Had an God awful panic. Went into the poly tunnel and there were burned chillies. Drooping and nearly dying. Have had to soak them all with the heavy loads of water. The chocolate and orange habanero have both been doused and placed into the ground with fish blood and bone. Couple of the bengle and Dorset Naga leaves were nipped beyond repair, so have been taken off. Think the pretty purple is a write off, and possibly one of the California wonder sweet peppers.
Really quite devestating, in underestimating how hot the poly and Wendy can get. Jamaican jerk and scotch bonnets have also been stuck in lots of water.
Bit of a panorama of the poly tunnel. We have assorted aubergines; black beauty, dancer,diamond and tres hative de barbentane. The THB is the most developed with at least two fuzzy flowers amongst the velveteen leaves.
Most of the chillies are flowering. Nigel has a lots of little buds. The California wonder sweet pepper has actually flowered. There are three of these and the plants are actually quite short.
At the back we have the two habanero varieties and then the nagas. All quite leafy; and slowly getting taller.
The second round of super hots also need potting up. Simply because, they had started to pick up a little pace with the sun light and being fed. Jamaican jerk and serrano have certainly got leafier and taller. The two scotch bonnets don’t seem to be enthusiastic yet.
In poly, the aubergines are just as sloth like. They are still there, and looking more like growing aubergines. Just doing it very, very slowly. There could any number of reasons. They probably don’t like the clay, it’s not hot enough, they like being divas, I don’t know.
The california sweet pepper is starting to flower. Small in stature, but flowering. Nigel seems to be okay, sat where he is. Third from the right of the door. He is a chilli and not the leader of the political part, okay?
It may well be, that some of the super hots don’t end up in the poly. I still have to also squeeze in a watermelon.The sweet crimson has all of one true leaf at the moment, and is being carefully monitored.
There is growth in the four tier blowaway. The danver carrots are starting to break through and become seedlings. Have yet to see any autumn king carrots. I have never had any success in germinating and propogating parsnips, and as you can see we have a handful of babies making an appearance. In comparison to the carrots, these have taken quite a while to come through. Not uncommon to the experiences of other people. Golden self blanching celery is also coming through. I appreciate that there are lots of seedlings in the pots. Alas, sowing them seed by seed is somewhat fiddly.
The chillies, bells and superhots are taking great strides. There is of course a variation across all of these given when they were all sown. Nigel, Pretty Purple, seranno, patio sizzle and hot thai are reasonable stout. Whereas as others, the hots and superhots, are actually quite slow growing. Early Jalapeño, Nigel, hot patio sizzle are starting to flower, which could actually be a sign of stress. All of these, are very, very thirsty. I observed that last year with the pretty purple rainbow chilli. Need a litre every other day, otherwise it would shed its leaves and flowers.
Arise of the triffids, the first batch! These are of course the aubergines. Early long failed to make it. So we have tres hative de barbentane, diamond, dancer and black beauty. Very, very leaf, and velveteen. Suggests that they are quite delicate at the moment. The aim, is to have them planted into the poly tunnel with the chillies and bells at the end of May. Prior hardening off will be required.
In other news, marketmore, femspot and crystal lemon cucumbers are germinating both in the four tier blowaway and the window sill. Hoping to sow runner beans and sunfloo’ers at some point. There will have to be rotation amongst the wendy house and four tier blowaway.No cabbages and brassicas yet. Though we did harvest some purple sprouting broccoli.
The last few days has seen mild spring like weather. Weather that window sill babies have been basking in; least of all the chillies. I am growing the chillies from cold, I am not using grow lights or heated mats. This means that the chillies are perhaps a little smaller, and their growth rate is little below than those with grown with sophisticated equipment. So one has a bit of capsicum envy.
See I know full well that at this time of the year, chillies will be diminutive. A couple more weeks, and they will start to pick up and plume. That does feel a little like a distant memory, and it’s quite a leap to fully fledged, foliaged plants ready to be transplanted to the poly.
Whilst the sun is out, the chilies are loosely lidded with a prop cover. They are sat on reflective aluminium foil to help absorb some heat and light to keep the plants from getting too cold at night and then keel over. With the second Superhots are sunk, I would like to be optimistic. However I’ve been told that Jamaican jerk is very difficult!
Have realised that the windowsill babies are getting on a bit. Some of the seedlings have started to grow past their baby leaves, albeit a little slowly. The aubergines have been growing quite quickly compared to the chillies. Thought I might as well pot everything on.
Seedlings are still a little small; but it is still very early. Perhaps won’t have more accelerated growth til later. I have for the moment removed the foodbag cloches. Just hope things don’t got pair shaped!
Finally, the cover for the 4TB has arrived. A little bigger than expected, but that is a lot better than smaller. I had purchased one that did turn out to be smaller, and of no use. This may be bigger, but it is also made of the same reinforced material as the wendy house and the poly tunnel. I am hoping, therein, that it lasts a while. That said, the cover that was replaced is in fact five years old. Apparently, the shop that made the 4TB has changed the dimensions, so I couldn’t an appropriate replacement. That said, to their credit, the company was very good about making amends. In the poly tunnel yesterday, it was a rather balmy twenty degrees. The best thing, that it was still there, and hadn’t floated off. The wendy house was there also, for which we are also thankful. The lyon prizewinner leeks are still there and quite snug too.
Tomatoes aren’t doing too badly at the moment. The vast majority of the seeds that were modularised have come through. The module was sat on the not very warm window sill, and so they did take their time. The babies were also a little leggy, which resulted in them having to be demodularised and then potted up. No mean feat, as I am not very good at pricking out and potting up. Which is why, I only sank singular seeds to begin with. In essence, at the moment, we have the same number of tomato plants as we did last year. It remains to be seen, if these will all achieve maturity.
On the next window sill, we have the the aubergines. Dancer, diamond, tres hative de barbentane and black beauty have all come through. I am still waiting for early long purple to germinate. There was a pleasant surprise in how quickly the aubergine seeds have come up.
Of the chillies and superhots, I have yet to see any of yellow scotch bonnet and orange habanero. Fire has been temporarily written off in failing to come off entirely. The dorset naga looked a bit precarious, having caught a cold; it looked as though it was going to keel over. I checked this afternoon, and it did appear to have rallied. I’m not hedging my bets. I would like it to survive, one has a dorset naga chilli challenge to try! Have resown some california wonder, as i had somewhat neglected to re-sow a sweet pepper. All those hot chillies, and no sweetness. One is thinking of all the possible chilli jam to be made.
I have kept all the babies in foodbag cloches. Mainly, as they are on window sills that don’t always stay warm. With some heat and light trapped, the cloche offers something of a security blanket. I am conscious that a sudden drop in temperature could wipe everything out. I would like to place the tomato babies in the 4TB, under a fleece. Just not sure if they would survive, would be a tragedy for them to be annihilated after being pampered for so long.