DD Gardening: Getting started despite Storm Doris!
This week storm Doris has battered our gardens, damaging flowers and toppling a few trees along its way. Many a daffodil was blown sideways and the gardens received a good shaking in the process, added into the wind there has been a real drop in temperatures – in the garden from the chilling wind, and in the polytunnel from the poor light levels with all the cloud about. A few weeks ago temperatures of 20C were common in the tunnel, but this week its been more in the 6C camp.However all is not lost! It’s still early in the season for sowing seeds and really getting going, but we can be sowing the odd bit of stuff – as long as you have either (a) large windowsills to sit everything on or (b) a glasshouse or polytunnel. Advertisement I stress the access to sunlight at this stage as getting things germinated is easy, but without the the right levels of light all you’d do is grow leggy seedlings which are of no use to man nor beast.This week during the ‘Get ready for Spring’ event in the Caw Nelson Community growing Space in Derry we started of sowing some Spinach, Peas, Beans and chard.These are all seeds which germinate at low temperatures, so are ideal for an unheated polytunnel. Seeds such as Peas and Broad Beans are ideal for sowing early as they only need temperatures of around 6C to germinate (most seeds are in the 15C bracket), and if you sow a batch now and then again in a few months you get a nice successional crop in the garden.However if you have a heated propagator, such as the fantastic Vitopod machine, then you can get seeds of Chillies and Peppers on the go now. These seeds need 20C to germinate, and the plants really benefit from the long growing season an early start affords them. Kept in a heated propagator for a few months these will get well established and if potted on will be great plants come May when they’ll really start to crack on. Advertisement Sowing seeds is easy, remember to start off with clean pots, good quality seed and proper Seed compost. Seed compost is generally a finer grade of compost and gives a better seed to compost contact and (surprisingly) is less fertile than regular compost. This low fertility makes for the creation of a better seedling and long term a better plant.Also this week we started to ‘chitt’ some of our seed potatoes, this is simply starting off your seed potatoes on a bright windowsill to get them motoring on, hopefully small green stumpy shoots will form and the potatoes will then be in great shape for planting in 4 weeks time!DD Gardening: Getting started despite Storm Doris! was last modified: February 26th, 2017 by Gareth AustinShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:GardeningGareth Austinstorm doris