About my garden

Monday, 6 February 2017

A vase and a mystery

We've had a change in the weather. I'm not kidding myself that winter is over but things are moving. 
Saturday was the first day this year I spent outside. The sun came out and it felt WARM. Previously I've run out carried out a job at high speed and run back in for a cup of something nice. 
I started clearing round the base of a hedge to remove competition and giving it a good  feed. The cleaned one side of the poly tunnel wall which had gone green over winter. Not the most pleasant of jobs as it involved water dripping down my arm but looks so good now it's done and so much more light is coming in.
Conversly, Sunday was very cold again and though I told myself I'd go out and get busy, it was back to dashing in and out. 

My vase this week is tiny but all silver and pink. 

Thyme 'Silver Posie, Lavender shoots and pink primula. I'm not really one for all the different colour primulas and polyanthus. This one, however, popped up in the grass in our last garden and was so pretty I had to move it to safety. Then it was one of the many plants which moved with us, now a large clump. It must have crossed with a primrose. 
I think it's because it's such a sweet pink and is a classic flower as a child might draw. 

They are not quite there yet but this is what they look like in full bloom.

I know I said I wasn't sowing any seeds until the middle of February, but broad beans are different!
I've used a technique I heard on the radio. UK gardeners may be familiar with Terry Walton. I heard him on the radio sharing his method.
I soaked the beans and then put them in a bag with some damp compost. This is after a few days:

and this about a week:

For the record, they all germinated.
I've potted them into small posts and I'm keeping them inside for now. I've had trouble with mice eating peas and beans so I'm taking no chances. They root out the pea and just leave a wilted shoot on the compost.
I think I'll try peas and sweet peas in the same way. I've germinated them on kitchen paper before but this is probably better.

Finally, a mystery. 
I had tucked some beetroot under the bench in the tunnel last autumn. I've never watered them as I wanted them to store. They did, however, grow leaves and I had picked a very few for salads. 
This week all the leaves have gone.

I don't know what has eaten them. I'm pretty sure it's not slugs and it was too much really for mice or voles. The leaves were 8-10 inches. I've never seen a rabbit in the garden (and don't want to) and there are no droppings,  but we have seen hares nearby and deer so I suspect one of them. The stems are cut off at and angle which is a sign of rabbits apparently.
One of the strangest things is that nothing else has been touched,yet. There is spinach, kale and a few lettuces which you'd think would be attractive. 
You can see new leaves are already starting to grow.  
Any ideas?     

For inspiring and creative vases from around the world visit 'In a vase on Monday' hosted by Cathy from Rambling in the garden. 


  1. Your tiny vase is adorable, Alison! Although I haven't created any tiny vases of my own recently, they've always been among my favorite compositions - they have such charm. I've no experience with either rabbits or deer so I can't provide input on the likelihood that one or the other is your mystery intruder. The main pests here are raccoons, skunks and squirrels. The first 2 are focused on grubs rather than plants but the squirrels here do eat some flowers and, I suspect, may also be responsible for chomping some of my succulents to the ground.

    1. Ah squirrels, I hadn't thought of that. I'm sure it's not raccoons! I've been lulled over the winter, forgetting that garden is a war.

  2. I couldn't quite see what your teeny tiny blooms were in Alison - is it a tiny flower pot? It's ertainly very sweet :) I know what you mean about these coloured primulas, but they are always a welcome splash of colour. Mine rarely look perfect though, as they get pecked, I think by woodpigeons or collared doves. Could it be these that have had your beetroot foliage? Interesting to read about your seed experiments - what a good gernmination rate

    1. It's a shot glass, bought in charity shop for flowers not shots :). Yes it could be birds eating the leaves but they do look chewed rather than pecked. There are plenty of birds around including collard doves. I'm trying to be more observant but of course, I'm not always here.


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