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Post new topic   Reply to topic    Irish Gardeners Forum Home -> Vegetable growing, fruit and allotments in Ireland

Im a first timer wanting to grow veg in the garden


 
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Lucyloo
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Joined: 18 Jan 2009
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PostPosted: Sun Apr 05, 2009 3:35 pm    Post subject: Im a first timer wanting to grow veg in the garden Reply with quote

Is it too late to start sowing seeds in doors, I also want to plant potatoes and carrotts and a few other veg, I have a large dog here, so ideally in large pots rather than into the ground.

Any ideas?

I have loads of pots from last year , I planted hundreds of flowers and most of them grew, Very Happy so this year I want to grow veg.

I don't have a polytunnel or anything like that, I sowed some tomato seeds on Friday and they are in a pot on the kitchen window sil.

What would be the best options for me?

Thanks in advance:
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Liparis
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PostPosted: Sun Apr 05, 2009 5:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It's never too late, well, unless your waiting until July, to sow indoors. Having said that, I have just come in from lifting the last of my leeks from last year. Due a long illness I didn't get the seed sown until late June, The leeks weren't huge, but who really wants huge? But I had ample to see me through the winter. An example of not rushing into things, thay do catch up.
Anyway, back to you. You have to be aware of several things, sowing indoors is going to speed up germination, so what are we talking about sowing? Onion seed for early start and planting out, fine, lettuce? Well, you need a back up. Depending on temperatures you could have lettuce germinate in 3 or 4 days. What are you going to do with 100 lettuce babies? You can't put them straight outside. It would be like you having a very hot bath then going straight out into the garden naked! As soon as germination occurs, temperatures need to be dropped by 5c - 10c to prevent too much rapid growth which makes them leggy and weak, it's also ideal for stem-rot getting into your plants. You need an intermediate protection, like a frost free greenhouse or cold-frame. The plants then need to be acclimatised from there to the garden. See a previous post I made about moving seedlings from sunroom to garden. It's there somewhere, but I'm rubbish with computers when it comes to searching.
My suggestion would be, if you can, sow seeds of what you want to grow and experiment with acclimatising - known as hardening-off - but get to a garden centre late April and buy a few plants that are ready for planting out, that way if your exprimenting goes wrong, you have a back up. The later in the year you sow, the easier it is to harden-off. Anything that does fail, don't give up, keep notes and sow again, you'll find it getting easier. Always keep notes, you'd be surprised how a tiny detail gets forgetten no matter how good your memory, You will want those notes next year. Sods law says it's always the important detail.
It always makes me restless each time I read the hurry people are in to get stuff in the garden. Unfortunately, this is probably caused by the very mild winters we have had for several years. Things have survived when they shouldn't be out and away from their mammies. This past winter, although still very mild has thrown a lot more frosts at us. We could still get a frost as late as early May, plants aren't tough enough and they get checked. Bang goes all your hard work. I'm not saying things shouldn't go into the garden yet, I'm saying make sure you spend as much effort in hardening-off as you do with preparing your plot.
I don't know if there's a post on how to harden-off plants, I have thought of writing one on how I do it and the various stages. I suppose I better check and see first, I'm always worried I'm tying to teach granny to suck eggs.
Bill.

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breezyacre
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PostPosted: Sun Apr 05, 2009 5:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Was going to reply to you Lucyloo but Bill has sent you some very good advice there. Basically I wouldn't be putting any seedlings out in the garden for at least another month. Therefore you do not really need to plant lettuce seeds for a couple of weeks yet. If you plant about 10 in a 3'' or 5'' inch pot around the middle of April. They will germinate and grow quite quickly in a protected environment like a windowsill. Then in the first couple of weeks of May start putting them outside for the warm part of the day and return them to cool protection at night. Cool protection would be the porch of your house ( you say you don't have a cold frame or a polytunnel) As the temperatures improve in May and after 5 or six days of hardening off you can plant them in their final position. Make sure to protect from snails. Plant more lettuce seeds in two week cycles so you can have constant supply during the growing season. Hope this helps.
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Organicgrowingpains
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PostPosted: Mon Apr 06, 2009 10:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

You can grow anything in containers and they have the added benefit of being easier to protect from frost by putting fleece or a covering over them at night.
I planted salad leaves in window boxes last year and we had salad leaves from consecutive sowings for the whole summer.
This year I have put carrots in the ground but for the last 2 years we have grown them in barrels I hope this years ones are as good.



allotment_8.jpg
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First of the crop 2008
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Some of the crop 2009
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Sive
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 07, 2009 8:43 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Love the photos ( and the carrots )! Are the boots on the wrong feet ? Cute !
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Organicgrowingpains
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 07, 2009 8:56 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

They were! New boots he was not sure how they went on at the time but they are well worn now.
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Sive
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 07, 2009 9:38 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Bless him, he's gorgeous.
I'd love to try growing carrots at a height like that.....I've heard it defeats carrot fly, which apparently flies about 6" above ground level. It'll be interesting to see how your crop does this year, in the ground.
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James Kilkelly
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 07, 2009 11:40 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Great to see the pics Organicgrowingpains.
That young buck looks just like my brother at that age, wellies put on too quickly in a rush to get out in the muck.
A poster boy for allotment and vegetable growing. Very Happy

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Organicgrowingpains
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 07, 2009 6:02 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi,Grandson Kevin is on the allotment with me since the beginning and loves nothing better than digging and watering!.He spent a lot of time with me as a baby and I used to sit him on a blanket while I was working in the garden with the result one of his first words was actually dig!
This year because we have the carrots in the ground he asked to bring home one of the barrels to show his Mom & Dad how to grow carrots and he has his own bed on the plot also.
If you go through the photos on the blog he crops up regularly.

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Bobwilliams
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 07, 2009 6:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Organicgrowingpains wrote:

If you go through the photos on the blog he crops up regularly.


Laughing Laughing
Nice images Peggy.
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