Itís been a while since I added any details in the diary as
I have been away. My neighbour Malcolm has done a great job of watering
my plants, he mentioned he was around our place an hour one night and
his wife Diane had to search him out. Before we went away I layered my
sweet peas as they had reached the top of the canes. I grow them on the
cordon method which normally produces some outstanding flowers for
cutting and displaying in a vase. I do try and plant ones with a good
scent which does give an extra benefit. These flowers were picked by the
neighbour and I expect as you are aware this constant picking keeps them
flowering and are still good plants which should produce good long stems
and blooms good enough to enter some shows if I can find the time.
Figs 1, 2, 3 & 4 show the plants
before I started taking off the top leaves Figs
5, 6, 7 & 8 show the buds and flowers starting to show after
removing the top couple of leaves. You can see the fans are on timers so
only come on about 11am till 6 pm .Since I have returned itís been a
busy time checking the ties on plants and at the moment putting the
flower supports under the buds. This is a tricky job as you donít want
to punch holes through the leaves which is all too easy to achieve. The
weekís difference in bud and flower size can be seen from when I took
the buds on half the plants which are all mixed up around the
Bellcross nursery with the National Begonia Society
earlier in the month just prior to our holiday there was a good turn out,
I would like to thank Margaret and Malcolm for their hospitality during
our visit. You can see Fig 9 showing
the National Begonia Society President Mr Jeff Rhodes presenting
Margaret and Malcolm with a token showing appreciation from the society.
Fig 10 a close up of the presented
plaque. Fig 11 showing Malcolm
Margaret and myself in one of their green houses.
Fig 12 showing what left of the buffet
and Fig 13 others who have enjoyed
the day out in Yorkshire meeting up with other like minded people
talking flowers. This was the first time we have visited, it was a
pleasure to meet them both have a look around the plants and learn about
their growing methods This was the place where I have purchased plants
over the last few years in fact it may have been one of the first
Begonia I purchased, I know I did speak to Margaret when ordering.
Back in my greenhouse I started on Miracle grow then moved to
Phostrogen now trying chempak number 4 during the last few weeks as this
hopefully will make the flowers a better size using as advised on the
instructions. Margaret did mention she only gives her plants water and
lets the nutrients in her compost feed the plants although she does use
top soil from their own land after sterilising during the winter period
and this would hold a good amount of plant feed. Iíve got a couple of
weeks to the National show and the flowers donít look that big although
I have nothing to compare with as I didnít take any pictures last year.
Taking notes and pictures are useful which I didnít take either last
year thus making this diary a good reference for future growing with key
dates mentioned. Iíve done this many times planted something thinking I
will remember but unless labels attached you will forget over several
months. Weíve been having some hot weather at the moment so when Iím
home morning and evening I damp down the greenhouse floors which helps a
little to keep the temperature down slightly.
Fig 14 & 15 show the plants just before I start getting them
ready a busy time ahead.