you next week.