Greenish antics of Nige to grow, build and make a gr8 world

Greenish antics – frugal, growing, trying and sharing

casualties and new beginnings… May 31, 2007

Filed under: Gardening — Canvas Summer Nige @ 10:52 pm

Quick post late at night just cos I’ve not been in the habit of chucking some thoughts down.

 We have casualties – something has come along and nibbled the nastursims that were doing nicely well.  gits.  and some carrot leaves.
nibbled nastursims1 and nibbled nastursims2

but generally things are still coming on well – potatoes especially and we even saw one close to the surface level.  (must earth up more actually.. – note to self)

So mourn the eaten veg. 

Was v satisfying to put the greenhouse together [will write distinct post for it] – same level as diggin the allotment patches.  mad how overgrown that whole garden is now – will also add a before/after shot of it now it is in full early summer flow!!!  mucho nettles and sticky weed.  ah well.


Teaser for more interesting post approach….. May 18, 2007

Filed under: Uncategorized — Canvas Summer Nige @ 12:02 am

Just thought that I’d add that I am intending for this blog to not just be a dull record of plants growing.  The intention is that I also post about deeper reflections on or while partaking in the activities here captured……

So will aim to offer some thoughts soon and from time to time.  Ok? Feedback welcome…!


from seedlings to veritable trees! May 17, 2007

Filed under: Allotment,Gardening — Canvas Summer Nige @ 11:59 pm

Quick update late at night, potatoes are storming Potatoes at about 5 weeks

Emas peas, marigolds & nasturtiums are also storming as well as an overwhelming array of tomato seedlings.  The herbs are also fighting on against the bindweed and the gale like weather of the last few weeks.  Sunshine predicted for a few days now so hopefully should get some good strength.

 Ema also saw some rabbits making a run towards the allotment today so we think we might see some casualties at some point.

Final update- Sister provided us with some cucumber and sweetcorn plants and these have gone in now.  I’ll aim to take pic of the whole allotment patch this weekend to show how it’s come on.


Help…. I’ve got a growth May 10, 2007

Filed under: Allotment,Gardening — Canvas Summer Nige @ 11:24 pm

It is that easy.  You just stick stuff in the ground, water a bit and it grows…. well, maybe my early digging and prep efforts helped but then again it’s also still early days.

 BUT – we have strong shoots through for the carrots AND the onions AND the potatoes!   shoots appear

Within 3 weeks of planting (from seed for the carrots) –

I thought the carrots were just grassy weeds coming through but in fact they’ve come through great!  Ema has even thinned them so we must be doing well.  Again, we’ll have to see if the monsoon like May weather does any damage, or if we get an influx of rabbits or slugs or frogs or anything else trying to eat them up, but if it all goes crap from here at least we can say we got stuff to grow. 

It does feel really good, though a long way before being able to feel like we are proving self-reliance and possibilities to any degree.  It will mean that soon I will be able to claim frugal eating as a keywood in the blog!


Get them taties in the brown….

Filed under: Allotment,Gardening — Canvas Summer Nige @ 10:55 pm

The digging prep had been completed and I was impatient to get something in to see if – in fact – it was that easy to grow stuff as a recently read biography about clueless blokes allotmenting had found.  Plus a freecycler posted some free unwanted chitted potatoes and onion sets.  It was too good a motivation to pass up.

So picking up the 4 potatoes (bit shrivelled looking and highly expected to die) and onions, plus grabbing a pack of carrot seeds we got stuck in to the awaiting allotment site 1 – patch 2.  The carrots went in as two rows bounded each side and in between with a row of onions as recommended by various sources (anti carrot fly).  I’d proposed this section of patch 2 as for carrots as it seemed the loosest soil to leave uncomposted.

With an over-enthused ceremony by Nige, they were put to their earthy bed.  All was happy until Ema pointed out that they probaly wouldn’t be ready until September!

First planting composite    First planting composite 2


First greenish growth – herbs

Filed under: Gardening — Canvas Summer Nige @ 10:48 pm

Slight change in tack to present the birth of green growth in nigeylife.  Seed prep started with a kitchen-herb kit that Ema had bought me.  It was a little plastic house with 6 small tubs and 6 packets of different herb seeds.

So an excited Nige in early April grabbed the kit and started out trying to germinate.  After obsessive focus morning and night after about a week the first shoots appeared in two of the pots, followed by other two pots a few days later.  These were then transferred to the bedroom window sill during a fantastic sunny period of April and more obsessive attention.  The first the come on strong was the basil and the parsely.  After around four weeks the first crop was sprouting nicely and ready to plant out soon.

First seeds - ‘erbs

There were however, still two pots that had failed to sprout at all! I think these were Chive and Coriander and to this day (now May) the Chive is still not making any kind of appearance!  Further crops however are coming on and all will shortly be heading out to join the first brothers and sisters in the top planter in the garden.  Just currently hoping that the crazy monsoon weather that has hit us now won’t batter those already out (haven;t got round to building adequate closhes or cold frames!


Diggin’ days

Filed under: Allotment — Canvas Summer Nige @ 10:37 pm

Well to get started on the story of the allotment developing….

The before shots in the previous post show the muddy waste land that was destined to become an allotment area for us.  A little bit of planning started it off with background reading and chats with a few gardening minded friends, some procurement of bagged mushroom compost (cheers Mike!), the gleeful application of Nigey-Compost (2 years of food scraps and gentle toil) and the smelly trips in the micra to a local horse stables.  The Micra still smells now of horse manure some two months later.

I thought it might be a good bit of maths practice to get Thais involved in plotting out the allotment so I came up with some questions around measurements, areas, and volumes of compost.  She got stuck into it and then Harry and Thais got out there to mark out the areas on ‘Allotment Site 1′ with garden string and pegs.

This led the way for Nigey to get diggin’ with the plan to roughly loosen the earth and weed (grass starting to develop heavily) – first stage.  Then second stage to more finely weed and add a top covering of manure/compost.  Third stage to begin a double dig process.

[Pic – ] Working and toiling

 The plan was all based on roughly 1.2 by 5 meter patches, and the double digging seemed manageable in thirds at a time per patch.

I left one half of a patch with no compost as I read about carrots shouldn’t be on recently manured soil.

Bizarrely, of 4 patches on Allotment Site 1, patch 2 was ready first (with half no compost/maure) then patch 1.  As I write this (May) Patch 3 is ready for double digging and patch 4 is only at basic stage 1.