Websites say just keep it in doors in a jar of water. Last time I did that a bunch of sneaky bugs had hidden their eggs in a way my casual run under the tap did not remove. So now I’m freezing it. Mostly I use it for tea, and presumably the hot water will defrost it immediately.
Unfortunately, my croton did not survive. I couldn’t rid it of the spider mites and eventually (after a number of tries) we had to move it to the conservatory for fear that there’d be spider mites wandering around my kitchen. From there, it was even more neglected. It lost all its leaves and gave up.
I didn’t even want to recycle the soil, so I had to put it in the bin. I’m not quite sure where spider mites live, but if it’s within the soil I don’t want to put that in my recycling bin nor my garden compost.
I have a small shrub in my office whose flowers had begun to wilt faster than I expected. I used the “Picture This” app to see if it could tell me if I’d over or underwatered it. Turns out, it was dying because of the small, white bugs which had made its home on the leaves. (I was quite impressed that the application spotted this, as I didn’t with my own eyes.)
I Google around for how these bugs managed to get into my house and office. Both parasites seem to come from the same place: they probably came from the shop with them already. Eggs, babies, or just well hidden and in small number. It’s not likely that a pregnant spider mite found my kitchen and the single plant that they’re interested in in there.
This has sort of put me off growing potted plants. However, croton seeds are purchased by the 100g increment an cost £15 for them. I just want one seed…
We woke up this morning to find this guy covered in dozens of the tiniest spiders didn’t seen. A spider mum must have had her eggs in here.
I’ve spent some time this afternoon cleaning it out with a couple cotton buds. In the rain, no less.
Whilst I’ll be the first to admit that I let this grass get out of hand, it’s not looking like I’ll get this done today.
The ground is still too wet. The grass too long. It all gets chewed up in the blades. I stopped when I noticed smoke..!
Unsure if that means it’s broken, but it’s going back into the shed for now!
We’ve taken to calling this area of the garden the “focus area” as it’s the only area of the garden I’m actively trying to keep clear. Daily I’m out here plucking grass or other weeds I don’t recognise. And still they come.
But we’re not talking about weeds today, I want to show off how great these globe thistles are! Theres three in this picture. The two left most are standing tall. The right most one is a bit squashed due to a fallen bird (a sad story for another time, maybe). They’re shooting right up and I couldn’t be more pleased.
The lavender you see there is neither dying nor growing. I’d really love to dig it up again and see if it’s bothered taking root or if it’s still kept itself pot bound.
Also in focus are some marigolds that have managed to stand themselves up. These haven’t grown anywhere near the speed that the greenhouse one have. They’ve mostly filled out, rather than growing upwards, which is fine by me.
One of the things we loved about the house when buying it was that there was a tree house. In fact, when the surveyor looked around, he suggested that the home owner at the time remove it before we buy it because it’s potentially not entirely safe, yadda yadda.
We emailed our estate agent and requested that the seller absolutely not remove the tree house.
It proudly flies a … sort of… Welsh flag. We’ll eventually get around to changing it, but our current flags are mostly too large.
It is quite sturdy. I’ve sat up there reading at lunch times. Tim likes to stand atop it and survey our lands.
The wood needs treating (or replacing) in some places, but that will be an adventure for another time.
I’m also on the lookout for a more appropriate chair…
This isn’t the first time I’ve seen a “good” deal and gotten in trouble for it.
This watering can was three whole British pounds from Morrisons and is worth… well, probably £3.
I bought it because my current watering can only has a single spout. This isn’t good when I’m trying to not drop many litres per second on my tender plants. The spout here creates a lovely rainfall effect which was exactly what I wanted.
However, in the few days I’ve been using it, it’s gone wrong in every way that it could have.
The white plastic head has fallen off. It’s gotten jammed with a few petals. The entire spout has come off. The thin plastic of the can nearly buckles whilst I was holding it (admittedly unusually).
The worth of buying this is that I’ve realised some things to look for in my future purchases.
- The top handle and side handle is very important.
- The spout needs to not block easily.
- The spout needs to not fall off.
- It needs to be fillable without my needing to get my hands wet when dipping it into my water bucket.
(More plastic ceiling, honestly.)
Remember a while ago I started planting some seedlings into pots? It looks like they’re just about out growing my single level greenhouse.
You can see them here pushing right up against the plastic. Being in that much contact with the wet surface probably isn’t good for them, so my next project will have to be graduating them to big plant school; the soil.
Many of the nasturium look like this. Long, with very few off shoots. I’ve no idea if this is their natural look, or a symptom of miniture greenhouse growth. Nonetheless, I’ve given it a deep drink of water that’ll hopefully allow it to perk up.
The marigolds are looking brilliant. I’ll be moving all of these into the ground quite soon.
On my kitchen window sill has ben a group of herbs for a while, each growing reasonably so long as I remembered to water them. Chives, two batches of basil, mint, and some coriander.
The basil had been living in the same pot or so long that the soil level had visibly decreased. Instead of adding more soil, I decided it might be a nice idea to fill up one of the big pots I have and put them all outside together. (I don’t cook with these herbs very often, and so them being outside doesn’t hinder me too frequently.)
The mint seems to have taken root quickly, and is growing great. The chives – though very few in number – are also looking good. Better than in the pot, actually.
The coriander was actually browning in the pot. This all went away once I potted it outside.
It seems that the basil had been affected the most – the worst – to be point of nearly dying. The tips are blackened on some of them, others have browned and lost much of the beautiful green.
I mentioned this to one of the smartest of allotmentists I know and he immediately identified the problem; I took them outside too quickly. The kitchen is actually very sunny, but theres still a pane of glass between the sun and the herbs. Outside though, the temperature isn’t regulated at all and the sun is direct and day long.
I should have realised this because they even look burnt.
They’ve been out there for a while now. I’m hoping that it will settle in after the next harvest (which I’ll likely immediately toss into the compost).
You live and you learn.
I’m including grass in that too; I only cut this two (or three) weeks ago. How is it this long again already?
One issue I have with this much grass is that it ends up almost entirely filling my garden waste bin. As its wet, the moisture all gathers at the bottom of the bin. I suppose this calls for very careful cutting of the grass the same week as the bins are taken away, otherwise it globs together and refuses to budge from the swampy bottom.
These unknown weeds are actually quite pretty. However, they’ve managed to amass themselves in force, now sixty, maybe seventy centimetres high. Culling them properly is taking me so long. I’m half thinking of just strimming them back and putting off removing them at the root until next year. However, that comes with the obvious disadvantage of not being able to use the soil they’re in right now for fear of them competing with whatever I chose to plant there.
This embarrassment is right at the back of our garden. The incineration bin is there only because we’ve not yet got a way of disposing of it. It’s ornamental by way of awaiting an empty enough bin. Those weeds beside it though, are horridly high. This area of the garden isn’t one I’ve yet found the time to touch. This feels like many evenings of work right here.
You see how the right side of the picture fades into darkness? That’s because that part of the garden is banked very steeply into the next door neighbour’s garden. A spot that I’ll have to work on, but maybe tethered to Tim in a bungee harness, or something.