I have never got over the magic of a germinated seed. Even to hardened gardeners, those first little signs of life are the proof that there is magic in the world. Although some of my vegetables are up and growing, some things have just peeked their tiny green heads above the soil. Here, for example, are my first ever germinated parsley seeds. These are notoriously difficult to germinate, but this year they’ve come through:
And here are some aubergines:
Don’t laugh, I thought they weren’t going to come up at all this year. Here is some basil, looking rather more sturdy:
I’ve been experimenting with these ‘peat free’ planting pod thingies and they seem to have worked really well, especially with tomatoes, peppers etc. You plant one seed (or if you’re a bit nervous, 2 or 3 or 4 as with the basil) in each pod and then plant the whole thing out once they’ve properly established. Seems to work. The other secret, which may explain the parsley, is an electric propagator. I really try to resit anything like this but it’s only one small tray and it seems to make all the difference just to get things up through the soil.
Here are the courgettes and marrows.
Here I have a problem. If you look carefully – excusing the lazy plant labels – you will see about 12 courgettes and only one marrow. what to do? Do I
1) Plant out all the courgettes but let some grow into marrows;
2) Sow some more marrow seeds, just in case;
3) Be patient and hope that some more marrows come up?
The problem with 1 and 2, of course, is that I will end up with 12 marrow plants which is probably more than even I can cope with – see here for my love of marrows.