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  • Hello!

    I've one and a half half-plots (hope that's not too confusing!) on an allotment site in South London and am recently hooked on seed saving - mostly thanks to RealSeeds and Jayb. I've recently become an HSL Seed Guardian and am interested in learning a lot more about seed saving and plant propagation.

    My best non-seed success so far this year has been growing a fig tree from a discarded pruning I found - so far it has 4 healthy mini-branches and is loving life in my greenhouse.

  • #2
    Hi Sparrow, welcome! Isn't seed saving fun?


    • #3
      Nice to see you here, Sparrow. What are your seed saving plans for this year? Looking forward to reading about your two plots, which if I got the maths right, equal 3/4 of a plot


      • #4
        ooh there's a bit of a list. I am trying to save small amounts of a lot of things and some of the plants are very small this year because of the cold start. So (deep breath) lipstick peppers and calico, royal black, habanero, padron, serrano, orange manzano chillies, rosa bianca aubergines, kent blue peas, salsify, chioggia beetroot, shishigatani & geraumon martinique squashes, some of the gorgeous beans from the A4A parcel and beans and chillies for the Heritage Seed Library. Plus some tomatoes.

        Nothing really difficult, though I am struggling with isolating the beetroot from all the ruddy flowering chard on our site. The flowers aren't quite out yet, so I will need to make a fleece baggie on the weekend.

        If I get my act together I'll be trying more fruit from cuttings and having a go at grafting later in the year - then again best laid plans often go awry...


        • #5
          Yes and the peppers too. Although they are much smaller than beetroot plants and easier to isolate. Wish you good luck with Rosa Bianca, which I tried 3 times and then gave up with. But where you are the average temperature should be several degrees warmer, so fingers crossed. Lipstick is lovely, one of my favourites.

          Is that bud grafting? Never done that. Currants etc grow very well from cuttings. Just prune after harvest and push the pruned sticks in the ground. Most will take. When we moved I took 12 Josta berry cuttings because I couldn't dig the bush up and I ended up with 12 new Jostas, Every one took (we moved in December, perhaps not the right time for cuttings, but it did not seem to matter). Good luck with your endeavours, Sparrow. Looking forward to reading how it all goes.

          I know all about best laid plans ........................ still we enjoy what does work and don't dwell on the inevitable disasters.


          • #6
            My baby Christmas Pippin needs pruning and my brother has moved to a new house with no budget left for garden plants. It seems like a perfect opportunity to play with rootstock... I'm planning on more redcurrants, red gooseberries and trying for a couple more figs as well as quince - RHS website says Vranja doesn't need to go on rootstock and that's the one I have.

            12 new Jostas sounds like an awful lot of Jostas!


            • #7
              Hello and Welcome, sounds like you have taken on a load for seed saving

              I keep meaning to have a go at grafting fruit, but never quite seem to get around to it. I potted up a couple of rooted rootstock shoots from a dwarf peach, but haven't done anything with them yet, What time of year is best?

              What are you growing as a Guardian for HSL?


              • #8
                A lot of that saving list is aiming for small numbers of fruits for my own seed war chest, not huge quantities for sharing out so it should be ok. Plus squashes are a doddle when they get going. There's a fruit grafting workshop near Brighton in July/August which I might go to. I'm guessing towards the end of dormancy is best, but at the moment I don't know, am just starting to read up on it and get my order for M27 rootstock put in. My success with one (of 9!) fig twigs may have gone to my head...

                I have Black Coco DFB and Trifetti chillies for HSL - I joined v late so I might not get the chillies to fruiting this year. So I'll be overwintering and on aphid patrol. Heigh-ho.


                • #9
                  That workshop sounds great, I wonder if anyone is doing similar around here.
                  Lol, I've tried with figs before, not as easy as it sounds.

                  Good luck with the chilies, Trifetti look gorgeous, I love the colour combination, sounds a hottie too. I'm growing Fish again this year, I think variegated foliage is very pretty, love it on tomato plants too.
                  I overwintered a Lantern chilli (originally from Real Seeds) all went well until I forgot to keep checking in March- boom aphid overload overnight


                  • #10
                    I WISH I could grow Fish chillies. I have sowed about 20 seeds and naddah!!


                    • #11
                      What a shame, I had my seeds from, I think they have got some really nice things. Germination was great, I'll do my best to save some seeds this year, if all goes to plan I'm sure I'll have some spare if you would like some.


                      • #12
                        I'd love some. I got mine from a uk seed company that I probably won't use again. The calico and royal black chillies have lovely foliage - leaves that are variegated with black/purple, green and white. Really striking. I am saving seed from these when they get a move on and produce flowers so could swap with you if you wanted any.

                        I did a short video of the new plot for a friend elsewhere on t'internet. I've got about half of my section dug over and nearly all planted up. I am thinking of planting through the thick caardboard boxes I have for speedy results this year.


                        • #13
                          They sound lovely, a swap later on sounds good too
                          Just had a google they look gorgeous!

                          Love the video, your greenhouse is fab, it looks very smart and well cared for. You've loads growing, those beds look good. What are you planing on planting through the cardboard? I've had good results with squash and beans.
                          Yikes what happens about asbestos, is it ok to have it exposed?


                          • #14
                            Wow, everything's so tidy! Even the "messy" bit is much neater than my garden (it really needs a lot of work but I can only do things slowly).

                            Also I adore seeing other people's gardens, so thanks for showing us.


                            • #15
                              Thanks for the very kind comments. I am slow too and do feel a lot behind in the digging. I have 15 raspberry canes languishing in a tub on my balcony which I thought would be in the ground by now...I'm going to plant squashes through the card, just to give them a chance to actually grow. Silverleaf, it really is a mess but I will get there with it.

                              This is my other plot.

                              The munty frame is planted up with lazy housewife and cara la virgen de la banera leon beans, with the sad tomatilloes from the other clip underneath.
                              The bottom bed with gooseberries, strawberries and the celeriac and onions is riddled with horsetail, so this will be bare-rooted and moved up to where the munty frame is in the winter so I can tackle it properly.