Monday, 1 March 2010

Jayne's Topical Tips

Jobs for March
Continue to sow seeds of vegetable and flowers remembering to sow a few extra for our plant sale please! Indoor sowing of herbs can be started in pots or trays, such as borage, coriander, marjoram, sorrel and lemon verbena - cover the seeds with some vermiculite. Deadhead daffodils as they fade. Delphiniums will provide cuttings, take 3-inch cuttings from below the soil and insert into gritty compost. Any further pruning required for roses should be completed this month. Herbaceous and perennial plants can be split and potted up ready for the plant sale in May! Hoe weeds regularly before they get too large and be vigilant for slugs and snails now that plants are coming into growth. Potatoes can be planted as soon as the ground is suitable. Remember you can warm the soil by using a cloche or some plastic so you can get your seedlings out slightly earlier.

Jayne's Topical Tips

Jobs for February
Rhubarb can be covered with a pot to force early stalks. Sow beetroot, peppers, chillies, broad beans, spinach, summer cabbage, calabrese and lettuce in trays or pots. Onion sets, shallots and garlic can be sown outside when the ground is workable. Crop parsnips, leeks, cabbages, kale and swiss chard.
Parsnips can be sown now if it's warm enough as they need a long growing season. The parsnip seed can be germinated on slightly dampened paper towel, then you'll know if the seed is viable before you put them in the soil.
Apply a general fertiliser to the ground. Cut back cane and fruit bushes. Autumn fruiting raspberry canes can be cut to ground level and mulched. Lime can be added to brassica beds. Potatoes can be put in egg boxes to chit. Snow drops can be divided whilst green. Remember to get your lawnmower serviced ready for the new season. Protect any blossom on fruit trees from frost. Spray against peach leaf curl. Clean and disinfect the greenhouse if not already done and remove any dead leaves from plants to prevent disease.