Gardening, the Big Sky and our clever acrostic crossword
We all love boating in the summer, it can be heavenly, perfect for upping the pins and moving on or just to take a short break. Container grown plants can take a bit of a knock during hot weather, steel boats can get very hot and up on the roof there is maximum exposure to the elements be it wind, sun or rain. Should there be rain do not rely on that alone to water your plants. I happily use river and canal water – as long as there is no obvious pollution, however I would never use it on anything edible. Should it be very sunny try to avoid getting water on the leaves because this will cause burning.
Flowering bedding plants should be at their most exuberant now however they do still need a bit off attention. Remove faded flowers to encourage new ones to develop and dead leaves to prevent grey mould from setting in at the base of the plants where moisture will be trapped and therefore rot the stems.
If you are growing tomatoes consistent watering is essential because should it be erratic with the soil drying out you will get fruits that split open as they are ripening – especially in the smaller fruiting varieties. It is essential to keep water off tomato leaves because this will encourage tomato blight. Along with your toms you can still plant a few of the faster growing herbs to enjoy with them such as Basil, try some of the beautiful alternative varieties such as Purple Ruffles, Cinnamon or Lime Basil. Basil can be eaten as tiny sprouts or left to develop into more mature plants. Coriander is always top of my list and again is quick to grow however parsley can be a bit fickle. It is recommended that the seeds are soaked in warm water overnight to help speed the germination which still can easily take up to three weeks – on these grounds I always buy mine ready grown from the supermarket!
In looking for a way to secure a flower container to my boat during a blustery period I discovered the magic of rubber coated neodymium magnets. If your pot is of thin plastic a magnet can be dropped into the bottom of the pot or they can be glued to the base of the container and this will serve two excellent purposes; to keep the container off the paintwork and magnetise it to the boat.