Mid March tasks

It’s busy busy here in the garden when time and weather allows. While I’ve done some early seeds, I’ve avoided the main batch of sowing as it’s simply too cold. However I have been busy doing other things. Let me show you using the #six-on-Saturday meme format from Mr. Propagator. It’s an interesting format to use, and he has some guidelines for us to follow. More importantly he is very encouraging of others, whether they’re new to the world of writing, or like myself, if you need a little structure to get some words down on paper, particularly at this busy time of year. As an avid reader of many many garden blogs, I can only encourage you to write and share your experiences.

So firstly, there’s the potting on of spring bulbs, corms and tubers. Apart from Dahlia, and some Begonia, this is an aspect of gardening I haven’t engaged much in over recent years. I’m tempted to say it’s economics based and that I can’t afford it at this time of year, but the truth is I’ve been very focused on spending my pocket money on Dahlia tubers. And, after seeing some beautiful Gladioli last year, I made a bit in my diary to make some purchases this year, so watch this space for future photos of spring bulbs in flower.

Next, linked to the first one, is the purchasing and potting of a Lilium regale. Why is this so special? Well, if you were to ask me what is one of my favorite spring bulbs for flower scent, then I’d say this is it. So isn’t it strange I haven’t had it in the garden for at least five years! I’ve had and have plenty of other Lilium bulbs, but not this one, so this is the start of changing that. It’s only one bulb at the moment, as they are relatively expensive here, however it’s a change in the right direction.

Next task was repotting older Lilium bulbs. Yes, this is something we’ve to remember to do at least every couple of years. You see I grow all my Lilium bulbs in pots, as they just get demolished you slugs in the spring if I leave them in the soil from year to year, and that’s if the damp and cold don’t get them first. So, it’s easier and far more successful to grow them in pots. It also means the winter care is easy as I just turn the pots on their side once the plants die back, and place them under the staging in the greenhouse, where they dry out over winter very nicely. Then in spring, some years I too dress the tops of the pots with fresh compost, and other years I repot them using a lovely rich compost. Of course Lilium bulbs like to be planted deep in pots, so use deeper containers where you can.

Speaking of tubers, here’s the early potatoes I chitted in January and brought on under cover, or indoors when the weather was very cold. They currently sit in my glasshouse awaiting planting on, where I have a little kerosene heater that I put on when night time temperatures look like they’re set to fall below 7c, which has been a lot of nights recently (forecast is for -1c tonight)! What I’ve prepared for planting them on is a one tonne bag, one third filled with homemade compost, after being placing it in the greenhouse, which is not heated. It’s all set to plant these guys, just waiting for this cold snap to pass. Once they’re planted they’ll be covered with garden fleece to keep them snug.

Moving away from bulbs and tubers, I’ll mention seeds and seedlings. While the temperatures are just too cold to sow my main lot of seeds, I do have some things coming along quite nicely. For instance, here’s my onions that I’ve been pricking out (a term used for potting them on from their seed tray). While I have some directly down into modules, there are more germinated in a tray that I’ve been a little hesitant to move, for temperature reasons. However, they have gotten quite large now, so I’ve moved them to the next stage and will keep them temporarily where they’ll be nice and snug (by the potatoes above), which means there’ll be some night time heat when needed.

Finally, I’m also busy ensuring my YouTube channel has at least a weekly update. And this requires planning and getting the vid clips done, much like ensuring I’m blogging at least every couple of weeks. Time has to be set aside for filming the vid clips, putting them together and editing where needed. While I don’t consider it work, as I’m always happy to yabber about plants and gardening, it is inconvenient to have to stop yourself in flow of a task and capture what’s going on. It is important for me to do this, as this is my final year here in this garden, so really want to record the goings on, the successes, learnings points (my code for massive failures) and the over all garden atmosphere I’ve created over the past six years. This is the link to my current vid clip: https://youtu.be/pvSN3B81vPo

I’m sure there’s a way to have this appear as the video, some of ye might tell me how to do this.

As always, thanks for joining me here today, and do subscribe if you’re inclined, otherwise drop by now and again to say hello.

All the best, Hugh

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18 thoughts on “Mid March tasks

  1. You’ve just reminded me that I have dahlia tubers in the greenhouse that need potting up. I think that can wait for a sunny day, though! Your potatoes are looking great!

    1. Thanks Ali, yes, we’re all waiting for those sunny days … Lol
      Thanks, yes, they are – almost ready for their next stage when this cold wind blows over. All the best, Hugh

  2. The first picture is very beautiful! I hope you have a good early potato crop and if I were you, I’ll put the big pot in my garage for a few days … Here too, all the plants need to be protected again and that’s my afternoon job!

  3. I’m still in the brigade that lifts lilies in autumn, as I love seeing them amongst the other flowers. However, you may convert me on this matter – an easy method that probably results in more bulbs surviving winter plus, I could always sneak the pots in between the plants. Those pratai are a little bit of wow, there.

    1. Thanks Lora, impressed with your use of Irish. Yes, I suppose it’s experience that has me having the bulbs in pots. I do put a layer of grit over the top to keep our little vine weevil friends out …

      1. And the little red lily bugs? Have you a weapon against them? (As to Irish, I married into it & tho it’s Dublin, they’re always pratai, never potatoes, unless I want retribution from my mammy-in-law. Death would be preferable.)

      1. “Lilium lancifolium is a species of lily native to eastern Guam, China, Korea and Japan. This species is commonly called the “Tiger Lily”, synonymous with Lilium tigrinum. ” (Pacific Bulb Society) I’ve found these lilies very easy to grow in the garden and I do not lift them in winter, although we can get snow and temperatures below freezing. They attract butterflies like mad.

      2. Yes, known it to be native to countries in Asia. And yes, it’s easy to grow once the conditions are right. However, slug damage is the reason I grow them in pots, as well as cold winter soil, and the ability to give them some tlc 😊

  4. It has been so hard not buying anything yet this year. I was really pleased with my £1 Dahlia tubers last year from Wilko they were an amazing success. Hoping after Easter I can start to make inroads into some summer flowers.

    1. Hey Ronnie 👋🏼
      Yes, it’s definitely a different year. I have some bulbs done and some more to do. Lots of Dahlias of course … Lol. Stay warm and well, Hugh

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