Plant Update 2

It’s been a strange time for this seasons seedlings with slow growth not helped by cold days and nights, with the occasional frosty night since the initial seeds were sown around 25 February 2021.

This is what is currently available for this seasons crops.

Sprouts and Cauliflowers

These plants appear to be growing OK, but are the only ones remaining from a large batch of seeds which were sown. The plants are very difficult to tell apart, very similar leaves, but I can just about separate them. These are very much an experiment to see whether they will survive in our garden environment and we have 4 Sprout and 6 Cauliflower.

Seed started off inside the house, and a second batch sown about a month later and left in the greenhouse. The ones sown in the greenhouse had a better survival rate and developed a better root system than those from the house. Still had to watch out for those pesky frosty nights though when they were brought into the house. Now they seem to be surviving in the greenhouse ( but have to watch out they don’t overheat!! The temperature seems to be reaching the mid to late 20 degrees with the strength of the sun, although the outside temperature struggles to break the mid teens.

Cherry Red Tomatoes

These were all nurtured from seeds sown and kept indoors. Very quick to germinate (within 48 hours) and like to bolt becoming tall an straggly. These 4 plants are survivors from the 1st batch planted in February. There are another couple of plants which are slightly behind these.

Major issue was how quickly they would go “leggy“. This may be due to the lack of available light and you could see the plants turning towards the light, from outside, 2 or three times a day. The plants were placed on the window cill. (These were recovered by replanting with the plant deeper into the pot – advice offered by numerous people and I wasn’t sure it would work but it was successful).

Too much sun did not go down well either and during a number of experiments, where the plants were placed outside to “harden them off” the leaves lost their colour completely turning white. This may have been caused because they were in the sun for a short period of time but also may have been caused because the outside temperature was too cold and they suffered from a cold shock to the system.

There are 4 plants currently in the greenhouse and they seem (I hope) to be OK at the moment. Greenhouse windows and doors are now left open until late afternoon. A couple of backup plants are being kept in reserve.

Alicante Tomato and Piri-piri Chilli (top)

The most successful Alicante Tomato plants (shown at the bottom of this picture) were grown from the start in the Greenhouse and have developed a good and strong root system. Have been taken indoors on a couple of occasions when a frosty night was threatened, but otherwise have been left on their own. Seem to be a lot slower growing though.

The piri-piri (shown at the top of this picture) appear to be very delicate and couldn’t make up their minds whether they wanted to be inside or out. Started off in trays in the house in a warm dark place. Took up to 3 weeks to germinate and took them out of the dark as soon as any had broken out of the surface careful nurturing (like the light, but not direct sun, avoid cold shock otherwise they have the same problem as the cherry tomatoes (white leaf and dying). Approximately 5 plants remaining with 3 in the greenhouse and 2 in the house. Have to watch they don’t overheat or get chilled and growing a lot more strongly now.

Carrots

The carrots have been pretty much left to themselves and sown intermixed with chives to see what happens. Have to be watched a bit more closely as the greenhouse is hotter during the day than they need, will soon be moved outside. Second batch planted a few weeks later and scheduled to mature after the first batch is finished. These are really an experiment to see if they are going to survive in our garden. (Should be thinned but leaving them this year).

Strawberries

Covered and left over winter in the greenhouse – thriving, although weather is still a little on the cold side.

Bobette

Bobette was spotted growing among the roots of Bob the Bonsai. It’s root system was carefully separated from its parent, grown on in water to help its root system develop and transplanted into a shallow bowl with compost. Leaves appear to be the same as the parent Chinese Elm (Bob).