Garden update Monday 25th March

Mad March continues – seeds and seedlings abound!

Well March has certainly thrown some winds at us, but finally calm has settled and although it’s not warm, it’s pleasant enough to get into the garden when time allows.

So, seeds have germinated, and seedlings babies are becoming toddlers. In other words it’s potting on time!

L:R sweet peas, shallots and pak choi
Left to right: sweet peas, shallots and pak choi

The sweet peas are doing brilliantly and have now had the top growth nipped out. This should encourage side shoots and nice bushy plants. The shallots are plodding on nicely and can be planted out soon. I noticed that the pak choi looked a little pale. Thinking that this may be because they are running out of nutrients so I decided to pot them on into their own individual cells or pots.

Pak choi (left) and lettuce (right)
Pak choi (left) and lettuce (right)

I potted some of the pak choi into individual pots. I unrolled the tubes and carefully separated the roots first, throwing the used tubes into the compost, no waste!

I filled pots and a tray with multi purpose compost and a little perlite to keep them free draining, made a hole in the middle of each pot/cell, and gently placed the roots in. Pak choi are a member of the brassica family (cabbage, broccoli etc) and like to be well firmed in. You can plant them a little deeper, and compact the soil around them with your fingertips. Add a little more soil to the top if they seem a bit low, and gently firm again.

What about other seedlings?

Pretty much all seedlings can be transplanted in the same way, and keeping the pak choi company are tiny little lettuces.

Annoyingly, I often get “leggy” tomato seedlings due to not having any south facing windows, so they grow upwards quickly in search of light.

Potting tomatoes on is just as easy however. Prick out the seedlings from the container they are in. You can use a teaspoon or plant label to gently tease them out. Plant them deeper than they were originally, up to the first set of leaves, and roots will grow out of the stem that is under compost. Remember, always handle seedlings by their leaves and not the stems. It feels like I am picking them up by their ears! The leaves can handle being touched. The stems, at this stage, cannot.

Also, the first of the sunflowers have been potted on, yippee!!

Sunflower seedlings potted on
Sunflower seedlings potted on

What else is happening?

Bedding plants
Bedding plants been sown

I have also sown some bedding plant seeds in this 72 cell tray. 12 each of lobelia mixed, lobelia lilac and lobelia monsoon (dark purple/blue), ageratum and petunias. Good old favourites! This is the first time I have grown any of these from seed, so will keep you posted on their progress.

All the fruit bushes now have green shoots, and the rhubarb is doing brilliantly since I repotted it and fed it with some organic chicken manure pellets.

Mad March is marvellous!

What is giving you joy this month?

Author: littlevioletsgarden

Gardener, crafter, blogger

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