My tomato seedlings are at the stage where they need to part company with their seedling buddies and move into larger accommodation on their own. When the second pair of true leaves emerge they’re ready for potting on.
When potting on tomato seedlings plant deeper than they were previously to encourage a better root system, this helps with watering during the summer months and helps to create a stronger plant all round. Don’t be afraid to bury them up to their necks, they’ll soon start growing tall again. Depending on the time of year you may need to re-pot again before planting to final positions, again plant deeper.
As usual I have an obscene amount of young plants, far more than I need but I always find good homes for them. This year I’m growing ‘Sungold’, ‘Cherry Red’, Gardener’s Delight’, ‘Money Maker’ and ‘Tigerella’ varieties.
When the time comes to plant my tomatoes to their final positions, they go inside the greenhouse in deep containers. I feed with liquid comfrey and mulch the surface of the containers with comfrey leaves to slow down evaporation of moisture, saving me time with watering. As the leaves break down they enrich the soil where the surface roots are.
Fingers crossed for a great summer, I’m looking forward to tasty home-grown tomatoes.
If you’re new to vegetable growing perhaps you’ve found parsnips tricky to grow? So far (touch wood) I’ve had good results with growing parsnips so I thought I’d share some tips on how I grow them:
- Buy seed fresh every growing season to increase germination success, germination is generally slow.
- Sow from March onwards, direct into the ground (once the soil has warmed) just under the surface of the soil, thin seedlings down to 6 inches apart. Parsnips are a root vegetable, they don’t appreciate being disturbed so it’s best to sow them where they are to grow (although you could start them off earlier in toilet roll tubes if you prefer).
- Well drained, fairly deep and stone-free soil is ideal. Growing parsnips in raised beds makes it easier to control the desired depth and soil conditions that parsnips require.
- Choose a sunny spot to sow seed, allowing plenty of space between rows. This will make lifting them easier later on.
- Don’t sow on a windy day, the papery seed will fly everywhere!
I use Mr Fothergills ‘Gladiator’ seed, a canker resistant variety (the main problem for parsnips). I highly recommend this variety from growing experience. I don’t ‘chit’ my parsnip seed before sowing (placing seed on moist kitchen paper until they sprout), I haven’t found germination a problem with the variety I grow. Parsnips can be left in the ground until the following February/March, frost will sweeten the flavour so don’t worry about them getting chilly!
There’s still time to sow parsnips for your Christmas dinner. Happy parsnip growing!
If you found this post helpful let me know, I’d be happy to do more on other vegetables!