Sowing a few things, bit of an experiment

Today I sprinkled a few violet seeds around the... "snowdrop bed", then sprinkled some compost on top. Same with some Eryngium seeds around the thyme and rosemary heap.

Also sprinkled spinach seeds around the empty (ish, it has some weeds...) bed where the courgettes were, and dug in some random pea seeds I collected this year (as an experiment), and some more chard seeds sprinkled in there and the bed next to the tomatoes. These chard seeds I got from a pot where I planted some this year and let it bolt.



Loki posing in the new snowdrop patch
I've just planted the 40 snowdrop bulbs that I bought in the Kew gardens. They were a mix: 19 nivalis, 7 flore pleno, 6 elwesii and 8 ikariae.

I cleared a bit the ground of grass, then I planted the tallest (elwesii and ikariae) towards the back (towards the rosebush and the raspberries), then mixed the nivalis with the flore pleno and planted them around the rest of the area.


New rosebushes

I received these at work earlier than expected, being on vacation right now, so I had to go pick them up. They've been in water overnight+, a few hours completely submerged and then overnight with the branches sticking out of the water, despite the instructions I was apprehensive to leave everything submerged for so long.

Today I dug 3 holes and planted them, adding cow+chicken dried manure (can't find the rose fertiliser, perhaps it was finished)) and "bodemverbeteraar" (I think this is just compost). They're about 60-70 cm apart, but I only used my kneeling pad to measure distances ;P

The rosebushes I ordered from David Austin were a pair of Margaret Merrill and one Lark ascending. I wanted The nun but could not find it this year, boo.

Margaret Merrill, photo from DA
Floribunda. Dainty, high-centred, white buds with a satin-pink sheen. Exceptionally fragrant.
Up to 1x1 m

The Lark Ascending, photo from DA
Shrub Rose. A tall, airy shrub with clusters of fragrant, semi-double blooms.
Bears clusters of light apricot, semi-double, cupped blooms. The fragrance varies from tea to myrrh.
Vigorous and exceptionally healthy with tall, airy growth.
Up to 1.5x1.2 m

I planted them in a triangle layout, the Lark which supposedly grows taller and more leggy at the back. The lilac I planted last year is a bit behind and to the right.

As I dug the holes I dug out a few small bulbs, they look like muscari perhaps, and a couple of slightly bigger and darker ones, I have no idea what they were. I planted them back around the roses.



I have very bad memory, but since I have not been updating I'll try to remember what has been going on this year.

We planted tomatoes: muchamiel, montserrat, mallorquí and cherry which were started by Pim's parents, plus marmande and floradade which were started by us, and it seems both are determinate while the others are not. Ah, we also started yellow pear shaped cherry tomatoes. Marmande are the most tastiestest tomatoes I've ever eaten, by far the best of the lot, but they are very sensitive to drought / bottom rot.

We also planted some leftover plants in the middle of the garden, they did very well, growing more squat and wider, and we harvested, until it started to rain heavily, when they just died. So success for this would really depend on the year, this summer started very warm and dry which helped all plants get established (as long as we remembered to water), but then it got very rainy and dark by the end of summer. Autumn has been relatively mild, apart from a few days of cold, and in fact we're still occasionally harvesting tomatoes, there are a few to pick right now. They are no longer good though, more like bad supermarket tomatoes. By the way the yellow tomatoes are pretty but completely tasteless, very productive though.

For next year I'd go for more marmande, mallorquí (not very productive but nice flavour), leave more space for the regular cherries (at least two), and perhaps get an Aveve coeur de boeuf which was pretty good last year.

Some tomatoes:

25 august

29 august

30 august

5 september

10 september

13 september
11 october

28 october
8 november

Peppers. I think we should give up. Not the right soil or conditions (sun) in our garden. We had like 6 plants and ended up eating one green pepper, originally there were several but we waited to see if they would get red, but they rotted. Pim's parents got loads (sandy soil, more sun).

29 august

Celery also doesn't do good, again, Pim's parent's plants are huge and ours are barely grown in a few months.

29 june, when we put them out

Beans and peas do great if they ever sprout. So far I haven't had any luck with pole beans or peas, but the small plants have done very well. I got a decent harvest of peas in a small patch, then planted "speedy" beans at about July 10, harvested the first beans exactly two months later. Excellent. I should do the same next year, in a different patch.

21 june
26 june

10 august

29 august

Collecting pea seeds

10 september

20 september

I planted small carrots and beets (some seen above). They grew sort of ok, but the ornamental sorts are a bit of a gimmick, fun for a bit, then too much work for little result. I think carrots are not worth it, I don't put anything on the soil or the plants except fertiliser, and cut worms make a mess. We did eat quite a bit of them but it was too much work cutting out the damage, especially on such tiny carrots. Our soil is also probably too heavy for long carrots so I think I'm not gonna try again next year.
The beets did quite well so I think we can try regular beets next year.

june, thirsty!


Radishes do well, a few holes here and there but ok. The problem is that I always plant too many. In this case I think the ribbon seeds are worth it, but I have to remember to plant a tiny, tiny bed of them, and every other week.


Rosemary and lemon vervain do great. Sage does too well, I had to move it to the back because it was hogging the other herbs.

Dwarf oregano, great tiny
july harvest of verbena
Pineapple sage does excellent and grows as tall and me (totally did not expect this, I thought it was just a fancy sage), I'll have to have this into account next year. Seems it's annual. Right now, for a while already, it has lots of red flowers.

2 november

8 november

The borage was a huge hit with the bees and bumblebees, they LOVE it. I love it too. I think I have bought white variety seeds for next year. They've already self-seeded, right now there's a few small plants making do.  Nasturtiums did as usual too well, but they're easy to pull out. They're even growing atop the compost heap... I have to find edible stuff to do with them.


We have parsnips, they look very nice and healthy, but we haven't dug out any root yet. Next week I think I'll try. No frost in our near future so I am not going to wait.

The strawberries as usual did meh, but they are a bit more established now.



This time the courgettes did very well, the pumpkins meh. One fruit each of uchuki and buttenut (two butternut plants). The sweet dumpling took FOREVER to sprout, then I forgot to plant it... resul of one diminutive fruit late in autumn already and it has rotted. Be more careful next year. Add more water and fertiliser, which I think was the problem, with the dry start of spring we had.






An apple tree suspected dead sprouted new leaves at the beginning of autumn. We got two (but tasty!) apples from the older tree. The other cherry tree is quite certainly dead (Early rivers I believe). The medlar seems ok. Olive tree has minuscule olives, getting black now. The two figs have lost their leaves by now but look ok. They will spend the frosts inside, but we'll plant them in full ground next year.
Both grapevines seem ok, but the one in full ground seems to be doing better.

29 august


Flower wise, some bulbs I planted I don't know when, sprouted very tall, flat, lily-like leaves, and have been flowering for a month. Pointy white blooms with some purple, some sort of lily I suppose, I should look for any packaging I may still have, or fotos of it here.

We have tiny rosehips in the more developed rose bush. I was not diligent keeping it free of weeds and it was completely swamped in morning glory, which has perished by now. I may just prune it down quite a bit, it grows like crazy even when ignored. Waiting for an arbor...


Just got three more bare root rosebushes from David Austen, two Margaret Merrill and one Lark ascending, they're submerged in water right now. Also got snowdrop mix bulbs in the UK and should plant them ASAP. Also got a potted fern that I should plant as well.

That's all that I remember for now, I should go through FB pictures later and add them... perhaps. Edit: Ok, I just did that... here more pictures that did not fit above: