Whoops missed a Six on Saturday

It was going to happen eventually but last weekend I missed a #sixonsaturday #six-on-saturday update. I did manage to post about my RHS experience but the sos went by the way. Not that I have been entirely idle though as you shall see.

1. Fig tree – There are a number of gardening celebs I can blame for leading me off the straight and narrow. Sarah Ravens website I have to ration strictly otherwise I might just as well sign my bank account over to her. So enticing, with beautiful pictures of flowers in beds, borders, pots and other containers. However, it is not Sarah I am blaming for this documented small expenditure this time though but James Wong.

A couple of weekends ago he wrote about growing a fig tree in the garden. I had always thought that they were difficult to get fruit from due to the way they are fertilised by a tiny wasp which I don’t think is native to UK and their prediliction for a warm climate (and it might yet take a couple of years before I am proved wrong or right) but I decided to buy one. Not for me though but for G. who had been talking about them co-incidentally the day before I read the article.

So I jumped in and bought one from Ken Muir who I think sell fantastic fruit plants, trees etc. Last weekend we duly potted it up and it is now sitting in a protected spot against the wall of the shed which is the one bit of the garden that gets the sun from mid morning until evening during the spring, summer and autumn. All crossed for a future fig or two. Will post a photo when it is more than 2 sprouting twigs.

2. Strawberry beds

I have strawberries growing in a few places both on the allotment and in my garden. They are in the ground, in mangers (wooden trugs on legs that G. built) and in a tiered bed G. also made for me. Last weekend I spent a solid few hours weeding and feeding the strawberries. They are one of my favourite things to grow although eating too many of them causes me to come out in red blotches, the only food I am actually allergic to, but it does take a lot of strawbs to cause a reaction (thankfully).

The reason I am posting about them is because this year I am trying Strultch around them (mineralised composted straw which is supposed to both feed the plant and protect from slugs and snails). It is a little pricey but I figure if it works to protect my strawbs it will have been worth it.

Here are the strawberry tiers when they were built last year,

I haven’t taken a new photo but will in the next couple of weeks as the strawberries are growing strongly and there is a lot of flower on them too and they should be looking good soon.

Here’s of the strawberry mangers (photo also from last year),

3. Morrocan Black mint

Alys Fowler posted a photo up on instagram this week of her black mint plant. It looks a very pretty plant. I am growing this also, however, it seems to be growing at a snails pace, at the rate it is going I should bave my first cup of mint tea about November time. Alys reckons it is the best flavour for mint tea so if you are interested it is available from Real Seeds.

4. Today I took receipt of another order of lemon verbena rooted cuttings – for some reason I do not seem to be able to successfully over-winter this plant. Outside or inside I am unsuccessful, if anyone has any suggestions please let me know. Although this year I will be attempting to strike a lot of cuttings as this is a plant I love the smell of.

5. I also took delivery today of two peonies I bought at the RHS Cardiff Show. They are lovely specimens from Primrose Hall, here they are on display at the show.

6. She-shed … Today and tomorrow we empty and demolish the sheds on my allotment plot and in its place G. is building for me a super-duper new one (my “she-shed”) and I am extremely excited. He has designed it as well as building it and as well as storing all those masses of pots and allotment essential detritus there will be a potting bench and room to put seeds to germinate with more light than my house window sills. Am hoping we can find and install a solar panel that might just take the edge off the cold enough in the winter to be able to start even some slightly more tender plants early.

Today we spent the afternoon taking away the old sheds (which were falling apart), not finished yet but more than 50% done, here are the before photos so I can feature the after when its done.

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19 thoughts on “Whoops missed a Six on Saturday

  1. Oh, how naughty! You missed it!
    Actually, I neglected to post the link for mine until someone reminded me.
    ‘Festiva Maxima’ peony looks RAD. I know there are better whites, but it is still my favorite. It looks like a white peony should, even with the red specks. It is the standard for white peony!

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  2. I was lucky enough to inherit two ‘Festiva Maxima’ peonies and they are so floriferous! Get a bucket-load of blooms from each of them. What is the pink one? I LOVE the concept of a she-shed!! Has your fig sprouted leaves yet? I think ours got hit by the beast, and is not showing any signs of life at the tips (but is green beneath the bark lower down, so fingers crossed).

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    • The other peony is a ‘Dr Alexander Fleming”, this is my first venture into peonies but my son has 2 beautiful ones he inherited at his house so I am looking forward to mine. One is a birthday present for my mum but I think I will keep the Festiva Maxima as I don’t have a lot of white in the garden (am a blue, purple and pink girl). I shall keep my fingers crossed for your fig.

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  3. Exciting plans. Would you consider training your fig along the wall of the shed (old or new)? If I was starting a new one, I think that’s what I’d do for concentrated fruit and avoidance of sprawl. Looks good too. See the one at Great Dixter in the Sunken Garden for inspiration!

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    • Tim, thank you, I will certainly take a look at the Great Dixter example, atm it is only about 1 foot tall with 2 y shaped branches so it is certainly a candidate for training. Cheers

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  4. Oh I so want a fig too and get very lost in the Sarah raven site; it’s all so lovely! I thought I had to put a fig in a Greenhouse so I shall watch your site with interest. Sheds….at one point they ruled my hubbies life and we spend hours looking for the right one! We now have a lovely new shed so onwards with the next plans. Lovely 6. Enjoy your Sunday.

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    • Hello, teabreakgardener, that’s me at the moment, on a tea break. It’s my first with peonies but the display at Cardiff by Primrose Hall was fabulous, if they come anyway near as good then it will be fantastic.

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  5. I have a new shed this year & it’s the best, having a space that’s totally your own. Can’t wait to see the ‘after’ photos. I’ve had a fig in a pot for years & it produces a nice crop of fruit for me. I like Tim’s idea of training it, altho mine’s too old for that, now. May have to give Ken Muir a look & get another fig just to try it out. Good luck w/yours.

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    • Lora, am so looking forward to my new shed. G. heard the term She-shed on the Radio yesterday, and it has been decided that we need to call these a She’d (pronounced sheed) as men have their caves so women will have their She’ds. Am feeling more confident hearing your mention of fig fruit. Havena good one.

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