News from the Growhouse

Our growhouse is currently crammed with plants. All of the vegetables here have been grown from seed by Ade, I can’t take any credit for any of these beauties…

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We’ve got cucumbers, tomatoes, celeriac, French beans and peppers, along with some sweetpea, marigolds and petunias and they all appear to be thriving. These are the same tomatoes and cucumber plants, incidentally, which started off on our window seat last month and which momentarily seemed to be suffering from a nasty case of legginess. Fingers crossed, it looks like they’ve recovered.

Also, the pea shoots and Greek cress which I sowed into pots on our window seat last month were a grand success! I started harvesting them both about two to three weeks after planting and got a handful of delicious salads out of them.

Now to sow the next batch…

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Legginess

Last night, as we were watching Food Prices: The Shocking Truth (an eye-opening programme on Channel 4 which totally reinforced our belief in the importance of growing your own veg and eating less meat – catch it on 4oD if you missed it), our attention kept wandering over to the window seat. Something wasn’t right and we both knew it.

“Do you think our seedlings are looking leggy?” Ade asked, during a commercial break.

He was right. Our tomato and cucumber seedlings which we have been keeping snug and warm on the window seat of our living room were indeed looking leggy.

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Ade did some research online and it transpired that this is a common occurrence for certain seedlings grown indoors. Although we placed them in a south-facing bay window, it was possible they weren’t getting enough light. The fluctuations in room temperature due to the central heating going on and off may have also been a factor. As for our leggy cucumbers, we may have planted them too early. Our pepper plants on the other hand, are loving the balmy climate of our living room, are happy with the light levels and are thriving – we’ve struggled with growing pepper plants in the growhouse for the last couple of years so this is good news!

This morning, Ade moved the tomatoes and cucumbers outside to the top shelf of the growhouse. Hopefully they’ll be okay out there. They’ll be getting more light (no venetian blinds getting in their way out here!) but it’ll certainly be cooler.

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I’ve also built up the earth levels in their pots to support their stems in an attempt to make them… er… legless?

While we wait to see how they respond to their new environment, I’ve taken advantage of the spot they vacated under our living room window and have planted some salad leaves. I sowed some cress (Greek) which we should be able to harvest in 3-4 weeks, and also some peas (Onward) which I had leftover from last year. I’m going to harvest them as pea shoots rather than let them fully mature this time.

We didn’t plant enough salad leaves last year so I’m eager to get it right this time around – I intend to plant oodles of different kinds!
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