Sunday, 23 February 2014

Day 23 - Feeling the Frugal Need for Seed - Sweet Peppers and Garlic

Whether you prefer Sewing or Sowing, they're both Frugal.


Remember these from earlier this month?

They are the seeds from the middle of the sweet peppers that I saved. They have been drying out on paper towel in their plastic tub for the past couple of weeks but seeing as I'm more in a sowing mood than a sewing mood, I decided to get them started and find out if any of them will grow. I can see no reason why they shouldn't, as similar experiments in the past have worked. Grand daughter's apple pips and peach stone from 2007(ish) are still growing, albeit it very, very slowly, out in the garden.

Empty plastic food containers

Planters - recycled food containers and trays make great planters and plant pot holders or drip trays! If there are no holes in the base of your planter, sit it on a folded tea towel or similar and pierce drainage holes using a sharp knife, awl, skewer or screw driver. Do not put holes in the tray, this is for catching drips or surplus water.

Compost and seeds

Half fill your tub with fine soil or compost and water it before sprinkling your seeds over the top. Don't worry if it looks too many, we aren't going to keep them all if they grow, only the strongest and healthiest. Cover these with a fine layer of compost or, if you have any available, vermiculite.

Homemade mini-propagator

Close the lid of your tub or else, as I have done, sit another similar tub over the top to allow growing space, making sure there are air vents - these types of tubs normally have air holes already in them - and hey presto! You now have a tiny windowsill propagator that will help protect your seeds and hopefully encourage them to grow. Don't forget to label your seeds - I am using a little piece of card with seed type written on one side and the date they were sown on the other.

All we need to do now is keep an eye on the tub to ensure the contents don't dry out and wait patiently to find out if our seeds will germinate.

Good luck! You can try seeds from any you happen to save - sweet pepper, chilli pepper, tomato or even start off peas and beans. I have had very successful pea crops from plants grown from the dried peas taken from my broth mix. :)

Today I finally got around to planting the rest of my garlic. Better late than never, I say. This has all been planted from kitchen/cooking garlic bulbs. Here's the first lot that I planted before Christmas. I need some nice dry weather now to get out there and properly weed the bed. The wire mesh is to prevent the cat from using the raised bed as a giant litter tray!

My raised garlic bed

Today's cloves have been planted in a tub on the patio. These are the last of the kitchen garlic that I started off in a sealed polythene bag in the fridge:

Garlic cloves being sprouted in polythene bag in the fridge

These have been in the fridge for the past couple of months, so I'm hoping they'll be OK being transferred outside this late on in the winter. Like rhubarb seeds, they like a good dose of frost to get them going. With luck, I'll get sufficient from my frugal crop to avoid the need to buy any more after this year. Wouldn't that be great?

NYK, Frugaldom

7 comments:

  1. Good luck with the gardening - I got some lovely garlic out of a bulb from the supermarket when I had an allotment!

    Thank you very much for your answer to my question about the chickpeas, I'm going to give those a go.

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    1. You are welcome :) Hope you enjoy your chick peas.

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  2. To see if the seed is viable dampen a couple of paper towels put the seed on them an roll them up and keep moist; after a week unroll the towel and see if they have sprouted; no need to plant them in medium as it is a bit too soon to start peppers and tomatoes........wait until the first week in April to do that.

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  3. at this point wish I could see the gardens, still covered in that rotten white stuff!!!

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  4. I saved my pepper seeds all last year I have sown them and am now potting them on. They will go in the greenhouse so fingers crossed they will fruit. Peppers are perenials so I am told that if you cut them down in the I saved my pepper seeds all last year I have sown them and am now potting them on. They will go in the greenhouse so fingers crossed they will fruit. Peppers are perenials so I am told that if you cut them down in the alturm and keep them going somewhere warm you could have a head start next year. My Apricot stones and Walnuts have also germinated hopefully they will make nice trees and keep them going somewhere warm you could have a head start next year. My Apricot stones and Walnuts have also germinated hopefully they will make nice trees

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    Replies
    1. This is true - I had my 'Big Jim' pepper plant for several years and hope to manage to keep some alive now we have a little bit of heat in the house. That's my trouble - insufficient heat to keep anything going and having had no place t safely over-winter anything other than the polythene greenhouse, my last year's peppers died. All that has survived this winter is the lemon and orange bushes plus the few little cuttings I took from succulents. It's still freezing here but I'm hoping the seeds will eventually get enough heat through their tin cans while sitting on a shelf in the living room.

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