Our garden: August 2013

August has been a busy month in the garden. I’ve been planting seeds, harvesting lots of chillies and having a go at taking cuttings.

Bees on oregano flowers

Happy bees on flowering herbs

Nearly all the herbs have come into flower which the bees seem to be enjoying. Oregano is the most popular with mint following closely behind.

Group of basil seedlings

Basil seedlings

I got fed up of potted supermarket basil dying easily so I planted some basil seeds. They’ve grown really quickly and are starting to get their first true leaves and smell of basil. I think I’ll probably divide the seedlings between 2 pots soon as I put far too many seeds in! I always seem to do it, I don’t know if it’s a skill or a curse.

Strawberry runners

The strawberry plants cast runners and had rooted sufficiently to be cut away from the parent plant. I’ve potted 6 so far and am hoping to get a couple more by the end of the season.

Long roots on strawberry runner

Strawberry runner

I was surprised how big the roots are for such small plants. Once potted in compost they started to grow new leaves quickly. I lost a couple because I potted them while the roots were too small. They couldn’t get enough nutrients and water through the little root so they just shrivelled up and died. Lesson learnt.

Strawberry runner potted in plant pot

Mint cuttings

I took some rosemary cuttings at the start of the month which failed miserably, but the mint has taken really well. I cut back a sorry looking mint bush and (to my surprise) within a week new shoots were appearing in the soil so I snapped a piece off and put it in a pot of compost.

Mint cutting with roots

Mint cutting (of sorts)

I now have a new mint plant soaking up the sunshine.

Mint cutting potted in plant pot

The hydrangea has started to get pink spots on the petals which looks a bit like rain drops. I read that acidity can turn hydrangeas pink, so I’m wondering if something acidic has dropped on them. Either way I quite like having polka dot flowers.

White hydrangea head with pink spots

Chillies

The Anaheim chillies are ripening up nicely. The leaves are looking a bit scraggly now but the chillies look perfect and are about 12cm long. I picked my first Habanero the other day but I think out of the two, these will be a better heat level for a wimp like me.

Ripening anaheim chilli

Anaheim chillies

And lasty, I saw these on my way to work this morning and they looked really cheerful against a grey sky.

Row of sunflowers

Sunflowers in Farnham

And that’s our garden in August. I’m hoping my cuttings will continue to thrive and I’ll have lots of new plants!

17 Comments

  1. Simply beautiful. I love seeing so many photos of bees this week, a really encouraging sign and am I going completely mad or are there far more bees about than last year?
    Very healthy looking herbs you have there and the hydrangea is just so pretty with the pink spots! Sunflowers always make me smile.

    Thanks ever so much for joining in and sharing x

    • I think there are definitely more than there were last year. If there’s a strong gust of wind lots of bees get blown out of the herbs and they fly back in again. Perhaps it because more people are planting with bees in mind? Thanks for hosting, I’ve discovered some great blogs.

    • Thank you! 🙂 Perhaps they are small but incredibly hot? The small ones I dried are VERY potent.

  2. What fabulous bee photos – love seeing our little fuzzy friends everywhere. Sounds like you’ve been seriously busy in your garden. Your herbs and chillies are all looking fabulous. It must be great seeing those strawberries plants – I can’t believe how large the roots are! Those sunflowers are enormous!! Perhaps I should move my little seedlings 🙂

    • I was shocked at the size of the roots too. They’re doing surprisingly well considering I neglected them for a while – lack of water and poor soil quality. Maybe I’ve been too kind until now 😉

    • Thanks Fi. It’s funny, I didn’t notice them growing until I saw all those brightly coloured heads this morning. Want to grow some next year.

  3. You make propagating seem so easy! I have never thought to dig up the strawberry runner when its roots become strong and replanting it somewhere else. I was wondering if I should start cutting them back because they are starting to take over my little kitchen garden.

    I found when propagating rosemary, putting several cuttings in the same pot (at least 3-5) helps them along – I think they like their friends. Not sure if that helps but it seems to be like magic for me.

    • Thanks for the advice Kathleen! My rosemary cuttings survived for about 2 weeks but didn’t root and then the bottom leaves ended up going black and dropping off. Then the whole cutting wilted. Not sure what I did wrong. This is my first year potting the strawberry runners, hopefully they give us lots of fruit next year 🙂

  4. I learnt a great one this year!

    I alway enjoy pinching out side shoots of my tomato plants and i thought this year i’ll try potting one from my favourite cherry tomato plant. I literally pinched it off and bung it in the nearest pot. It done really well!

    It’s no use now so sadly got sacrificed as it’s so late in the season but a lesson learnt for next spring when i start growing in my greenhouse!

    • Wow! Didn’t realise you could do that. I’ll definitely give it a go next year, thanks for the tip 🙂

  5. Fabulous pictures Gemma, you’re cuttings are doing fantastically well, that must be so satisfying. I’m loving the look of your chillies and those sunflowers are just amazing, what a cheery sight.

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