Greenhouse Year – April 2012

It’s not as full steam ahead as I remember last April in the greenhouse.   The change in weather with cooler temperatures than last year has meant that the seedlings aren’t sprinting away as much which I suppose gives me a chance to keep on top of things but at the same time means that plants aren’t moving out and making space for the next seeds as quickly as I would like.

I have sown my set of healing plants from South Africa.  They are in the mini propagators which are on a heated tray.  I’m not sure it is sunny enough for them at the moment but we shall see.  In case you are wondering the six plants I am trying to grow are:

Coleonema pulchellum
Cotyledon orbiculata
Geranium incanum
Aloe ferox
Bulbine frutescens
Leonotis leonurus

The pack comes with instructions of their medicinal use and how to use them which I find quite fascinating.

I am really pleased to have germinated some Nicotiana.  I am sure some of you will be saying big deal but its taken me 3 years to get them to germinate.  I discovered at a propagation workshop last autumn that I was probably subjecting them to too much heat so this year I sowed them, didn’t cover the seed and popped them on the bottom shelf – success.

I’ve sown so much this year I have had to invest in another grow house. It has been worth the money as it has meant that I can move things on quickly which I think gives you a more robust and healthy plant.  I would show you the inside of the other growhouse but it had started to rain when I took these photographs in fact it had started to hail so below is all you will see of the wooden grow house this month.

I have also written a guest post for Notcutts about my greenhouse which you can read here

If you have a greenhouse and would like to join in this meme on the 20th of each month please do, just post a link in the comment box.



15 Comments Add yours

  1. elaine says:

    I agree with you that things seem to be moving slowly on the seedlings front – like you I still have sowings to make but am running out of space – if only it would warm up a little and stop raining for five minutes so I can put out plants that are ready to go outside.

  2. Andrew Tapp says:

    I’m jealous of your greenhouse action! I just started using a small one last year (looks like you have one like it). This year, I built a wooden flat to start some seedlings and I secured the greenhouse with some zip ties (I had problems with the wind last year).

  3. Nell Jean says:

    It’s exciting to see so many tiny seedlings. They seem so slow now but in a few weeks, the difference will be spectacular! I’m commenting using my WordPress account (the last post there is also about the greenhouse) but the current greenhouse link is here:

    1. patientgardener says:

      Hi Nell – thanks for joining in this month, I have left a comment on your post

  4. b-a-g says:

    I understand that nicotiana seeds need to be exposed to 14hours of sunlight at day before they germinate.

    1. patientgardener says:

      Hi Bag – hmm maybe not covering the seeds has helped as well

  5. Christina says:

    You have so much Helen! You put me to shame! I think you are right too much heat is just as bad as too little. I found Nicotiana difficult to germinate he first time but the few plants that did grow then self-seeded quite well in the garden so I’ve not bothered to sow them again. here’s my link:

  6. Elephant's Eye says:

    look forward to seeing how your little South Africans come on. I could use some Leonotis, mine have left.

    1. patientgardener says:

      Hi EE – sorry your Leonotis have left. I will excited if these seeds just germinate!

  7. Very impressive, Helen – all very neat and tidy; puts me to shame. Though I’m reassured to see that your tomato seedlings are similar to mine (having just seen that Christina has a tomato already!). I grew nicotiana from seed a couple of years ago and don’t bother now as I just dig up and replant self sown seedlings. Dave

    1. patientgardener says:

      Hi Dave – we must remind ourselves that Christina is in sunny italy and not be hard on ourselves. I am hoping that if I get them to grow my nicotiana will self seed in future years

  8. My tomato plants are minute! I have planted a feast of vegetables in my greenhouse but only the lettuce and cauliflower have made appearances … my husband doesn’t like cauliflower but this is my first year as a veg grower so I bought EVERYTHING!!

  9. Yvonne Ryan says:

    Hi Helen – from Yvonne NZ – All looks very productive. It’s too hot here for a glasshouse. They like them in the south of the South Island. My grandson Luca helped me to plant sweet pea seeds in peat pots, some for him to take home. He also took some sugar snap peas home. I had a good go at my b-oxalis to clear the way for self sown primulas and opium poppies. They are coming up already so have to be careful. The poppies DO’NT like being moved, but he primulas can be spread around to fill in spaces. My husband has been attacking the privet again, but I leave some to give shade to hostas, palms, fuschias etc. Very hot today 22degrees – why not in the summer!!!?? We are off the see Jersey Boys – I was a young mum when that music was around so looking forward to it. Not sure if dancing as we are in cheap seats up back and a bit steep!! I’s in Auckland for just over a month. We have been a while catching it up. A daughter saw it in Melbourne.

  10. Oops I’m a bit late…here’s my submission:!/2012/04/greenhouse-year-april-2012.html

    Your greenhouses look so productive, I’m inspired to get on with some more seed sowing before I start collecting plants for the hanging baskets!

  11. I finally bought a small one with a plastic cover to help harden off the seedlings outdoors…now it has gotten cold again more like March…seedlings are confused and relegated to the indoors again

Please feel free to leave comments as its always lovely to get feedback. I try to respond to comments as much as possible but sometimes life and work get in the way but I will do my best to respond especially if your comment is a question.

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