After a grey but dry start to the morning the sun has broken through the cloud cover. If it hangs around long enough, I might be tempted out to the front garden to remove some dead foliage.
I’ve been watching sparrows collecting dried Mexican feather grass, one had so many rammed into its beak it could hardly take off. Despite plenty of interest, I don’t think we have any blue tits nesting in the bird box, which is a shame. This time last year, we were building the Tiny Greenhouse and they were in and out of the nest box all day long.
Never mind, there is always plenty of wildlife to see in other Six on Saturday posts, hosted by The Propagator. I’ll be popping in from time to time to have a look between study activities.
This pot of mizuna mix is now supplementing our salads. It’s a shame it couldn’t do the same over the winter months as intended! I have a tray of the same leaves in the Potting Shed, and some new lettuce seedlings are making an effort.
Mindful of the time it takes for seeds to germinate and develop into plants large enough to plant into the bags of compost waiting in the wings of the Tiny Greenhouse, I made a start on 22 August.
A point to note is the inclusion of coloured clothespegs to hold the plant labels. This guarantees means that even if the labels fade in the sun or through watering – and provided the clothespeg stays in the pot – I will know that the blue signify Parsley, the purple are American Land Cress, the white are Mizuna, and the pink are coriander.
I ordered lots of herb and salad seeds.
Amaranthus – The leaves turn intense red as they develop – giving added colour in salads. It is more vigorous than the green type. Use the leaves individually or pick as sprigs
Cress – plain
Misticanza misculglio – Mixed Italian salad of chicories including red radicchio. This mixture contains no lettuce and is ideal as a perennial mixture for cut and come again. Red radicchio can be left over winter to head up or blanched for tender pink leaves. Green varieties can be left to grow on.
Mixed oriental leaves – This mixture contains : Mibuna (17%), Mustard Red Giant (16%) , Pak choi shanghai (17%), Komatsuma Tender green (17%), Mizuna (17%) , Chinese Cabbage Wonk Bok (16%)
Mustard Red Frills – Mustard Red Frills produces superb deep red and green shoots with a mild fiery mustard flavour that is easy to grow and fast growing.
Pea Serge (for shoots) – Tender cripsy shoots and tendrils of young pea plants make a wonderful edible garnish and a perfect snack. Ideal replacement for Samish (a variety of spinach).
Radish Red Rioja – Radish Red Rioja produces large purple red cotyledons, (first leaves) which will always show a small proportion of green seedlings. This variety is very popular for its colour and makes for a fantastic and colourful addition to salad.
Sorrel – red veined – Sorrel is a perennial plant with a sharp lemon flavour, one of the last to die salad leaves to die down for winter and one of the first to appear in spring.
Spinach Red Kitten F1 – with its attractive red stem and oriental shaped leaf, this salad leaf is very sweet in flavour.
On 25 August, despite gales and torrential rain, I escaped to the potting shed for more seed sowing.
Chinese Kale x 3 pots
Chives x 2 pots
Radish French Breakfast x 1 pot
Radish Spanish Black Round x 1 pot
Spring Onion White Lisbon x 2 pots
A week later and both radish were growing well, with the Chinese Kale not far behind.
Time for the next round of seed sowing
In the Tiny Greenhouse, the Claytonia (Winter Purslane/Miner’s Lettuce) I sowed on 9 August, has its first true leaves and will soon be large enough to plant.
Time to plant up some bags.
I look forward to eating the results in a few weeks. Should there be any sign of slugs and snails, I have a supply of crushed eggshells at the ready.
This morning, I sowed another pot each of Radish French Breakfast and Black Spanish Round. Then four pots of Mustard Red Frills. It may be that this is something that should be direct sown into the bags to mingle with other leaves, or when I plant the seedlings into a bag, I also sow seeds in the gaps.
As you can see, the pot of spring onions and the two pots of chives sown on 25 August are still quite small. I expect the mustard will be ready to plant before them.