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July 31, 2020, 17:38:04 by Galette | Views: 342 | Comments: 7

Hi folks.  I have such a heavy crop of outdoor tomatoes that the trusses are beginning to break off the plant.  The fruit is still mainly green at the moment so they have to survive on the plant for some time yet.  Any hints on how to support them?  I have tried tying them to a leaf higher up the stem with garden twine but I think they are going to 'fold' and then snap.
Digeroo
July 29, 2020, 16:12:15 by Digeroo
Views: 328 | Comments: 1

I like seed saving and tend to end up with the windowsills and radiators covering in piles of beans.
But Aldi sell net bags for 25p.  They are designed for weighing veg so as not to use one off plastic bags.
I have bought quite a few, and hope to dry the pods off in them.  I can have a neat little rows of bags hanging along the radiators.  Then if the beans fall out they are in the bag and not all over the carpet.  Then I can hang them up hopefully out of the way of mice. 
I left quite a few beans in my car and a mouse got in and ate them.  There must have been a hole because when I cleared the car and sold it, I never saw any mice.  So I lost some of my favourite HSL stocks.
One year I had boxes but the pods at the bottom rotted off, and another my husband got helpful and put them all into one box and muddled them all up.  Since then I have only grown one of each seed type so I can tell them apart.  So the bags should help with labelling as well.

Digeroo
July 29, 2020, 14:06:57 by Digeroo
Views: 350 | Comments: 5

Not sure they are a disease, but they are certainly a pest.
The next plot to mine has been empty for some years.   So for several years one of the other plot holders has borrowed my strimmer and strimmed it annually before the thistles seeded.  However, at the beginning of last year he had returned to Eastern Europe and I was ill so the thistles flowered and then....
So my plot was filling up with thistles.
I almost gave up, but with the onset of the virus I thought growing veg would be a good idea.   
Lots of new people have taken plots but they all turned down the thistle plot.
So in the end I took it on, and my husband spend the first month of the lockdown digging it over. 
Since then I have pulled up more than 1000 thistles.  But they have underground rhisomes so as soon as you pull them up they pop up with more.  Pull up one, and two appear and then there is a row of them.
I planted the plot with courgettes and pumpkins which I know discourage weeds.  But it seems that creeping thistle are exempt.  (as are nettles, comfrey, fat hen) Though the couch has not put in as much of an appearance as I had feared.   
So the question is how do you get rid of creeping thistles?  They are the ones with small pinkish flowers.
The farmers sprayed some of the thistles near the hedge with some weedkillers but this seems to have stayed in the soil and a few of my squashes and courgettes are not best pleased.  I managed to move several, and once the soil is washed off they are doing well and producing normal non pointed leaves.   
In general the plots is growing things superbly.  Several people have been annoyed they did not choose the plot.   In order to be quick, I dumped piles of manure and then planted four pumpkins, squashes or courgettes round each pile.  Hopefully they keep the moisture in the soil, so less water is needed.  With the recent rain the plants have now taken off big time, but so have the thistles. 
I also have dwarf beans and thistles, carrots and thistles, a flower border with assorted thistles, tomatoes, cucumbers and chillis with thistles, and baby corn with thistles.   I pull up 50 a day but that is not enough. 
And horseradish!!  That needs to go too but is in the middle of the raspberries.

Digeroo
July 29, 2020, 12:30:01 by Digeroo
Views: 416 | Comments: 5

I like a variety from T&M called Pencil Pod Black Wax and was unable to buy more, so was pleased when I found a few left in a very old packet. 
Quite a few germinated so I was pleased knowing also I could hopefully save some seed.  I ended up with 12 nice plants. 
But then things started to be odd.  They started producing  climbing tendrills.  The first one to appear I removed, but they produced more, and soon all the plants had them.   So I provided some sticks, but these were not long enough so I put in canes.  Then they produced more and more climbing tendrills.  Then it became obvious that every leaf node was producing another climbing tendrill, and the leaf node on the tendrills were producing more tendrills, so now each cane has 6,7,8 tendrills maybe more, wrapped around it and more coming and more sticking out of the plant.  The plants are now huge and finally have started to have a few flowers.
Has anyone experienced anything like this before?
I must have grown the rest of the packet some years ago, but can not remember anything exceptional except I liked the variety.
I grew them first about 10 years ago I remember them along one side of my plot and they did well, but the packet I found was not that old.   It was the SSW edge so I would have remembered any tendency to climb.   


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