Monday, 7 July 2014

Photos Of A Sunflower and Making New Plants.

 If Van Gogh had lived in Ireland and owned a digital camera.  He would probably of taken the following picture.  I told you before when I went in Argos in Killarney and purchased a digital camera.  The helpful lady serving us asked us if we wanted batteries.  I heard my self ask her:

"What film does the camera take?"

Never mind.

Any road.  The missus took this picture of a sunflower growing between the new potatoes.

 I have started dividing and making more plants that we lost during 2010.  It was the worst Winter to hit Ireland in fifty years.  A lot of my perennials like Osteospermums ("Cape Daisies") and Hebes shrubs died because of the frost.  Like so many of our fruit and vegetables.  These plants are not native to Europe and Ireland.  We live on the Gulf Stream and normally we get very mild winters.  Not that I have ever got use to 'Gale' season from November to March.  I brought most of my plants with me in dustbin when we 'emigrated' from Blighty in 2001.  We even contacted the (wait for it) Plant Passport Office (I'd like a licence for my cat please") and they sent us a list of plants that we could and could not take to Ireland.

Regular readers will know the story of us pulling up at Fishguard Docks at three in the morning and the Welsh police ("Heddlu") asking us if we had any "lawn mowers" in the back of the Luton van.  It was the 'Foot and Mouth' crisis and the powers that be believed that 'powdered babies milk' and lawnmowers could spread it.  Never mind the international terrorists and drug smugglers.  Somebody could be smuggling a lawnmower.   You couldn't make it up!

There's an old gardening joke/conundrum:  "The simplest method of multiplication is division."


But yes it's true.  I  made twenty new plants the other morning.  Most people divide their perennials during Spring and Autumn.  They are getting watered twice a day and they don't seem to be taking any harm.  I will probably sell some in a month at a car boot sale to make some money.

I won't be selling my Osteospermum plants though.  I rescued two bedraggled plants from the garden and now I have ten.  The tunnel temperatures seem to be dropping at the moment.  It's quite common for the tunnel temperature to reach forty degrees.  It won't be long before we start taking lots of cuttings and 'rooting' them with hormone rooting powder.  Griselinia and Fuchsia hedge clippings is dead easy and they will get planted out in the vegetable plot to overwinter.  Then I will plant another hedge and probably sell a few hundred of them 'bare rooted' on the old carboot sale in Spring.  I suppose this is how plant nurseries start?  I'll probably put the plants outside in the veg plot now that it's showery weather.     Do you make regular division of your plants?


  1. I try to. Either from cuttings or digging them up amd chopping them up. Comfrey is the one I want lots of at the moment so I'm going to divide up some more of that and hopefully have a huge patch at the bottom of the orchard a few years time. I don't bother too much with flowers (I leave that to mum) but I might take some rose cuttings this autumn.

  2. Hi Kev. Hope you're feeling better. I think flowers (annual an perrennials) are great for pollination and pest control in and around the vegetable garden. I love visiting gardens open to the public. Especially cottage gardens with their informal nature. Perennials can also make you a few welcome pounds or Euro. I have made wild dog rose cuttings successfully. It's just a matter of pushing cuttings in the soil and leaving them to root. Look forward to reading your posts about your rose cuttings this autumn.


  3. Nice happy smiling face among the potatoes.

  4. Hi Cumbrian. Yes it does look like a happy smiling face. Sunflowers originated in North America and potatoes in the Andes in South America. The Cherokee Indians use to cultivate the sunflowers and eat their seeds. Would love to see fields of sunflowers growing. Thanks!

  5. Love that sunflower growing in the middle of your veg plot. We have a single maize plant growing in the middle of the tomatoes, and another in the courgettes, and would never think of pulling them up!

  6. Hi Vera. We deliberately planted the sunflower in between the potato rows. Wouldn't it be great if all our flowers grew among st the vegetables instead of the wild flowers -weeds? We have a few rogue potato plants flowering in differing parts of the veg plot. I haven't got the heart yet to discard them. Thanks!


Some Pictures Around Shaftesbury and Other Hardy Country.

Gold Hill in Shaftesbury.  Remember the Hovis advert?  I remembered watching the Grumble-weeds in Scarborough many moons ago doing Joe Gl...