Life in the Highlands

Hello and thank you for looking at my Blog...i hope you enjoy my site. I'm pretty new to this but hope to keep it all updated with the progress of my garden. I've really enjoyed being able to start everything from scratch and the hard work has been worthwhile. I hope you enjoy seeing my progress too! Feel free to leave comments it's always nice to get feedback.

Thursday, November 02, 2006

November 2006

Despite the worst of the recent weather there are still some plants that are continuing to flower. The Fatisa Japonica is now starting to put out it's first flower of the year and i eagerly await this as it is the first year it has flowered as the Fatsia has to be mature before it will flower and mine is now three years old. The plant is grown in a pot and is needing to be repotted and i was in two minds whether to repot in the autumn or the spring, i'm so glad i decided to wait until the spring.

I find the Fatsia a stunning, architectural plant and is lovely when it's rains, as the rain stays on the leaves creating further interest and really set off the leaves. Fatsia is better as a specimen plant on it's own where it can make a nice impact. I was planning a fig to compliment it for next year in another pot.

I'm now picking Apple Greensleeves in earnest and they are lovely, i need to get these wrapped and stored for the winter. The recent high winds didn't help matters resulting in a quite a few windfalls so these will need to be eaten pretty quickly and i've left these on the window cill meantime. I've still one or two Scrumptious ripening but not in earnest yet. Likewise the Red Falstaffs are rather slow to ripen but one or two starting to come now.

Notice how the Falstaffs have the lovely red tinge to the skin, the more light and sun they get the redder they will become.

The grass is still growing, albeit slower but the needing a trim, the unseasonally warm weather isn't helping it at all. Some of the plants are starting to put out flowers whilst the fruit is still on them, so they are very confused. I noticed that the large trees have become bare in a week always a sign that winter is truely here. I just hope that the temperatures also start reflecting this soon. Not that i'm a fan of cold weather but the likes of the strawberries need a frosting whereas at the moment they're putting on too much sappy growth with the wet warm weather and they'll likely suffer if and when the colder weather comes.

My patio rose is also continuing to give it's best in the pot on the patio, despite the wetter weather, significantly shorter days and the cooler nights.

My runner beans that i've been growing for seed for next year are starting to turn black now and should be ready very shortly for harvesting. I'll need to get them off the vines and into the house for drying. The plants have produced much more pods that i had hoped for so should have plenty to give away too.

I've finally place my order for Asparagus, i decided to go for a mixed bed of green and purple Asparagus. Having had the bed fallow for two years to ensure that all the perennial weeds are gone i've just got to add more compost and well rotted cattle manure which i saved from the spring to the bed ready for the plants when they arrive. The ground is very free draining as it's a sandy loam and plenty of stones, also added to this is the fact that the bed is raised about 19 inches off the ground so that should ensure that the roots aren't subjected to water logging in the winter.

My compost bins are full to overflowing and a quick look today showed loads of 'black gold'. It's sounds daft but i get a real buzz from making compost. It's the idea of turning something useless into something very useful and putting it back in the garden. I need to get the bins emptied and on the soil which i should hopefully get done in the next week or two. I've stock piled stuff i couldn't get into the bins so that will make a good start for next years compost.

I made a hot heap in one of the bins when i did the strawberry bed and cleared some stuff in the ornamental garden, this rotted down in six to eight weeks, whereas my cold compost heap has taken all summer. Well worth the wait though. For anyone not had the pleasure of making their own compost theres a strange sense of completeness when you spread it on your garden ready for your plants for next year, like the circle is complete.

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