Friday, 24 April 2015

Seedling worries...

It's madness but here I am a grown woman on my hands and knees looking for a sign that I got it right and planting my potatoes in the pouring rain wasn't such a terrible mistake. And there it is...tiny but definitely there, those first little shoots! Is it wrong to dance a little? think the man walking his dog passed at the time thought so:)

 I've watched all 3 of my sons take those first steps, that grin of triumph as they stagger/fall towards you, the knowledge that from now on it is a steady race away from babyhood. Ok, so I would never phone family to announce the sign of those little green shoots as I would have for those first steps, I'm really not sure that they would completely understand my excitement though they all love me enough to humour me;) But it's a similar joy of something that you are innately proud of, I managed to plant something well enough for it to grow (I'm secretly applauding myself). Please don't burst my bubble by telling me that potatoes would grow through concrete if given half a chance...ignorance is soil isn't far off concrete anyway so I suspect the truth really:)

I've finally let the baby artichokes that I grew from seed last year leave the safety of their pots and have planted them out on the allotment, they look very tiny and vulnerable (even with the posh copper labels I made them). I can only hope that the slugs give them a chance, though slugs aren't known for their mercy, I will scatter the crushed egg shells and hope.  Only 4 of my seedlings survived the winter and I felt a sense of loss every time one of them keeled over, I daren't say how many I started out with! 

My cheap plastic green house is full of little seedlings waiting for their chance out in the big bad world of the allotment. They all look so healthy and complete at the moment...not an aphid, caterpillar or hole to spoil them. The mother in me makes me nervous to let them leave 'home'. Two of my sons have left home now, I have sobbed in their empty bedrooms...they must never know, embarrassing mother. It is ridiculous to compare the two (I will not cry for seedlings) but there is a similar feeling of fear for them and excitement at what they will become...have I given them enough of a start for them to grow and thrive? In my sons cases, so far so good thankfully, as for my new venture into growing plants from seed, who knows?

I've seen a book that has just been published that I would really like to read called The Triumph of Seeds by Thor Hanson. I want to learn about seeds, not so much how to grow them as just about them and this looks like a good place to start. Seeds fascinate me, how something so unassuming, in some cases no more than dust (the horror of sowing thyme!) can grow into something that can ultimately feed you is amazing. Perhaps learning about them right from their very beginnings will help me to understand how better to get them to their end. Hopefully, I can learn more from this book about seeds and find it more useful/enjoyable than any of the books I read on child development and parenting as my boys grew up. Most of them ended up in a frustrated pile in the corner...better clear them away to make room...I want to learn Latin too;)


  1. Like your enthusiasm! Do you find copper rings and eggshells work against slugs? My hostas were decimated last year, and I'm hoping the avoid the same this year...

  2. Hi Sam, Thanks, I do love this gardening thing...Slugs are a nightmare aren't they? I'm no expert but I'm finding that they don't seem to like the eggshells, my artichokes haven't been touched so far at least...The copper rings work fine until a leaf(or something) gives them a bridge over the barrier...they are like slimey ninjas, if there's a way, they will find it..I've been told that beer traps work really well too, the cheaper the beer the better apparently so might give that a try too:)...good luck with your hostas!


Comments are always welcome, nice kind ones at least! Any advice for a complete novice would also be gratefully received:) Thanks.