Wednesday, February 18, 2009

More New Comers to the BG

Last week I took a day off from study (there are only so many Nazi memoirs I can stomach before really needing a supersized break) and spent it in the balcony garden. After the hot days it needed rejuvination. Given one of my obsessions is for symmetry I finally purchased a couple more small hanging pots to make sure each pole on the balcony had a pot.

Anyway for the hanging pots I had a different idea. Fern from LOTB had a wonderful post on combinations in pots. While I did not directly follow one of her wonderful predetermined combinations she got me thinking about colour and function and height and ... Well I looked around the balcony garden for things I already had, poppped to the nursery for some quick supplies and impluse buys and raided the seed drawers. The welsh sprouting onions needed to be separated and given a new home so they were firt on the list. I also had in my possession some interesting beetroot seeds. I have the golden ones already planted in a larger pot, around a leek or two (wonder if this combo will work), sprouting and overcrowding so looks like it is time to thin. Wonder what baby beet leaves taste like ... !!!

Around the sprouting onions, which still were way too crowded, and currently are being used like strong chives to thin them without waste, I planted some white beetroot and some slow bolt beetroot. It'll hopefully be mutli coloured borscht at our place in a few months time. Yes they are very crowded, it is a balcony garden trait that I really need to shake. So far so good. Some tiny seedlings poking their heads through.

In the other two pots I planted snap dragons (I do recall these being on Stuart at Gardening Tips'n'Ideas 5 most hated plant list, love that post because with all the responses it shows just how fickle and wide ranging gardeners can be, but of snapdragons I am a big fan and I guess this proves his 'they're everywhere' theory) with a ring of viola seeds. Sort of the wrong time of the year for viola, but whatever, I did it anyway. The snap dragons are beginning to open up, and even if they only last a day or two in the new heatwave I don't mind. Love the deep red and yellow the best (even though it appears to be a cross between magenta and pretty-in-pink pink in these photos).

So there you have it, a small update on the BG. Wonder how the plant combinations will go. What plant combinations are your favourite? Are there any wierd ones you would recommend that defy the logic of nature?


Jamie said...

Baby beet leaves are nice in salads, add a bit of colour too. When I sow seeds of these I always seem to sow too many, so the thinnings usually end up in a salad or a sandwich, depending on the time of day.

The only thing I find with potted combos is that teaming up plants which like the same amount of sunshine, food and moisture is what really counts to getting good results from both plants. As for colours, anything goes!

Good luck!

Chandramouli S said...

Wow, so many veggies! Good luck with them. How about planting vines in the hanging pots? Wouldn't it be beautiful to have flowers shuffling down to reach you!
Ah, I love the snadragons! Their bright colors are so attractive.

Anonymous said...

I love the scent of the snapdragon. I planted several bunches in various locales in the garden and it looks like they've all survived the winter. (Knock on wood.) The plant combinations of last year elude me now. (Senior moment.) However, I do remember one I was particularly proud of: Canna 'Bengal Tiger' and Columbine 'Woodside Strain.' The canna was the vertical and the columbine was a round clump. Both with chartreuse being the predominant color. Good luck with your veggies.

Zach said...

I love growing snapdragons from seed. Last year was my first time doing it, and I had such a wonderful success that I have to do them again this year. I planted "Black Prince" and "Black and White" snapdragons. One of them is an Heirloom, (I just forgot which one it is) They are not really black but deep red. If you want some of the seeds I would be more than willing to share them with you! You can see the pics of them here...

The first pic is the "Black and white" snapdragon.

prue said...

Hi Jamie - took your advice, tried the golden baby beetroot leaves in the salad last night - totally divine (as was the mortgage lifter tomato I tried with it)

Chandramouli - I have a bit of a veggie obsession, though have vowed to plant more flowers on the back on GBB Day.

Grace - I never actually knew they were scented, possible because at the moment the air is still so smokey. It feels like when i lived in London and was covered in grit from the Tube all the time. Cheers for the heads up, will have a smell when i am out on the balcony (possibly in about 3o seconds!)

Zach - wow those snap dragons are such an intense red! I have never grown them from seed (am still getting into the habit of gardening from seed) It is so much fun using heirloom seeds, feel like you are doing a service as much as getting a wonderful view! keep up the great work

Dan said...

Beet leaves are so good. You can eat the littler ones in salads and cook the bigger ones like spinach. I like it when the baby ones bleed their red juice into the salad.

You have some really nice seedlings growing, before you know it you will be harvesting them.