Gone fishin’

28 August 2008

Metaphorically, of course.

When I return, a full report on the summer that has gone (some say it never arrived).

In the meantime, a picture of Castle Hill, where the gardeners club had a pleasant evening.



Pot in a Pot

23 March 2008


Our village fete is running a ‘Potato in a Pot’ competition again this year.

Simple idea. For a pound, you get a seed potato – some unidentified type of first early – some compost and a pot. The idea is to grow the heaviest crop for the village fete in mid-July.

Last year, a 7 year old topped them all with 5lb 13¾oz. One of our allotmenteers took the wooden spoon with a paltry 7 7/8 ounces.

Pots were available at Thursday’s Gardeners’ Club meeting. My compost is sitting on top of the boiler to get nicely warmed before planting a nice two sprout chitted potato. Warmed soil apart, I have a few ideas on accelerating growth and increasing yield.

But, I think I’ll keep those to myself for the time being! Of course, I’ll share ideas offline.

Potatoes and (an)other thing(s)

12 February 2008

A parcel was awaiting my return from work. That’s the spuds delivered then.

Now all I need to do is find trays for chitting and a nice dry, airy and light place to leave them. In this cold, damp and dark house that will be a challenge.

I’m too tired to go into the whole chitting debate. Apparently “garden guru” and”TV personality” Monty Don says that chitting – more or less encouraging your seed potatoes to sprout before planting – does little for crop yield.

Who am I to argue with a “guru”? Well, it becomes a moot point as I’m at least 3-4 weeks off of planting the seed potatoes. They’ll chit nicely.

I’m just back from the gardeners’ club committee meeting. There is one and one only nomination so far for the new committee. That’d be me then.

Not much luck on finding brave souls to drive forward into our second year. We have until next Thursday to find volunteers.

Meanwhile, it seems as though we’ve been acting unconstitutionally for the last couple of months.

With a committee member resignation we are down to three officers and two committee members. Checking the consitution this evening, we are supposed to have at least three committee members. Also, the AGM is supposed to be held in March and not February.

Sack the committee!

Committee meeting – tomorrow

11 February 2008

Tomorrow sees an important meeting of the Buckland Brewer Gardeners’ Club.

Our first Annual General Meeting is scheduled for 21 February. It might be our last.

The driving force behind the club, the chairman and secretary, have announced their intention to step down for one reason or another. In fact, they both said at the beginning of the club last February that they would give it a year: set up the club and leave it to others to drive forward.

At the inaugural meeting I put my hand up to volunteer. It was simply an attempt to get to know people in the village. It’s helped and I now feel – perhaps for the first time in my life – part of a community. As a committee member I’ve done my bit. I set up a crude website (which is very lonely, by the way); come up with a few ideas; snapped some photos at the “Fun Evening”.

So far it looks like there’s no new blood to take up the reins.

Would be a shame to see it fail.  But, I’m on a promise not to volunteer to do more than I already do.

Buckland Brewer Gardeners’ Club Quiz

5 February 2008


With thanks to the Buckland Brewer Gardeners’ Club, a gardening quiz posed at the October 2007 fun evening.

1. Name the famous garden tended by Geoff Hamilton?
2. Who founded Bressingham Gardens in Norfolk?
3. Cockneys call it ‘Sparrowgrass’, what is it’s correct name?
4. Who first grew pineapples in Britain and then used it in sculpture to ornament the pillars round his London home?
5. What does granulated clay in gardens have in common with groundsmen who put it on cricket squares?
6. What word is used to describe whitish, bluish or greyish bloom on flowers, fruit or stems?
7. What is the state of a plant that has total necrosis?
8. Nematode, a tiny worm, can harm some plants but is useful in ridding which garden pest?
9. What do conifers and sewing have in common?
10. True or false to scarify lawn or seeds?
11. What is the berry used to flavour gin and tonic?
12. By what name are Jersey Royals also known?
13. Gracie Fields claimed to have the biggest ‘what’ in the world?
14. A daffodil flower has a trumpet. Which other plant sounds brassy?
15. What flower comes in parrot form?
16. Propagation using parts of a plant?
17. What is the dense mass of a cauliflower called?
18. What is the name of a path caused by rain?
19. What sort of flowers did Tiny Tim tiptoe through?
20. What is the cutting the top of a tree, sometimes for commercial use, called?

Answers in a week or so.