SoS: Success, Failure and a Nice Surprise

Thankfully, the water butts are full to the brim as are all the plastic water bottles. It truly is April showers with brilliant sunshine one minute and heavy rain the next. I seriously would not recommend a holiday in Portugal in April if you want a tan as the weather is too unreliable and it is still cold at night.

The wild boar continue to dig beside our boundary wall… I just hope they don’t burrow underneath.

1. A Nice Surprise!

OH saw this in Lidls and decided to surprise me! At 140 x 190 x 90cm it is perfect and I could be seen doing a *happy dance* as he pieced it together.

Mini Plastic Greenhouse
Mini Plastic Greenhouse

2. Nasturtiums

The Nasturtiums (Tropaeolum majus and minus) I planted from seed on the 27th February are now gracing the terracotta pot on the corner of our back patio. Hopefully, the location won’t prove to windy and they survive! I wish I’d have thought of this sooner as the pot is too heavy to move.

Nasturtium Tropaeolum in pot

This plant was spare so I decided to let him grow in the gravel.

Nasturtium Tropaeolum
Nasturtium Tropaeolum

3. Sickly Garlic

The garlic we planted at the beginning of February has turned a sickly yellow and the stems are rotting at ground level. I think the problem lies with overwatering. We are not going to count this as a ‘fail’ as it was probably planted too late in the season. Next year we will plant them beginning of November so they have the cold winter nights as opposed to warm wet weather.

My first attempt at growing garlic in a container was not a success
sickly garlic with yellow leaves

4. Cucumbers grow well in pots

So far we’ve harvested three cucumbers. There are plenty more … probably we will pickle some and chop others into chunks and then freeze. Frozen cucumber is perfect in gin. Has anyone else tried it?

Cucumbers grow well in pots
cucumbers grow well in pots

5. Tomatoes

The Cacho, Rosa and Cherry tomatoes purchased as seed plugs in mid-March have now been transplanted to their final growing space.

This year we invested in some self-watering plant pots from Lidl’s. Fingers crossed we won’t need to water every day.

Cherry Tomatoes in Pots

Another experiment is to grow some tomatoes in grow bags. This option proved successful in the UK but we’ve never tried it here. We will see.

Cacho and Rosa tomatoes
tomatoes in growmore bag

6. A Curious Onlooker

I was rather anxious when I heard rustling in the hedge that it was the snake I had encountered last year. thankfully, . It was only a lizard. We have two who always come and observe me as I work in the garden.


That’s my six for this week.

That’s my six for this Saturday. Why not pop over to Mr P’s blog to catch up with more Six on Saturday gardeners.


20 thoughts on “SoS: Success, Failure and a Nice Surprise

Add yours

  1. Nasturtiums!! They are still my favorite ‘annual’ for the home garden. They grow as a cool season annual AND as a warm season annual. By the time those from summer start to get old, the next batch is growing from seed underneath to bloom through winter. By the time they finish, the next batch is coming up for spring and summer. Self sown types revert to simple orange and yellow, but those are my favorites for nasturtium anyway.
    Will those cherry tomatoes get broad enough to shade the exposed sides of their pots before the weather gets too warm?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. thanks, Tony. I am still experimenting with Nasturtiums so I’m pleased you have given me the heads-up re the growth cycle. I better get some more seeds in preparation of the next batch!

      As for cherry tomato… no they won’t. Is the shaded pots important?

      Liked by 1 person

      1. If they lean out enough to partly shade the pots through the middle of the day, or at the end of the day if they face west, that should be enough. those thin plastic pots get quite warm. They are thin enough to transfer heat from the outer surface to the soil within, so that roots can not use the soil that is right up against the pot. It can get hot enough to cook them. That is why the nursery cans, that are fine for plants that are wide enough shade them, are so bad for some types of home gardening. I happen to use them (because I am a nurseryman) but they are close enough together to shade each other, with bushy plants on the edge. The black vinyl absorbs heat.
        Anyway, you should not need more seed. Nasturtiums will make their own later in the year. I mean, those that are growing now will bloom through the year and make seed in autumn. If you collect some of the seed and plug it back in where the mature plats are, it will start to grow and bloom as the old plants start to deteriorate. I recommend cutting the old plants at the base rather than pulling them, just because cutting them is less disruptive to the new plants. The only problem is that if you like particular varieties, they all revert back to the basic yellow and orange, with only a rare errant red. I had no problem with that because I only wanted yellow and orange. However, if you want a particular variety, you would need to replace the seed. The only variety that I know that is true to type (which means that it will not revert is ‘Empress of India’. I am not even certain about that because I have never grown them.


  2. I tried 5 years ago to grow toms in grow bags and it succeeded. 2 plants per a 40L bag and a string hanging from the roof of the greenhouse to guide them.
    Good idea that frozen cucumbers in gin : Never tried.
    Last thing, ok for you to plant your garlic in November. They need cold nights and no watering

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Sorry to read about the garlic. Lidls seems a good place to pick up the odd garden bargain. My parents sware by Aldi. Noticed a robin has been following me around the garden lately. No lizards though!

    Liked by 1 person

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