How does your polytunnel/greenhouse grow 2016?

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Odsox
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How does your polytunnel/greenhouse grow 2016?

Post: #287187 Odsox
Thu May 05, 2016 10:43 am

At last, things are beginning to happen after a long dreary winter.
This is the snapshot of my greenhouses and tunnels this morning.

The tomatoes in my small greenhouse look reasonably happy and with the warmer overnight temperatures will hopefully continue to do so.

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A view of one of my tunnels which is now almost full, with the last of the winter leeks still just about usable.

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Strawberries beginning to ripen in another tunnel (these are Buddy)

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Plus some more in my greenhouse hydro pipe. The ones in front are new to me, called Mara de Bois, an ever bearing cross between a regular sized strawberry and an alpine. The larger ones at the far end are Royal Sovereign.
The back pipe has an assortment of melons and a couple of cucumbers, none of them particularly happy at the moment.

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Meanwhile, up in the roof above the strawberries are what's looking like another bumper crop of grapes

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It's quite an eye opener comparing these photos with the same day last year of the same views.viewtopic.php?f=1&t=29193
Proof if needed that so far this year has been colder than last year.
Tony

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Re: How does your polytunnel/greenhouse grow 2016?

Post: #287189 bonniethomas06
Thu May 05, 2016 1:20 pm

Wow! It is so uplifting seeing things growing. Thank you for the fix!! Everything looks wonderful - a few more weeks of this sunshine and they'll be romping away.
"A pretty face is fine, but what a farmer needs is a woman who can carry a pig under each arm"

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diggernotdreamer
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Re: How does your polytunnel/greenhouse grow 2016?

Post: #287195 diggernotdreamer
Fri May 06, 2016 10:29 pm

I just need to move southwards, we have had frosts all the time, last one this morning. Planted out some tomato plants as they are getting too leggy in the root trainers and heated cable propagators, had to make huge fleece cosies for them, they seem to work ok. Strawberry plants flowering but no fruit yet. Spuds up and doing very well, but not flowering yet. We still have very cold evenings and frosty mornings here in the North West

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Re: How does your polytunnel/greenhouse grow 2016?

Post: #287196 Odsox
Sat May 07, 2016 8:17 am

I do sympathise DnD, when watching the weather forecast I have noted that you very often seem to be in the coldest area of Ireland.
Years ago before we had even imagined moving here, the newspaper weather report of the day before very often had Schull, County Cork as the warmest place in the British Isles during the winter months.
Coincidently, I now live about 7 miles from Schull, County Cork. :lol:
Tony

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Re: How does your polytunnel/greenhouse grow 2016?

Post: #287197 Flo
Sun May 08, 2016 7:17 am

My greenhouse is about to get some serious stuff in it today. It's produced a lot of marigold seedlings which have gone to the parish council tubs (well in a few weeks that will be) and to the next door neighbour who is doing family hanging baskets. Must sort out the few trays that are still hanging about there - one needs to be up on the allotment but that will possibly be tomorrow.

The sweet bell peppers and the jalapeno need potting on into final size tubs which can go in the greenhouse most of this week but which may need some protection at the weekend when temperatures are supposed to drop off. The tomatoes will stand another week on the window sill I think (late planting).

It's only a very small greenhouse but it fits in a small garden, is big enough for the one of me and the two of the family up the road.

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Re: How does your polytunnel/greenhouse grow 2016?

Post: #287198 Green Aura
Sun May 08, 2016 7:46 am

I've just returned from Finland with a raging chest infection (bloody planes :angryfire: ), so my OH has had to do the polytunnel this weekend by himself. He's planted up the half dozen tomato plants and a couple of mini ones in hanging baskets; the runner and borlotti beans which we plan to grow this year; the turmeric root which sprouted all by itself on the kitchen counter (we're hoping that potting it up won't kill it); a small grape vine which we thought had died last summer but strangely seems to have revived and a pumpkin, which is also a mini version which we can hopefully train up rather than along the floor.

That's it, all bought in I'm afraid. We've been so busy elsewhere with work in the house and family business that's all we can manage. Today, if it stops raining,he's going to plant the onion sets.

It's been so dreich (just as it sounds - cold, wet and bleak) thus far that we're even further behind than our normal geographic delay. If it is the same as last year we may well have to consider those grow lights OJ kept trying to persuade me to get. Or go and live with odsox. :wink: :lol:
Maggie

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Re: How does your polytunnel/greenhouse grow 2016?

Post: #287209 Odsox
Wed May 11, 2016 11:00 am

Green Aura wrote:I've just returned from Finland with a raging chest infection
Green Aura wrote:Or go and live with odsox

You needn't think you can bring your lurgy down here young lady :shock:
I've got a spare piece of land big enough for a 40' x 12' tunnel, but you ain't having my greenhouse. :lol:
Tony

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Re: How does your polytunnel/greenhouse grow 2016?

Post: #287210 Odsox
Wed May 11, 2016 11:13 am

I just realised that I didn't include a photo of my 2nd tunnel, not that there's much to see at the moment.
The beans are climbing French beans and the bush thing through the strings is a pomegranate. The vine is a black grape and is going to have a reasonable crop this year. It will eventually have three rods going over the hoops.
The hydro pipe is half full of Little Gem lettuces and the tomatoes are the late sown replacements.
The empty space down the end on the right is where my winter brassicas will go, sprouts, Jan King cabbage and PSB, and on the left is actually spare (a new experience for me), so after racking my brain cell as to what to put in there, I decided to fill it up with Quinoa plants.

WPT.jpg
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... and one from the conservatory of my peppers just starting to flower.

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Tony

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Re: How does your polytunnel/greenhouse grow 2016?

Post: #287212 Green Aura
Wed May 11, 2016 9:09 pm

Ooooh, our peppers have got flowers too! Chillies that is, not bell peppers. :cheers:


Odsox wrote:I've got a spare piece of land big enough for a 40' x 12' tunnel, but you ain't having my greenhouse.


Could I have a 30' x12' and a caravan instead? :wink:
Maggie

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Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one's courage. Anais Nin

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Re: How does your polytunnel/greenhouse grow 2016?

Post: #287853 Odsox
Sun Aug 14, 2016 1:00 pm

Update ...

My west tunnel at the moment, I found out that if you grow Quinoa in a tunnel they grow to over 8 feet tall. Soon it will be time to start harvesting, winnowing and all that.

Quinoa.jpg
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.... and a picture of the other side of the path. Brussels sprouts looking good (for those that like sprouts that is) and the front one is a PSB.

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Tony

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Re: How does your polytunnel/greenhouse grow 2016?

Post: #287861 Flo
Mon Aug 15, 2016 6:46 am

My triffid bell peppers are doing well, the hot pepper that I thought wouldn't has and the tomatoes are about to do good - late ripening. I shall put a lot less in next year for ease of watering.

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Re: How does your polytunnel/greenhouse grow 2016?

Post: #287863 Green Aura
Mon Aug 15, 2016 7:46 am

That's a perennial problem for us, Flo. We always overfill the polytunnel, as we did the greenhouse before. We're doing better since we went back to using crates to grow, rather than beds - they're self-spacing to some extent.
Maggie

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Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one's courage. Anais Nin

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Re: How does your polytunnel/greenhouse grow 2016?

Post: #287865 Green Aura
Mon Aug 15, 2016 8:05 am

Great looking quinoa, Tony, do you think there'll be a year's worth?

Don't forget to wash it really well, it's coated in saponins. I soaked some bought (supposedly already pre-washed) quinoa the other day. I don't usually bother - I'm not that keen on it really so we don't have it that often. By the time I came to rinse it there was quite a thick layer of what looked like soap foam on the water. It rinsed off with no problem and, on cooking the quinoa, it was very different tasting - I discovered that I actually rather like it. It must have been the residue of this soapy coating that I was tasting. And yes I always wash it, just hadn't soaked it before.

I soak all grains and dried pulses usually, in the same quantity of water to grain, with a good splash of either cider vinegar or lemon juice, for about 6-8 hours. Seeds (like quinoa) I generally don't bother - well I hadn't but I will in future.

Have you ever grown amaranth? I'm thinking of having another go next year. Apart from having gorgeous flowers all parts are edible. I didn't like it much when we tried it a few years back but I'm thinking it's worth another shot.
Maggie

Never doubt that you can change history. You already have. Marge Piercy

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Re: How does your polytunnel/greenhouse grow 2016?

Post: #287878 Odsox
Mon Aug 15, 2016 2:17 pm

Green Aura wrote:Great looking quinoa, Tony, do you think there'll be a year's worth?

Don't forget to wash it really well, it's coated in saponins.


I've no idea what the yield will be Maggie. I grew some outside a few years ago, which I just found was actually 2008, and I grew 5 plants and got 300g of grain.
This year it's in the tunnel with huge plants and there's 32 of them, so your guess is as good as mine. If there's enough to stop buying Basmati then I'll be happy.

The reason for the 8 year gap between growing it again is the pain of washing it. The instructions were to wash in cold water until it stopped foaming, which took ages and very cold hands, and that was just for 300g
I was searching for something else and came across washing Quinoa that recommended hand hot water for the job, which sounded better. Then I found someone recommending placing the grain in a mesh bag and running it through a washing machine on cold rinse, which sounded even better.
The problem with soaking it before cooking requires a modicum of forward planning, and I ain't that organised. :lol:
Tony

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Re: How does your polytunnel/greenhouse grow 2016?

Post: #287929 Odsox
Mon Aug 22, 2016 6:42 pm

Green Aura wrote:Don't forget to wash it really well, it's coated in saponins. I soaked some bought (supposedly already pre-washed) quinoa the other day. I don't usually bother - I'm not that keen on it really so we don't have it that often. By the time I came to rinse it there was quite a thick layer of what looked like soap foam on the water

I harvested a small quinoa plant today and tried your soaking before cooking, instead of washing before storing like I did last time.
Unfortunately it didn't work. I soaked it in several changes of water over about 5 hours, then brought it to the boil and changed the water again, but it was still bitter.
Not that it mattered this time as I was experimenting with bean burgers and the cooked quinoa was destined for that as a filler, so totally lost in the mix with no trace of bitterness.

I wanted to try that before the rest is harvested to see which way is best. Now I know and it looks like the washing machine will be pressed into service.
Tony

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