About Me

Hi I'm JAMES 60 and married with three daughters all left home now, daughters that is not the wife.I enjoy Gardening /Football and working on my Farm.The picture above in the header slot is where i live and work.

Saturday, 27 September 2008

Is it the end of September already

It seems hard to believe that we are nearly at the end of September with just the Leeks and Parsnips and Brussel Sprouts left in the ground to be collected over winter, with the weather we are having now been about the best dry spell we have had since late June it has been easier to get on the plot without churning the ground up into a sticky muddy mess so I have spent the day covering next years Onion plot which is quite a heavy clay type soil with a bit of FYM and a good deep covering of compost at a rate of a barrow load and a half per square yard on top, the worms can now get to work over the winter and i will dig it all in around February/ March time. I am fortunate that i can make as much compost as i could possibly need on the farm by using all the grass silage waste and any straw that has got a bit damp over winter and so is not fit to use for our livestock plus i added any sheep wool that was unsaleable . Last April I heaped it all up in one of our empty silos and turned and mixed it once a week (Sunday morning job) with our tractor loading shovel the heat that is generated is hard to imagine when you start the process but after about four months of regular turning it starts to cool and break down into compost it still a bit lumpy but that will soon breakdown over winter. I will also give all the flower beds a good covering through the winter to keep them as weed free as possible for a clean start next spring.

Friday, 26 September 2008

Channel 4 Programme

Did anyone else see how to grow giant vegetables on TV tonight very entertaining and just goes to show the lengths some go to to be the best, I don't think i could get my other half out of bed at 4 o'clock in the morning to help deal with a infestation of red spider mite on me Parsnips, still he did get them to grow to well over 12 foot in length. Good luck to them all I say

Sunday, 21 September 2008

After all the wet weather

After all the wet weather we have had for the last couple of months we finally made a start on our second crop of silage today Sunday, normally we would have finished this by the end of the second week of August but it has been absolutely impossible to get on this year, finally we get a dry spell and just as we are ready to collect it up, the Baler suffers a major breakdown . We have finally got rolling now 8.30 pm so it going to be a long night let's just hope now't else happens or i will have pulled the rest of my hair out with frustration. Sorry for the rant lets just call it therapy. Oh well Back to work now .

Wired for Spring

Yesterday I finally got round to getting my greenhouse wired up with electric so this spring I should be able to get things of to an earlier start with the Onions and Leeks normally i have waited till late April and planted out bought in ready started plants which is OK but often they have been growing in their seed trays for quite a while and are getting a bit crowded and elongated by the time I can get them into the ground and it does take quite a time for them to get settled in and growing well. The hope is this year i can have them in individual growing cells by late March and plant out a month or so later when conditions are right and keep them going forward without any checks plus i now have made some wire supports to help them to keep upright once they are planted out so i may just have some presentable specimens next show season. All i need to do now is drop some hints that a propagator and heat mat etc would be a nice suprise come Christmas and i'm sorted.

Sunday, 14 September 2008

Runner Bean Seeds

This year i thought i would try saving some of my own Runner Bean seeds for planting next year, this is the pod that i have selected, when i drew my first pick to show in mid August this one stood out it was from high up on the plant and younger than the ones i took to show that I won first prize with it was then best part of an inch longer and was as smooth and straight then as any i have ever grown ,allthough it has curved a bit now that the seed beans have started to grow and develop, so as long as the mother plant stays healthy and free from virus etc i will give it a try. I have still got 4 seeds over from the ones i bought this spring so i will be able to compare next season as to weather it was a wise decision.

Thursday, 11 September 2008

Show Results

Last night i went along to the Westmorland Horticulture Society show for the results of my latest efforts at showing vegetables, things didn't turn out so bad with a first in the Open long Carrot class third in Open two varieties of Potatoes and a first in Novice exhibitor Potatoes. I was pleased to get a first with my carrots but to be honest they were not brilliant specimens but as the class had no other outstanding entries they did deserve to win, in the open colored potatoes class came unplaced probably last they were a bit on the large size and seemed to have deteriorated more than others since staging on Tuesday morning (it was a two day show) not sure why. The Novice class was just a for any one who had never won a prize with Potatoes at any other show, I must be the oldest novice around. The picture is of some of my entries unfortunately some went astray before i could collect and photograph them.

Sunday, 7 September 2008

Dodging Showers

It has been a bit wet to put it mildly this weekend but things must go on. The main priority this weekend has been to get most of our farm stock vaccinated against Bluetongue we have been waiting since May for the vaccine to come available in our area so now it has finally arrived it has gone to the top of the list of jobs to get done and a right good soaking we have got doing it.

The ground has been to wet in the veg patch to do much so i set to and made some supports out of some stiff wire for next years Onions. I have always just let them get on with it but it was obvious when i tried them at a local show that the lacked a good shape to win even though they were a uniform size, it has set me on thinking of how to set things up for next years show season and i am going to have to give more thought to when and how often i need to plant crops so as to cover the local show season next year the first one is on the last Saturday in July with a show every weekend untill the third weekend of September and quite a few mid week shows as well all within a 15/20 mile radius, i won't have enough time to be able to enter all the shows but i think i will have a go at a good few and the first one in July is my nearest and the last one probably the most competitive so like i say a bit of thought is needed to cover them all.

Saturday, 6 September 2008

Broad Beans

I have just finished removing all the broad bean plants they had started to suffer quite a lot with chocolate spot and rust this last couple of weeks so i removed the last of the pods and cut down and binned the stalks. I would guess that the damp humid weather lately was the last straw for them but they had grown well and were runninig out of steam.