Diary of a Novice Gardener- Part 4

10.12.2018
Today I popped outside to do some watering after work and to my surprise there are little baby cucumbers growing on my plant. I’ve struggled so much with this cucumber plant. My best friend, who is an excellent gardener suggested I cut off the dead leaves so that the plant could spend its energy on the healthy parts. I continue to put grass clippings on the pot every couple of weeks when my lawns are mowed to add nitrogen to the soil.

26.12.2018
With the lead up to Christmas I got distracted from writing and so I haven’t kept up my diary. I can’t recall exact dates, but I’ll give you an idea for what I’ve been up to in the garden in the past 2 weeks.

My tomatoes are going crazy! There are so many little green (some turning yellow or orange now) tomatoes on my plant and it feels like every few days I’m tying another stem to the stake to keep it in some kind of order. I cannot wait to able to try some.

Everything seems to be plodding along. The cos lettuce is growing now. I water when it hasn’t rained, I spray slug spray every few days, I throw a handful of plant food on every few weeks.

The leeks and cabbage have never grown. I’m assuming the seeds had gotten wet or something before planting. I’m thinking about what else to pop in those tubs. I have 5 spare pots now that I’m thinking of what I can plant.

I haven’t done much more with the strawberries, although just moving the pots closer to the house line seems to have deterred the birds somewhat. I borrowed my mums drill but the bit I had with it didn’t drill through the plastic. My dad gave me my own drill for Christmas, so I’ll have a look at that in a few days and see if I can’t get some holes in the pots. The straw is making a difference though. I’ve eaten a few strawberries as they get red, they are tiny though and not very nice.

The cucumber plant is definitely getting some life back in the leaves. It appears the baby cucumbers that seemed to be sprouting have shrivelled up, so I guess they weren’t pollinated. Hoping for some more soon.

The mint had gone but has sprung a few plants again in the last few days. I’ll spray it again with vinegar tomorrow.

We had a stack of rain last week, like torrential downpour multiple days. I think the over watering effected one of my potatoes. I noticed a white mould like substance on the top of the soil. The plants didn’t seem effected. I did some research and it said that ground cinnamon in the soil can help. Once I worked out it was wasn’t a special cinnamon that ‘goes in the ground’ but that the very cinnamon I was baking my gingerbread cookies with was in fact ‘ground cinnamon’ I was on track. I removed the top layer of soil to physically eliminate the mould. Then I sprinkled with cinnamon. It seems to be ok, it hasn’t come back in the week since I did that. Fingers crossed that goes ok. It’s a little stressful that one day I’m worried about the heat and the next the rain. It is fun though that I come across a problem, research and then try to solve it. The potato plants are getting so big now though.

I received several plants for Christmas- a hydrangea (which to be honest scares me a little because they’re so delicate), a hybrid tea rose, a new strawberry plant in a hanging basket, and a dwarf Meyer lemon tree. It’s so lovely adding to my collection.

Tomorrow is 37 degrees Celsius so besides watering I won’t do too much, but I’m hoping to get outside on Friday to do a little maintenance and transfer a few of the plants to their larger pots.

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