6th January 2017: early morning check up on the allotment plot, all is still except for a few birds chirping around, perennial flowers and plants are in hibernation and the last of the brassicas have slugs all over them!(I shall let the slugs feast as I have a plan to use them fairly soon!) The soil is too wet to work on. I shall leave the dig for another couple of weeks.
I love 6th January, its a day to get excited again! No sooner are the Christmas decorations put away; the heated propagator is taken out, washed and disinfected again as well as the seed trays and pots. Grow-lights and coir pellets are ready to use.
|Heated Propagator ready for use
The seed boxes also get a good clear out, (be brave to get rid of out of date seeds), new seed catalogues that arrived last month or so, get some serious amount of circling or page folding for seeds that need ordering.
The first seeds I make sure I have indoors; ready to plant on this day are Chilli Peppers, Sweet Peppers and Aubergine. These 3 varieties of seeds can be notoriously slow to germinate (can take up to 15 days) and require a longer growing season; so best to give them a head start, especially if like myself, don’t have a heated greenhouse or polytunnel, and have to rely on any floor space or windowsill space at home.
Coir Pellets need to be soaked in well and
allowed to drain before planting the seeds
Chillies: Bird’s eye
Peppers: Califorina Wonder
Peperone Corno Rosso
Aubergine: Black Beauty
Melanzana Violetta di Firenze
Melanzana Violetta Lunga 2
All the above are sown in coir pellets as well as some sown into small pots using John Innes No 2 compost topped with perlite.
|Too many chilli seeds to choose from!
|Own saved chilli seeds
Update, 2 weeks after sowing:
Some seeds have been a surprise success, like my Aubergine seeds: Black Beauty (pic above) which germinated in 6 days! But sadly non of the Sweet Peppers germinated.
I shall carry out another sowing of these sweet pepper varieties, leaving in place the first sowing, as these seeds may just germinate (having a very slow start).
My seed sowing process will be repeated this weekend, this is the very reason why I start of these 3 varieties of seeds so earlier in the year to avoid disappointment.
I have my job for the weekend, what are your jobs for the weekend?