Friday, 27 March 2009

The First Lambs

Today when I went to check on the sheep I discovered the first lambs of the season had been born at some point in the early morning.

Tonight my ears are driving me crazy, they must hve caught the sun at some point but I'm not sure when as I thought it had been cloudy for most of the day.

Thursday, 26 March 2009

Dahlia's From Tubers & Seed.

Dirt Princess said...
I am a bit confused...are these the same dahlias with bulbs, or no bulbs? I have seen dahlias you plant from seed and bulbs.
The dahlia cuttings I showed you yesterday were taken from bulbs (tubers). These tubers were dug up last year and stored in peat in a frost free place and then brought in to growth in February. The tubers are several years old. The reason for the cuttings are mainly to increase the stock of a particular variety. When I buy new dahlias I just buy the one and grow it on for a year and then take cuttings from it the following year. See below for the dahlias with tubers, boxed and starting to send up new shoots.

Also you can grow dahlias from seed very easily but they are just the same sort of dahlia as the ones with tubers, if you keep the seedlings long enough they too will form tubers, this will happen over the course of the summer. Below is a picture of the bedding dahlias I have growing from seed.

If you want to know anything else just ask.

Wednesday, 25 March 2009

Taking Dahlia Cuttings.

A while ago I said that I would show you how I take dahlia cuttings, this also applies to certain other plants that will root from softwood cuttings. First of all you need to make sure you take the cutting from new growth and preferably with no flower, if you do end up with a flower attached pinch it off. You really want to be taking the cutting from just above a joint in the stem so that you have new growth of 3 to 4 inches long as below. The number 5 on the label you see is just to tell me the name of the dahlia. Rather than having to write Border Princess on every label I find it easier to give each variety a number as its easier to write down. I have a paper with the list of names plus a picture of the flower and the number I've given it so all I have to do to see what number 5 looks like is look it up on the paper. In this case Number 5 is actually 'My Love' and is medium sized white dahlia.

Once you have your material take it to a hard surface and trim off the stem to just below a joint as in the picture below. Use a very sharp knife as the cut needs to be a clean as possible. I use a modeling scalpel.

When you've cut off the stem below a joint remove the lower leaves leaving just 1 or 2 big leaves plus the growing tip as in the picture below. You can also see from this picture that the cuttings are about 3 inches in length.

Now fill a small pot with compost, I use a mix of half potting compost and half sharp sand but if you don't have the sand just compost will do, try not to over water it though. I add the sand to help drainage. Now push the cuttings in around the edge of the pot as you see in the picture below and then gently firm them in before adding a little water. They then need to be put somewhere bright and warm but out of direct sunlight. I pu mine in the warm greenhouse behind taller plants. A window sill in the house should be okay provided it doesn't et full sun on it.

A good idea with some plants is to put them inside a plastic bag as below. You do have to be careful of rotting if you do this though and its not something I would do with such as geraniums which are prone to rotting off at the best of times. It does seem to help with dahlia's though as they tend to droop all over the sides of the pots if not done like this.

Tuesday, 10 March 2009


Here are some Views of Whitby taken last week during our visit there. We had a great time and as you can see the weather was very good so that made things even more enjoyable.
This is the harbour, its three pics joined together
which is why there is a colour variation.
If you click the picture it will become larger for better viewing.

Looking along the beack towards the pier.

A view across the harbour to the church,the old abbey is out of sight behind the church.


Friday, 6 March 2009

North Yorkshire

Hello everyone.

Today me and Vicki are going to be visiting some of these places. As you will see I borrowed these pictures from the internet, we don't expect the weather to be this sunny. I will take some more pics for you whilst I'm away and post them some time after I return.

Robin Hood's Bay, the steep road down to the sea.
Pickering Bob.

Thursday, 5 March 2009

More From Lincoln.

Today me and Vicki are off to North Yorkshire for a couple of days but before we go I will leave you with a few more pics from inside Lincoln cathedral. These pictures are all taken of the chapel for the armed services. Not just the people from this country are remembered but also friends of ours.

In the chapel some of the seats are dedicated to various countries, this one obviously being to Australia


Wednesday, 4 March 2009

Lincoln Cathedral

Yesterday me and Vicki went to Lincoln where we visited the cathedral, below are some of the pictures I took for you. This first one is taken from a leaflet I got there.

I like the one below because it shows how the place is like built up of different layers

This one I like for how the light falls on a certain place, a bit like its coming from heaven or something.


Sunday, 1 March 2009

Gardening Gear.

Following Emily's lead (see post ) I've decided to post a picture of me in my gardening clothes. Maybe some of you might like to show everyone what you garden in - provided you aren't a nudist.