Although times have been difficult the last few months we have kept busy dispatching orders of seeds and plants for people to ‘grow their own’, things are now quietening down and getting back to some sort of normality. I decided, as my greenhouse at home had to be moved, to construct a new vegetable garden with some raised beds and this will be the start of many (I hope) jottings about what I am growing.
Needless to say the new garden isn’t finished! Decided on paved paths in order to make it easier to get around it in later life! but unfortunately as the area became larger we ran out of stone and so did the supplier so still waiting on another crate! however the beds are finished and some are planted.
It was too late to sow seed for the winter brassica crop so I decided to buy some plug plants.We have used Delfland in the past for commercial quantities of plugs but they have a retail arm too sending out small quantities. Bought the ‘Brussel Sprout Collection’, the ‘Cauliflower collection’, some leeks and some ‘Kalelettes’. This is the ideal way to purchase as the quantities are small and the collections offer different varieties so that not everything becomes ready at the same time.Particularly important with cauliflowers for example as 10 cauliflowers ready together are a challenge and they don’t hold! the collection had 5 varieties, 2 of each so hopefully no glut.
‘Kalelettes’ I have grown before, a sort of cross between sprouts and kale, they are delicious steamed. They sometimes appear in the supermarket but hopefully by growing some I can have a constant supply through winter, they can get tall however so may need staking.
Have used enviromesh cover over all of the young plants to keep off the cabbage white and also the pigeons which seem to have appeared from nowhere in recent months and are now eyeing their winter food! I will shortly be getting some more permanent cages for the brassica beds and will post some pictures if they work.
Have sown some french beans as a late crop, these should be ready in late August/early September, have used a variety new to us ‘Elba’, so if they do well will be adding those to the catalogue later in the year.
Have filled the rest of the beds with some left over squash plants and a couple of sweet potatoes as a trial, bit late on the squash but you never know.
Determined also to grow a steady supply of salads. Have done this in the greenhouse using small troughs. As one lot grows I am starting another and hope to continue through winter. So far have sown ‘a taste of America’ and ‘Out of this World’ and will follow with ‘Hardy cold Snap’. The oriental mixes are good to sow now too.
Will be starting 2019 with a resolution to write this blog regularly with ideas, tips, new items you can grow.
We have our Early Bird offer on at the moment for our seeds, 25% discount until twelfth night. Just enter seedy18 into the discount/coupon box after choosing your seeds and save 25%.
Grow something different. Mulberries, these have the reputation for taking years to fruit. Grafted, named varieties will fruit the first year so you won’t have to wait. Look out for Illinois Everbearing, Collier, Pink Moldovan, these will produce a small crop of small fruit the first year and largest fruits and crops as the plants establish. If you haven’t got room for one of these as they grow to 3 metres then try the dwarf variety Morus nana ‘Issaii’ which will only make 2 metres and can grow in a pot.
Look out for next blog featuring Chestnuts and Walnuts!
Well November has left us with some of the coldest weather for a good few years. We experienced -6 on one night. i am reminded of the old saying however ‘November ice to bear a duck, rest of winter mud and muck’, lets see if it has any truth.
Hope you had your tender plants wrapped up? but at least it may have killed off a few of the bugs we seem to have accumulated after the last couple of very mild winters.
We have a new member of staff at the nursery, we have been joined by Rodent Control Manager – Billy. Billy is a black and white boy cat who seems to have decided the nursery is home with three square meals a day in return for presenting a few dead mice occasionally. He now has his own twitter account so you can follow him @Billythe mouser.
We are busy dispatching your fruit tree orders at the moment although this cold spell has put a stop to this for a few days, hope to resume next week.
Autumn Newsletter – September 2016
Welcome all existing and new subscribers to our newsletters, we normally publish monthly but there has been a bit of a gap this time. apologies for that but in this edition you will find details of up coming shows, things to plant and a few ideas for the garden in winter.
Shows first, many of you will have seen us at the Wisley flower Show in early September, regrettably we shall not be there this year! However we will be at Malvern autumn 24/25th September, probably near the cookery stage, the autumn harvest show 4/5th October and the autumn RHS Show, both at Westminster RHS halls.
We know many of you purchase your seeds, garlic and autumn onion sets at Wisley and so we would like to offer all our customers a special discount if you order on line over the period of the show.
20% off all orders made on line by Sunday 11th September! Use the code AUT2016 in the discount/coupon box at the checkout.
(applies to all orders placed on line up to and including 11/10/2016, does not include postage and packing costs. Please note some items may not be dispatched until November – bare root fruit).
What should we be planting for autumn/winter cropping and for next year?
Garlic – best planted October, needs the cold weather to produce good bulbs
Autumn onion sets – often giving better results than spring planted when conditions in spring are wet. Plant October harvest June.
Broad Beans – for an early crop next year, choose Aquadulce, The Sutton or robin Hood. Don’t plant too early, end October is fine.
Spring Onions – winter hardy variety such as ‘White Lisbon’.
Perpetual spinach ‘Erbette’ – sowings now will yield fresh young leaves over winter.
Winter salads – cold hardy lettuces such as Winter Density and Valdor, corn Salad or Lamb’s Lettuce, Mibuna, Mizuna, Mustards, Rocket, Land Cress, all will yield over winter in a cold greenhouse or with a little protection outside.
Try our cold hardy winter salad mix for growing in boxes or pots in a sheltered position cut & come again all winter long.
Remember 20% off all these when you order at www.pennardplants.com by September 11th and use code AUT2016.
It is also time to think of new plantings of fruit trees and bushes for autumn/winter, we have Fruit Days coming up in October – 7th/8th where you can taste Apples & Pears if you can get to the nursery or order on line.
Please don’t hesitate to e mail your queries or comments to email@example.com we do our best to answer quickly.
We hope you have a good gardening summer and are reaping the harvest at the moment, hope to see some of you at the late shows.
Chris & Mike
After weeks we have a new web site, not perfect yet, still lots of work to do this end but designers have done a good job I think. Just one thing, Google has to learn the site is not a secure site anymore as we no longer take payment details, this is all done by SagePay so if you have us on your favourites please change the URL to commence http:// NOT https:// Hopefully there will be more blogging going on this end now.