Tag: worms

Work in Progress

We’ve had some sunshine and the temperature has gone up by about 10°C! I’ve done some more work on the bed in the front garden that I wrote about in my last post. I needed some muscle to help remove the trunk of the ceanothus so that had to wait until the weekend. It was quite interesting to see the root ball – there was some very thick root coiled round suggesting that it had been pot grown for a long time before being planted in the ground. Outside of that the root system was not very extensive at all, I’m amazed it had survived as long as it had.

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My new planting looks rather sparse and I’ve had to put stones in the gaps to try to keep the cats off. Some columbines (Aquilegia) have self-seeded in this bed, I quite like them so have left them, but have yanked out all the periwinkle. I’m hoping that I will be able to add to the planting from my RHS seeds. I have sown most of my seeds now, just two of the grasses and the devil’s bit scabious to go. The Korean mint (Agastache rugosa) and snapdragons (Antirrhinum majus) have germinated but no signs of life from any of the others yet.

I gave some big dollops of worm poo to some lucky plants: the two roses in the front, the philadelphus, and the wisteria.

I have finally started hardening off my sweet peas this week. I’m determined to make a better effort with them this year after last year not providing them with adequate support. I have saved some long branches from pruning the buddleja which I will give them to scramble up.

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Chocolate fruit and worm poo

My chocolate vine (Akebia quinata) has produced a lot of large fruit this year. Just this week they have changed from pale green to purple, swelled and burst open.

Today I spent some time playing with my worms and harvesting some worm poo. I got my wormery last autumn and it’s taken a while to get the hang of it so this was my first collection of finished compost. I carefully separated out the worms from the compost so as not to lose any – the worms are happily multiplying, lots of tiny baby worms and eggs.

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The compost looks very rich so I will be mixing it with something else for potting, or perhaps sprinkle it sparingly on my flower beds. There were quite a lot of undigested eggshells but that was the only thing still recognisable. I had crushed the eggshells a little in my hands when putting them in but in future I will make more effort to smash them up. In the early days I think I put in too much food waste, too fast. I also made the mistake of putting in large, tough things such as cabbage stalks.

At the bottom of the wormery is a sump where liquid collects and a tap for draining it, then it can be used as liquid plant food. The main reason I had to sort out the worms today was that the tap had got bunged up and it wasn’t draining properly. Quite a lot of compost had fallen through into the sump and so it was a thick mud that needed clearing out.