Northern Exposure

Triumphs and failures on a window ledge.

The Last Post January 24, 2010

Filed under: bulbs,Seeds,Spring,Summer,Weather,Winter — northernwindowgardener @ 11:18 pm
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If you’ve been tracking this blog you’ll have noticed the gaps between postings have grown. Which is more than can be said for anything in the garden! That’s a little unfair as, despite the deep freeze, the tips of the first spring bulbs have somehow poked their way through the soil.

Rather than feel bad about not being able to give this the attention it deserves I’m putting it into its own deep freeze and leaving the last year’s postings for posterity. (more…)

 

A View with a Room August 7, 2009

Filed under: Colour,Flower,Indoor,Seeds,Summer — northernwindowgardener @ 11:58 am
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Street ViewFinally remembered to take the camera out with me to get a few pictures of the window boxes from street level. As you can see (hopefully) they’re too overflowing to turn around from inside any more so they’ll stay like this until the frosts come back and it’s time for the winter clothes to return. After spending the first few months thinking months ahead now I’m trying to do the opposite and just live in the moment – dismissing all thought of colder, shorter days.

The pictures below show just how much the nasturtiums have taken over. They were all planted directly into the boxes from seed after my idea of transplanting from seedlings proved to be a failure. Seeing how quickly they’ve grown now however I know that next year I don’t need to worry about getting them off to an early start. (more…)

 

Grow Your Own July 1, 2009

Filed under: Colour,Flower,Review,Seeds,Spring,Summer — northernwindowgardener @ 7:00 am
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LobeliaThose of you who have followed this blog or have somehow stumbled upon it and read a few postings will know that I tried to grow the majority of my own plants from seed for the first time. To say it was a steep learning curve would be fair but as it’s hardly a question of life and death (well, except to the plants of course!) so if there were as many failures as successes then it was no big problem.

Anyway some things were easier to grow than others so I thought I’d put together a little list of how I did. (more…)

 

Planting … Joel May 26, 2009

Filed under: Colour,Flower,Indoor,Info,Review,Seeds,Spring,Summer,Weekend Work — northernwindowgardener @ 7:00 am
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NoodlesI think it would be fair to say that the marigolds were both planted too shallow and more than ready to be planted elsewhere.

This picture of the extensive root system was repeated in all eight of the marigolds that were grown from seed. It’s quite satisfying to see just how much they’ve developed and they must like the conditions they were grown in. Some others like the nemesia and convolvulus haven’t fared so well while the verbena and brachycome have grown quite slowly and are still weak even though they’ve had lots of light and heat.

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Planting … Chris May 23, 2009

Filed under: Colour,Flower,Indoor,Info,Review,Seeds,Spring,Summer,Weekend Work — northernwindowgardener @ 7:00 am
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The Line-upI really do feel a bit bad for Chris. Out there on his own ledge, doing his own thing, travelling the path less travelled. And in this case, getting a random mix of everything that wasn’t getting used somewhere else.

The phrase ‘runt of the litter’ might be a bit harsh but the reality is that this is where all the strong, well-developed plants ran out. No geraniums, marigolds or shop-bought plants here. Instead it was a rather sad mix of verbena, asters, sweet pea and brachycome – none of which looked truly ready to flourish outdoors.

Unfortunately for them, and for Chris, this has become my experimental box. The remaining seedlings were basically split 50/50 between being planted outside and remaining indoors on the sunny ledge. We’ll see how they compare in a couple of weeks.

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Decisions Decisions May 4, 2009

Filed under: Colour,Flower,Indoor,Seeds,Spring,Summer — northernwindowgardener @ 8:17 pm
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Geranium LeafAfter being so sure that this was the time to plant out the window boxes for summer I’ve been overcome with indecisiveness. The geraniums and marigold seem strong enough to have a fighting chance but everything else looks a bit weedy and straggly. A visit to the garden centre didn’t reassure me, in fact it only made things worse.

I know I’ve said before that I’m aware that garden centre plants seem to be generally forced or at least grown in near perfect conditions and therefore are far ahead of home-grown specimens at this time of year. That may well be true but it’s hard not to compare my weak and straggly verbena with the strong, lush and healthy examples on the shelves.

The geraniums match up reasonably well but the brachycome, sweet pea and impatiens are all unworthy of comparison. The plants on the shelves seem tighter and bushier than my home grown ones as well. In some instances they look like completely different varieties although sadly I know they aren’t. (more…)

 

Idle Hands April 28, 2009

Filed under: Colour,Flower,Indoor,Seeds,Spring,Summer,Weekend Work — northernwindowgardener @ 7:30 am
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The potting shedWell they do say that the devil makes work for idle hands and while I’m not sure this is what the saying intended I’ve certainly been busy. After ducking out of a full scale planting of the window boxes due to the incoming bad weather I decided to attack the last set of seedlings in the propagator.

The sweet pea experiment prove that the non-chipped seeds germinated while the chipped ones didn’t. It was 3-0 in the shootout which alternatively means that none of the five chipped seeds germinated and two of the untouched seeds didn’t either. A bit of an odd result but I might have been too harsh with the chipping.

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