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Make Garden Cook Subscription Box - May - What's in the box?.......

Welcome to WithlovefromtheUK monthly subscription box blog.

Every month I will use and discuss the items in your box. Hopefully I will have successes but I will also post my failures. You're welcome to join in and comment, perhaps you can advise me where I went wrong! Here goes..............

Just a quick update on my previous post

I have had success in the sowing of the sunflower seeds, these are about four inches tall now, and thankfully they have escaped the snails and slugs, possible because they are near the pond where the newts live.

I have planted out my pumpkin plant in a protected area where it gets full sun mid morning onwards. It is quite early to plant out but it has been so mild here in Kent and I thought I would chance it. I just hope that we don't get any late frosts.

The Aquilegia seeds did not produce anything in the seed pots so I have sprinkled the rest of the seeds straight onto the soil where I want them to grow. Aquilegias are perennial plants and they self sow successfully ever year so hopefully this will be a more natural environment for them to grow.

I have pricked out the Brussel Sprouts into bigger pots but unfortunately I have had no luck with the Red Hot Poker.

The peas are growing really well and I have now put the supports in for them to climb up.

The nasturtiums have been planted up in the window box and pots as well as in the vegetable garden. Hopefully they will keep the blackfly off my broad beans which are flowering at the moment.

It's getting busier in the garden and if there is anything to be thankful for in these strange times, I have plenty of time to do whatever I want, plus try out new hobbies and skills.

This month I shall be planting out the antirrhinums which I sowed back in February. They have not grown too well and I have put this down to pricking them out too early which put back their growth. There should be a few successes in the batch as long as the snails and slugs don't get them, as they tend to devour the weak and tender plants.

The dahlia tubers which have been sprouting in the greenhouse have been put outside to harden off. In preparation to planting these, along with the dahlias which I have grown from seed, I decided to pull up the daffodil and tulip bulbs. I have left the stalks and leaves on the bulbs and stacked them in a sheltered position to let them die down naturally. I might regret doing this if the bulbs do not flower next year, but they were taking up so much of the border where I want to replant with some of my own plants. The garden is quite wild in its layout, something I have not been used to, but strangely it is quite beautiful in it's disordered way. I pick my way through the masses of growth to take out the weeds I have identified. It helps me absorb the layout, which will help in the future planning of what to grow.

My sister in law introduced some tadpoles to the pond today as I hadn't seen any frogspawn in it. I wondered if it had been eaten by the newts. The tadpoles might not survive as the newts could eat them too. They already have their back legs so they might be lucky enough, and they are pretty fast swimmers. Newts and frogs will hopefully eat the snails and slugs which thrive in the garden, so I am happy to have them.

It's not been all gardening this last month. I decided to use my watercolour pencils, a present I was given last year. I'm not much of an artist but I find it relaxing to draw and rewarding, especially when I posted to my instagram account @makegardencook and someone recognised where it was! I had not added the water at this stage and it looks more like a watercolour painting now that I have.

We enjoyed celebrating VE Day 75th Anniversary in the front garden with a cream tea, along with the neighbours. What a beautiful sunny warm day it was, with just the right amount of wind to fly the flag. We were also lucky to have entertainment from one of our neighbours playing his ukulele and singing all the traditional songs, much to the amusement of passers by on their daily walk! I wonder if we would have celebrated as a community had we not been confined to our homes, I somehow think not.

So, what's in the box this month................

Dwarf Bean Mascotte

Antirrhinum Magic Carpet Mix

Early Purple Sprouting

Dibbers (2)

English Rose and White Geranium Bath Salts

Popcorn Shed Sweet and Salty

Coir discs

Wooden labels

Information Sheet and Calendar

I love beans of any kind and I find that growing French Beans so easy and each plant produce in abundance. Once you have tasted freshly picked beans (as with any vegetable or fruit) you will find that supermarket produce will never be viewed in the same way. I will grow them in a gorilla bucket this year. Any surplus beans will either be given to neighbours and family and I will freeze some for later. They freeze really well and it is lovely to be able to recapture the taste again in the winter months.

I have not had much success at growing Early Sprouting Broccoli before, therefore I sow these seed with trepidation. Who knows this might be the year! Early Sprouting is a great vegetable to have in late winter. early spring and I find that it needs little cooking when picked for the pot as the stalks are not tough.

The Antirrhinums in this month's box will provide colour in the garden later in the season. I will sow these seeds into a seed tray and if successful I will plant out in July/August. I will not be too hasty to prick them out too early this time!

I just love the handy dibbers which have been included. For years I have used the end of pens, pencils and knives to prick out and make holes in the soil for seeds but having the right tool to do this just makes it easier.

It is such a luxury in these days, when most people take a quick shower, to relax in a bath infused with beautiful scented salts which leaves your skin feeling soft. And it's not as if many of us don't have the time at the moment to spend in a long hot bath. Lovely!

The small sized popcorn (not the bag, which is huge!) made by Popcorn Shed is a nice treat, especially when watching your favourite film. You can pretend you're at the cinema, whilst they are closed.

Also included in this box are some coir discs which are an ecological way to start your seeds, just soak in warm water and sow your seeds and pop in the ground when the seedlings are large enough. Also wooden plant markers are included for your use.

What to do in the garden this month.........

  1. Plant out summer bedding towards the end of this month in warmer parts of the country.

  2. Prune spring-flowering shrubs after they have flowered.

  3. Lift and divide overcrowded clumps of daffodils and other spring-flowering bulbs.

  4. Keep on top of weeding- weeds will compete for precious water, light and nutrients

Happy Gardening!

MakeGardenCook @ withlovefromtheUK

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