Air Bug and Bee

There’s a small section of the garden which I’m sort of leaving to do its own thing. There’s actually a large area of the garden that’s currently doing its own thing, but this area of the garden I’m just leaving to be as it likes.

That seemed like the perfect place to put the newest of garden ornament we have; this bug home! It was given to us by Tim’s parents.

We’re both very excited to see what it’ll bring to the garden! Its ground dwelling, so I’m expecting smaller beetles and and bugs which aren’t scared away by the plastic creepy crawlies attached. I’m unsure if it’ll bring many solitary bees, but that’ll be fun if it does!

Regardless of what comes, the hope is that it’ll be filled with predators to pests.

Rehabilitation for Aloe Vera

There were two aloe vera plants in my office just wasting away. I popped a message on the company chat asking who they belong to; a fellow that left almost a year before, so no wonder they were looking worse for wear. I declared that I was taking them, conspicuously enough that I felt like it wasn’t theft anymore.

Now, my only thinking that they’re of the vera variety is that whilst I was lugging one of them back home on the train, one woman said loudly to her husband, “is that an aloe vera?” And I immediately stopped and turned to quiz them. “Well, is it?”

I’m afraid I didn’t take photos of them on arrival. So I’ve no good pictures to show of that. However, lots of the ends were brown and dehydrated. One of them had definitely been overwatered by someone with about as much aloe experience as I have; the soil was sopping.

I allowed the plant sodden plant to dry off in the sun for a day before returning it to its pot. With both of them, I’ve chopped off the brown bits. I didn’t do this on any advice, I just figured a dead bit can’t be helping the plant.

The above all happened a couple of weeks ago.

This weekend I took another look at them. Unfortunately, because I didn’t take photos of them after my lopping I don’t know if the brown pictured is new or not. Nonetheless, I took my trusty scissors to the brown parts again. I also rechecked the roots; Pebbles looks okay, but No Pebbles (the one that was sodden, in fact) definitely has some root rot.

I’m not sure if there are next steps I should take, other than leaving them to see if the deterioration worsens. If it does, I might try changing them from their current soil to a soil with sand or perlite which it might prefer.

I just realised that I’ve once again not taken any decent photos of the plants after cutting them! I’ll add them tomorrow.

The forgotten root

I planted this guy along the same time as I planted a few other things.

The camouflaged root.

The problem is that I’ve completely forgotten what it is. My guess is that’ it’s a phlox. My thinking is is that I bought the phlox and 3 globe thistles (which are growing nicely). These were planted on the 20th Februrary. I’ve since planted two or three more things. This is the only plant that hasn’t bothered growing of the lot. So it must be the odd one out.

It’s possible that this plant died during a March frost. It’s showed no sign of movement. However, gardening is supposed to be teaching me patience, so I shall keep watching it and see what happens.

A beautiful and discovered plant

I know everyone was eagerly awaiting the update to what the mysterious plant was that I was curious about previously.

Well, within moments our family was able to figure it out. Tim’s mum and aunt very quickly pointed out that it is a croton. A collegue of mine was able to figure it out the next day by Googling “plant with green and red leaves”, but sometimes the most obvious key words don’t come to you.

Alongside some rather pale basil, which is probably a topic for another blog post.

Armed with this information, I’ve moved the plant to the window sill which gets light all day. I’ve also started only watering it when the top soil is dry, and then watering it thouroughly (allowing the excess water to drain, not sit).

I’ll also have to look into buying a spray water dispenser, as it apparently likes humidity. Maybe being sprayed with water will trick it into thinking it’s humid.

Transferring the first seedlings

Back in March I added some seeds to my propagator, and some of them had started to grow tall enough to move to a larger pot. Today, I decided to move out the rest of the growers to let me recycle the propagator with another round of seeds.

The sunflowers appear to be growing the best. The peppers did not grow at all – in fact they failed with such a high failure rate it must have been something about the conditions I gave them that they didn’t like. The tomatoes have been moved to larger pots with bambo to climb. This all happened before today, leaving only the nasturtium and remaining marigolds behind.

The first of the videos I hope to add to this blog. It’s entirely out of focus.

Pots one through four has nasturtium in them. Having looked again the the packet, nasturtium looks like it could be grown quite closely together, so I possibly could have gotten away with two in each pot. Number four actually has two nasturtium in, as one was kind of weedy.

In number five I packed a couple of the lesser grown marigolds.

Despite what I said in the video, I didn’t use Black Plastic Pot for the marigolds, but I did pack them all into Grey French Bucket. A smaller vesel, but BPP seemed too big to fill with soil for those tiny plants. The marigolds are tightly packed now, with only a few centimeters between each. I’m assuming that fine. We’ll find out. (“I’m assuming that’s fine… We’ll find out.” should be the tagline of this blog.)

All the repotted plants are now in Tiny Greenhouse.

As a bonus piece of news, as mentioned in the video, I bought a potting table from Wayfair. I think I only paid around £32 for it, so it’s quite cheap. The assembly instructions recommend a drill and two people, but I managed it on my own with only a screwdriver and a bit of creative positioning. It hasn’t fallen over yet.

In the bin!

I’ve never been more excited to have a new bin.* I’m now the proud owner of a brown bin from the council to put my weeds in! Looks at this lovely trio. I couldn’t be more proud of them.

To get them from my council there’s a £30 (or so) a year charge, but I’ve got so many weeds to throw away that this’ll come very much in handy. Especially as we’ve no car to take this kind of rubbish away. (And Tim won’t let me use an incinerator in the garden!)

Maybe don’t do this. There needs to be more drainage.

My only other plan was to “mulch” down the weeds, which I’d heard was a thing. My methodology wasn’t going quite as well as expected though; leaving the weeds under a piece of tarp just made them damp and quite smelly.

*Until today when my bread bin arrived!