This week we be looking at how to successfully plant your own bulbs and tomatoes, producing flowering bulbs and ripe and juicy fruit.
Crocus, lily, tulip and daffodil are all categorised into ‘bulbous plants’. There are two main planting times for bulbs; plants that flower in spring need to be planted in autumn, and plants that flower in the summer should be planted in spring and early summer. When buying bulbs, check that they are healthy and as fresh as possible. Avoid bulbs that are damaged or feel soft, and instead go for firm bulbs. When planting your bulbs, it is important to consider the following:
1. Take time preparing the planting ground, taking out the weeds, loosening the soil and adding grit to very heavy, sticky clay.
2. Plant bulbs two to three times their own depth and around two bulb widths apart
3. Plant bulbs the right way up. If in doubt plant the bulb on its side
4. Replace the soil after planting, breaking down any large clumps and firm in gently
The most important tip in growing large, healthy flowering bulbs is to prepare the soil well at the planting stage. A rich, well draining soil with a balanced pH will feed the bulb and provide nourishment for growth and flowering.
Tomatoes can be one of the most satisfying fruits to grow. They are simple to grow from seed and can be grown in any garden, as long as they have a warm and sheltered location. It is important to choose the correct variety that is compatible to the space you have available. Greenhouses offer excellent growing conditions for tomatoes, but if you don’t have a greenhouse there are other options. Growing tomatoes can also be done outside in pots and containers too. Here are some top tips to help you grow your tomatoes successfully:
1. Grow your tomatoes where there is direct sunlight and shelter
2. Grow a few varieties – some will be more compatible to your location than others
3. Add compost to the soil
4. Use canes to support the tall varieties of tomatoes
5. Water often but in small quantities
6. Bring any unripened tomatoes indoors at the end of the summer. Placing them near a banana will help the tomatoes to ripen
7. Water the soil and not the plant
8. Cherry tomatoes are a good choice to grow outdoors, as they ripen quickly
However big your gardening space there is always space to plant and grow your own plants, flowers, fruit and vegetables. It’s all about utilising your space effectively and researching what seeds are compatible to the growing environment that you have.
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