Sunday, January 16, 2011

Recycling & Rethinking!


The new season begins and with it some recycling to start off seeds etc.I have lots of egg boxes which are just the right size and shape to chit the seed potatoes. I heard an advert on local radio during the week saying a garden centre had just got in stocks of seed potatoes already!
I know there is always a debate to chit or not, I have done it for the years I have been on the plot so cannot comment on not chitting.We could try a drill of unchitted and a drill of chitted to see if there is any difference in growth rate and yields.The one drawback to chitting which we encountered a couple of years ago was the trays of seed potatoes attracted rats into the shed and all the potatoes had to be discarded and replaced.
Plastic fruit trays with air holes already punched through the bottoms for seed sowing.Our local Aldi store usually has trays for soft fruit with a high lid which are ideal as mini incubators for seed.The small trays are useful if small amounts of seed are sown instead of using large seed trays which are wasteful unless you have space to plant out all of the resultant seedlings.
Loo rolls for long rooted plants like sweet peas etc, again a bit of a debate whether it is a better system or not.I remember reading a blog last year and different methods of sowing peas had been tried and the ones which had been allowed to grow freely in a window box did so much better.Plastic root trainers can be bought in garden centres and while expensive are reusable. I wonder if there are chemicals used in the manufacture of these loo rolls, while unbleached they have been stiffened and glued.
We will continue saving and meanwhile make up our minds on whether to use them or not.
I am going to pay a visit to the garden centre during the coming week to check out the seed potatoes available.
I have been missing from the blog as sitting at the computer is not conducive to keeping warm while having no central heating!My heating has been off for 10 days now but hopefully the gas fitter has the part by Monday and I will be back online and toasty warm.
The funny thing is I have been sleeping like a new born baby in the cold bedroom. I put a hot water bottle in the bed and snuggle under the duvet and once I drop off to sleep I don't move until the alarm goes off next morning.

7 comments:

Jo said...

You are amazing the way you re-use and recycle, Peggy. Is "Chitting" when you buy the seed potatoes and let them seed? I normally cut seeds off potatoes which have gone this way in the pocket and plant those. Successful harvest. To answer your question re the Thistle in my Scenic Sunday post: it's an exotic and a weed. (Beautiful though) It's a Scottish Thistle also called a Blessed Thistle. I love it when they flower. I'm not surprised you sleep so well in cold air. We sleep well here back in SA with only air from the opend window as opposed to the "canned" variety from air-conditioner which was on all the time in Khartoum. I hope you're soon warm though. (((hugs))) Jo

PeggyR said...

You make your gardening sound so interesting. LOL about the hot water bottle. I have to be cool when I go to bed even in the winter especially my feet or they itch!

Theanne... said...

So sorry about your loss of heat...hopefully it will be up and working as you anticipate. And you will be warm again...I like a cool bedroom too...definitely makes for better sleeping! I've never "chitted" any potatoes I grew...always planted directly in the soil or heavy mulch. So like you I have no comparison. Like that you recycle egg crates and such...people over here are starting to get back into recycling more and more! Have a peaceful day, Theanne

Kathleen said...

No heating in this weather is a bummer,but love the idea of the hot water bottle,the original central heating system even if it gave us chilblains! Amazing though the effect of fresh air on a nights sleep!Hope its back soon!

permaculturecottage said...

Good recycling ideas here...I'm going to pinch some!

Matron said...

I noticed yesterday that my garden centre has seed potatoes in already. I'm not sure whether chitting makes any difference or not, but they have to be kept somewhere cool, dry and light anyway.

Linda said...

Sorry to hear about your heating problems. But you're right - cold bedrooms give a great night's sleep. I could never sleep with the heating on. We have a window open for most of the year, but it's just a bit too cold at the moment.

I've used insides of loo rolls for sweet peas very successfully.