A panoply of (sometimes) lovingly handmade crud.

Tag Archives: growing

So far, my garden seems to be doing pretty well. That’s in spite of some weird weather that included powerful wind and rain that killed some of my young plants. They currently seem to be enjoying the blazing sunshine.

I’ve planted out almost all of my seedlings. After being stressed that I didn’t pick the best tomatoes to plant out, they seem to be growing pretty well. I have several good seedlings left and I feel bad throwing them away, but I also don’t really have a use for them. Meant to email colleagues offering them but forgot.

My two physalis plants are looking pretty strong so far too.

I’ve had some strawberry drama. After discovering an aphid infestation soon after planting out, I sprayed the plants with some stuff I found in the cupboard, which actually killed one or two of them. I’ve also had some other seedlings die off. Maybe I waited too long to plant them out and the sun is too harsh on them? On the positive side, I was so happy to notice the first fruit growing!

My veg patch is coming on wonderfully too. I made a GIF showing the how it’s changed over the past two months.


I have some courgettes starting to grow. I really find it crazy to think that all of this came from a single seed. Nature, right?

My carrots and beetroot are looking good too. Think I will plant some new beetroot seeds in the gaps left in the row to give me a longer yield.

The main task left is to stay on top of the weeding. My neighbour has a big flowering bush on the fence right next to my veg patch, which has dropped loads of seeds onto it. On the plus side, I discovered some jasmine right next to it in my own garden. Jasmine is one of my favourite smells, so it makes being out in my little sunny garden even more pleasurable.

I’m glad that after quite a heavy initial investment of time to prepare the garden, it’s down to routine maintenance that doesn’t take too long. I feel like I have a lot on my plate at the moment, so I’m glad the garden can be relegated to the back burner. It’s clearly still there though- a doodle in a team meeting turned into this.


Mini update as I’m so pleasantly surprised by how well my pumpkin plants are doing. Eagle-eyed readers of my Watermelon Elephant post may have noticed that the photoshoot took place in my pumpkin patch. Watermellie was a project for the HPKCHC, for a challenge with a loose garden theme. I believe that watermelons and pumpkins are from similar families, so I thought it would be cute to tell a silly story about her emerging from one of my pumpkin flowers. I was doing some weeding today and that prompted me to write a separate post.

Here’s a reminder of how the plants first looked when I transferred them to the garden.

So fragile! A few weeks later, on 16th July, they looked like this.

I weeded afterward I took the pic, don’t worry!

Flowers soon started to appear.

Some of which hatched elephants.

Watermelon striped Elefante by Susan B Anderson

And here is how my plants looked on 3rd August.

Looks like I planted them a bit close together. Oops. But look at my babies!

Also, the plant that I thought was dead totally was a Jesus plant as it’s now flourishing. I think pumpkins must be pretty hardy as I nearly killed another plant through overzealous weeding and that recovered too.


Last weekend I stared death in the face as I squared up to one of my greatest fears. Well, to be more accurate, I stared snails in the face because I gardened and I am terrified of creepy crawlies. Basically, I don’t like anything that isn’t cute and furry, or brightly coloured.

I may have squealed rather a lot when a snail reared its tiny head at me, presumably gnashing its teeth in an attempt to intimidate me, but then it started moving very slowly in the opposite direction, so it was fine. I’m not sure when I developed my horror of minibeasts, though I do remember being repulsed when, at the age of about seven, I jumped off a swing and crushed a snail with my knee. It was nasty.

Anyway, one of the benefits of my recent move has been gaining a garden. It’s a typical London garden, i.e. tiny, neglected and mostly concrete, but a garden it remains. For the past few years I’ve had vague fantasies of living like The Good Life, as a self-sufficient woman rearing shit and growing other shit. Well, the journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step, and mine was the impulse purchase of a child’s pumpkin growing kit in Morrisons.

The first step was easy. I planted the pumpkin seeds in the tiny pot provided and left it to sweat. I was really pleased that some shoots came up, as I have a history of planticide.

Soon, my seedlings were too big for the confines of the tub, so I got some compost and managed to repot them without casualty.

I started getting them used to being outside. I begn buying and borrowing gardening equipment.  All the while, avoiding what was to come.


The jungle. What terrors would I find lurking in the undergrowth?

Spoiler: It was mostly woodlice.

I yanked at stuff , snapped twigs and raked at the earth with a tool borrowed from my mother, and an hour or so later, I had achieved this.

I’m pretty sure that at least one plant is already dead, but I planted it anyway in case it’s a Jesus pumpkin plant.

The wild plants in the rest of the bed are covered in aphids, so my next task is to make some spray to get rid of them. But I have a pumpkin patch of my very own!