Sunday, 29 April 2012

Last year and this year


This is how my greenhouse was looking on 4th May last year. I'm not even going to attempt to go out and take a photo today, but as you can imagine, things look rather different this year. I can hardly believe that this time last year, I had already planted everything into their final pots, and everything looks at least 10 times as big as it does this year.

This year, most of my tomato and chilli seedlings (it would be pushing it to describe them as plants just yet) are huddled in the conservatory, trying to keep warm enough to continue growing. I did have them out in the greenhouse, but they were not doing anything. The few things I can't quite fit into the conservatory are zipped up inside the placky greenhouse or inside the coldframe, both within the greenhouse, but they are still not warm enough. According to the thermometer it went down to about 3 degrees last night.  I sowed all my squash/cucumber/courgette seeds about a week and a half ago, but as yet, no sign of germination. I should have waited. When, oh when, are we going to get some nice warm growing weather?

Down on the plot, things are just about ticking over. I sowed some spinach, chard and lettuces a few weeks ago and they are looking pretty sorry for themselves. I have also sowed some beetroot, but I can't really see anything that is definitely a beetroot seedling yet. Even the weeds are struggling slightly! On the plus side, my bee-friendly flower seedlings are doing fine, and the first early potatoes have come through. I also spotted  parsnip seedlings yesterday. I pre-chitted the seed, which I think helps a lot.

I am trying to drum up some support and enthusiasm at the Allotment Association for bee and biodiversity-friendly schemes. Another committee member is quite keen to sow some flower areas, and I have the task of organising a talk on the subject at our allotment open day during National Allotment Week. I have e-mailed the local Friends of the Earth group but no reply as yet. If anyone has any ideas about who I could contact, please let me know.

7 comments:

Damo said...

Cold and miserable sums it up. Ever the optimist I sowed some mediterrenean herbs today!

Rachael said...

Good luck with those Damo. According to BBC weather there may be some sunshine on offer tomorrow!

Jo said...

It's supposed to be a lovely day tomorrow, I can't quite see it myself, the rain woke me up this morning and it hasn't let up since. I can't believe how much further on everything was last year, the weather does play a major part in making things grow.

elaine rickett said...

I know what you are going through - everything in my greenhouse is just about hanging on but outside there is no sign of any of the seed coming through - maybe I'll have to re-sow. To be honest we had better weather in the winter.

Rachael said...

The weather is just so unpredictable at the moment isn't it? After that lovely warm March I was expecting a repeat of last year. However if one thing is certain it is that you can't expect anything any more. I won't be at all surprised if we start getting frosts in June and July!

Soilman said...

Looks like March and April swapped weather. This is AWFUL, and it's really irritating me. The two rows of carrots I sowed three weeks ago haven't appeared and clearly aren't going to... too cold.

I haven't even dared sowed the tender crops yet. No point. Nothing much germinates until it's regularly above 12 degrees.

I can't remember a spring as cold and wet as this one. It's grim.

Rachael said...

You are probably very wise to wait Soilman, I have sowed everything, except for beans, but I think I may have been a bit hasty..as usual. However I am optimistic for an improvement by the middle of the month!