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#16 Spoon

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Posted 05 May 2010 - 04:40 PM

Is it really only three plants to a grow bag?

#17 gekko

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Posted 05 May 2010 - 04:57 PM

My parents' cats and chickens get along just fine. Both seem to have a healthy respect for each other. The cats don't want to get pecked so keep their distance. You often see chickens and cats roaming around happily together on farms so I don't think there's a problem. The main issue is keeping Mr. Fox out. My folks' chickens are free range during the day but put themselves to bed with a timed door at night. That might not work so well in London though as you get more foxes during the day.
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#18 fungigirl

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Posted 05 May 2010 - 06:58 PM

To make liquid feed get an old bucket or container and fill about a third with poop, top up with water give it a good stir and leave to ferment for about a month. Once it is ripe dilute by 20:1, when using it try not to get it on the leaves as it tends to burn them.

Chickens we have lost one to a fox it was at 10.30 in the morning, hubby went to answer the phone and in a matter of seconds it had killed one and injured another. We now have a very large super secure run for them. As for cats we have four and they are fine with them we also have a very large dog (Japanese Akita) and he is fine with them.

#19 RachelF

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Posted 06 May 2010 - 05:26 AM

My parents' cats and chickens get along just fine. Both seem to have a healthy respect for each other. The cats don't want to get pecked so keep their distance. You often see chickens and cats roaming around happily together on farms so I don't think there's a problem. The main issue is keeping Mr. Fox out. My folks' chickens are free range during the day but put themselves to bed with a timed door at night. That might not work so well in London though as you get more foxes during the day.



My cats are the wimpiest ever so they would probably not like chickens. But I think we have enough room for both. At our place in France the semi feral cats from the farm next door do indeed oftern trot around with our neighbour's chickens when they stray into our garden, but as you say keep a wary distance.
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#20 moc

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Posted 06 May 2010 - 07:30 AM

My cat is also fine with the chickens, walks among and sunbathes amongst them nonchalantly, she ignores them, they ignore her. Funny creatures!

Spoon, I have no idea, sorry! What plants do you want to put in the grow bag? Does anyone watch The Edible Garden on BBC2 Wednesday nights?
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#21 Spoon

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Posted 06 May 2010 - 08:37 AM

Toms, cukes and peas. What do you think? All the bags seem to say three but I reckon each could take more. I am hopeful that somebody will agree with me else Mr Spoon is going to file when I carpet all outside space with 20 to accommodate the many, many seedlings that are on their way at the moment...

Saw last week's Edible Garden. Thought it was charming and that Alys sounds like Kirsty Allsopp if you're not looking at the screen. Have recorded yesterday's. Was it good?

#22 moc

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Posted 06 May 2010 - 09:00 AM

Tomato plants can grow quite big... you could try putting more than 3 in, but you might need to relocate them later on, or you could prune them to grow higher rather than wider? Peas I should think you can sow quite thinly as they grow up, not out, and cucumbers do spread quite a lot so would benefit from being on a shelf or a raised bed (or bag!) if possible, so the 'fruit' can hang down, rather than take up space across the grow bag, so I would squeeze a few more of those in and see how it all goes. You should have some big pots handy too tho incase the grow bags get too crowded!

Didnt see yesterdays yet, but it is a sweet show and reflects quite accurately our own aspirations :)
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#23 Spoon

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Posted 06 May 2010 - 09:20 AM

Thanks. I agree. I'm constantly considering ways to get round the need to take up valuable floor (ground) space at home. Envy you your allotment but, even without the waiting lists, I'm not sure I could commit to growing away from home at the moment and so plans for subtle domination of the immediate vicinity of the house continue to form in my head.

I am seriously considering disguising some grow bags among the trees near us or planting directly into the ground. The undergrowth is quite thick and the trees could act as support for the climbers. And it's south-facing! A whole new meaning would be brought to "I'm just going out to get stuff for dinner" if it were followed not by the sound of footsteps going off towards Sainsbury's but by rustling behind the fence and the odd snapping twig.

My colleague has tomato plants doing brilliantly in the hothouse formed behind our office double glazing. She said she had vines trailing all over the kitchen last year.

#24 moc

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Posted 06 May 2010 - 09:45 AM

As you point out, the down side of an allotment is having to travel to it every day - in the summer especially, to water it, this may become a wee bit tiresome :D

We grew everything in our garden last yr, which is predominantly decked, so were also very short on space. Can I pass on a top tip - the 99p stores (we have one in Streatham, not sure where your closest one is) offer a great variety of garden accessories like canes, netting, slug pellets, trellises etc. I think Wilkinsons in Penge could also be worth a visit?
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#25 gekko

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Posted 06 May 2010 - 10:00 AM

I haven't grown any veg for the last couple of years but when I did I used to be overwhelmed with tomato plants. They look so harmless when they are tiny seedlings but they can grow really tall and quite bushy. It depends on the variety (mine were mainly Gardener's Delight). I'd say three to a bag would be about right, four might be pushing it.

All this talk is making me want to grow again but it's hard finding the time with my 3 hour round commute and my other hobbies. I may do some herbs and salad leaves but that will be about it. We were at a friend's BBQ last weekend and a guy brought loads of raspberries from his allotment (harvested last year and frozen over winter). They tasted amazing and I fear I'm getting the bug to grow again.

I can recommend growing sugar snaps up canes and Gold Rush courgettes as well. Both did well for me previously.
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#26 Spoon

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Posted 06 May 2010 - 10:01 AM

Can you share watering with an allotment neighbour and only go on alternate days or some such?

That is a top tip. Thanks. I have to bear in mind aesthetics as well, given that Mr Spoon must live and sleep in our vegetable patch. I was looking either for a pale mesh to cover the walls as a support or I was going to use parcel string in one area because the plant foliage will hide it and I have already ear-marked places to tie the string from and to.

All this and still room for deckchairs and the occasional bbq! It is a mini mammoth undertaking of thought.

#27 moc

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Posted 06 May 2010 - 10:19 AM

Echoing what Mel says, we only had 2 tom plants last yr, and they were MASSIVE.

I put pics of what we did in the garden last yr on Facebook, which is where I share all my pics with my friends - will send u guys a link by PM :)

Sitting among all those plants growing in the summer will be amazing tho - surrounded by bees and butterflies and green leaves and the bright colours and lovely smells of homegrown fruit and veg.
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#28 Spoon

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Posted 06 May 2010 - 10:41 AM

Fabulous!

You've reminded me I need to get lavender.

#29 Sylvester

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Posted 06 May 2010 - 12:42 PM

What an impressively industrious lot you are ... we only manage rhubarb, raspberries and plums which of course all look after themselves, pretty much. But my daughter did buy me an alternative Mother's Day present of a bag of seed potatoes ready-planted in a hemp bag - and they're doing very well! I am getting rid of our greenhouse as it's not being used, to be replaced by a nice summer-house :rolleyes:
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#30 Spoon

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Posted 06 May 2010 - 01:28 PM

Yum. Fresh potatoes are amazing.

I have just been out for some air. Where I work doesn't afford me the opportunity of browsing round a garden centre but I have nevertheless managed to acquire rocket seeds for the salad bowl and some sweet peas to grow among the edibles.

Hard to get nice, unusual and correctly sized pots that will please everyone - the plants and us. I wanted to look round the triangle on Monday but not many shops that might have had things like that were open.

My seedlings are in peat pots. They say to plant out lock stock when the roots break through the sides. I have no idea when this will be for tomato plants and cucumbers; not used these pots before. Anyone know?