Today I had to go and get more compost. This included:

  • 3 x 30 leter bags of seed compost 
  • 2 x 75 leter bags of multi purpose compost 
  • 1 x 50 leter bag of ericaceous compost 

We will use the seed compost for putting in pots when we take cuttings , sow seeds in trays etc. 

We will use the ericaceous compost to put round our roderdendrum plants thst are by our gates so they can feed of their nutrients all winter.

We will use the multi purpose compost when potting plants on and also dig some into the flower beds to make sure they are rich in nutrients.


What do we do with our tree and veg bed produce 

Apples – 7 trees

  1. Eat 5% of our apples 
  2. 95% go to Ringden farm ( by the side of A21 Flimwell) where the apples are pressed into apple juice ( last year we had 105 bottles) 

Plums – 2 trees

  1. Plum jam ( useually make around 14 jars) 

Greengages – one very small tree

  1. Lucky if we get 10 greengages so just end up in fruit bowl 
  2. Hopefully we will get more in years to come 

Damsons – 4 – 5 trees in a clump 

  1. Jam
  2. Chutney 
  3. Sauce 
  4. Muffins 
  5. Sell

All items below just get put in salads when we make them:

  1. Tomatoes 
  2. Salad leaves 
  3. Beetroot ( leaves from plant used too)
  4. Beans
  5. Peas
  6. Strawberries 
  7. Raspberries 
  8. Blackberries 

Winter vegetables:

We are planting several vegetables over the winter.

  1. Spring Oinions 
  2. Purple sproughting Broccoli 
  3. Carrots 
  4. Parsnips 
  5. Chard 

What do you do with damsons?

In the garden we have a few damson trees. For those of you who don’t know what damsons are they look a bit like small plums (see picture below) and are also a fruit. 

Due to the small stones inside them they can be very difficult to cook with ( if you are not prepared to remove the stones). 

Some of the things we do with them are:

  • Damson Jam and Chutney (currently made 30 jars this year) 
  • Damson sauce ( occupies 1/2 a drawer in our freezer) we use it on desserts in the winter
  • Damson Muffins 
  • Sell them – this year we sold a few kilograms to a company that will turn it into Gin 
  • Any excess we give to our local farm shop ( if they want them) or we give them away to friends 

Tropical plants from a garden tour in Barbados 

At Great Dixter they have a area of the garden called the exotic garden. I was inspired by this area and decided to try and grow some exotic plants at home consisting of some succulents and a canna. So when I had a opitunity while on holliday to have a tour around a exotic garden I could not resist. ( Picture below is part of the exotic garden st Great Dixter) 

Yesterday I went on a tour of a 14 acre garden near the hotel. On the tour I came across lots of tropical plants and trees that grow well in this hot climate. One of the plants the Gide was talking about he snapped off a leaf and it already had roots etc as if it was a developed cutting. So amazing. 

For example the picture below is of a flower bed. The plants in it were taken as cuttings just 3 months ago and are now plants in the soil thst look like they have been established for years. 

One of the first trees I came across was the Traveller’s Palm. This stores water in its trunk to use later in the year when it is scarce. You cal relive the water by pulling on the trunk. 

The flower below comes from a plant called the pride of Barbados. It was put into the country’s currency to prevent countifits being produced. 

Below is a plant called papyrus it was once used to make paper back in ancient times. However, now it just grows by the water and looks pretty. ( the plant I am referring to is the one growing on the bank of the pond on the left and side).

The tree below is called the Flamboyant tree. It has bright red flowers hence why some people call it the flame tree.

The plant below is called the firecracker cactus. This is becuse the small things on the end of the leaves can crest a cracking sound.

The final plant is alo Vera It grows by the roadside and is apparently good for your skin. However, it will stain fabrics very badly and there is no way of getting the stain out.