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Isolation Seed Sowing 2021

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  • Isolation Seed Sowing 2021

    I’m wondering whether anyone else has been driven by an unusually circumscribed life to sow already more than is probably sensible. I’m always itching to get going at this time of year but it’s usually kept a bit in check by going away in January. This year no barrier to getting out packets of old seed, doing germination tests and potting up anything with some life in it.

    So on the go so far:

    Aubergines Bonica F1, Pot Black F1, Moneymaker F1

    Onions Mill Creek Red (Unusual Seeds), Storage Onion Grex (Experimental Farm Network), Sturon, Red Baron, Keravel, Tropea Rossa Lunga, Toughball, Walla Walla, Globo

    ‘Shallot’ Zebrune

    Potato Onion Green Mountain F2 F3 MX

    Calabrese De Cicco, Calinaro, Green Magic F1, KabukiF1

    Cauliflower Andes, Orkney, Clapton, Raleigh, Sapporo, (all F1s)

    Lettuce Larini, Bijou, Rouge Grenoble, Maravilla di Verana Castana, Navara

    Broad bean Stereo, Karmazyn, Black Russian outcross, Blue Anton, Syrian Small, Frog Island Nation, Crimson Flowered

    Peas Meteor, Douce Provence, Panthers, Frühe Heinrich, Oregon Sugar Pod

    Plus one or two kales and cabbages and a potato bag of Swift

    Much juggling to be done as these grow and develop. Has anyone else filled this long drawn out isolation January with rather precipitate seed sowing?
    Last edited by Jang; 30-01-2021, 06:27.

  • #2
    None sown as yet. And no compost sold in essential food only shops during lockdown. This may be different in town, but going to town is not an essential journey. However, after over a month the Christmas eve snow has melted yesterday and revealed nice mole hills, so we are good to go (I hope). Peppers and onions first. But I am doing a thorough stock check of all seeds in the freezer. I bought seeds that may be impossible to get after Brexit and off to the freezer they went. So a general inventory and labelling of all these mixed seeds mystery jars is definitely in order.

    I did sow for cold stratification stones from various plums we had in the garden and also from the oleagnus Autumn Olives. Hoping for germination. Stone fruit does come relatively close to the original, with any luck we will get seedling Cambridge Gage, seedling Victoria and seedling Mirabelle. Fingers crossed.

    And an inventory of seed boxes. Have found a sheet of kitchen towel with seeds of a tomato 'Sacher' stuck to it, which is apparently chocolate brown from 2012 in the bottom of the tomato box. Not in my database, no original packet in the seed box. And a variety I do not recall ever growing before. No memory how this came into my box of tomato treasures and stayed hidden for so long. I must have cadged a few fermented seeds from somebody (my handwriting). Will there be germination? It is very likely for 9 year old seed but we will see. However it is a commercially available variety , so at least I could find out what it should look like.

    I am awed by your early sowings and wish them all very well, Jang.
    Last edited by Galina; 30-01-2021, 07:38.


    • #3
      Here garden centres are deemed essential this time round. Our local one is operating a Click and Collect service for things like compost - which is useful. But good luck with your mole hill soil. I see my moles as something of a curse, but at times like these ....

      And hope you succeed in producing a fruit tree forest! I've tried germinating Oleagnus twice but without success. It will be interesting to see how your plums and cherry from stones progress.

      The Sacher tomato seeds sound interesting too. It would be great if they germinate - a mystery gift. Do let us know.

      I see my early sowings as a bit of a folly but not too much lost if many of them go belly up!


      • #4
        Jang you're a machine!

        A lot of database and allotment planning this past month. But in terms of actual physical maintenance and garden jobs my work ethic is indistinguishable to that of a hibernating toad.
        I've only sown broad beans and peas, and planted into pots a few shallots & potato onion sets. I wanted to plant allium seed earlier but in my shaded situation it tends yield unhappy little wisps. So I have to balance earliness and light - hopefully an early Feb sowing will give them time to thrive. Think I'll start peppers this week too.

        Fingers crossed for your plum seedlings Galina! Am I correct in my understanding that stone fruit seeds have to be kept moist to remain viable? I obtained some bullace stones but they arrived dry, wondering if they're worth stratifying.

        I'm also at a loss with these oysterleaf seeds.. are they meant to look like little empty husks?


        • Galina
          Galina commented
          Editing a comment
          Dry is fine afaik (the proof will soon be in my hands if any germinate). Pips from citrus definitely need to stay damp. Citrus pips need to be sent in damp tissue or sown straight from a fruit without drying.

        • Jang
          Jang commented
          Editing a comment
          What a good idea to plant potato onion sets in pots. Thanks for that nudge.

          I have a rather basic light setup which helps with the itchy sowing drive at this time of year. It’s just two tiers of fluorescent tubes and one LED tube crudely attached to a cheap little polythene greenhouse frame. It gets carted into a spare room every January and out again each April or May.

          It half does the job of providing light but even so lots of juggling needed.