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13 November 2014

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Colin Evans

You are in: Berkshire > Local radio > Colin Evans > Merry Christmas and happy new potatoes!

Poinsettia

Poinsettia

Merry Christmas and happy new potatoes!

Christmas is coming, and Colin is itching to get out in the garden and start planting his spuds. Also find out which is the perfect poinsettia for your Christmas decorations.

I do love the thought that after Christmas the New Year will be just around the corner and a chance to make plans for the garden next year.

I have decided that since my potatoes in tubs were so successful this year, I will get in the early potatoes as soon as I can.

Potato

Potatoes

Experiment

In fact I am trying an experiment.

I will get some seed potatoes when I can source them and plant them into the existing potatoes still with the compost left over from the last crop.

The seed potatoes will either survive or not and if they do then I should be harvesting a crop before next spring.

This may be a bit of a chance but the tubs are down the side of my house where it is sheltered and protected by the heat which builds up on the wall.

If this works then I reckon I can have home grown potatoes all year round.

I will let you know how I get on, wish me luck.

Colin's plant of the week

Already I am getting questions about poinsettia euphorbia pulcherrima which is known all over the world as the flower of Christmas.

The red leaves on the most common variety are a glorious sight on the dark days of winter.

Red poinsettia

Red poinsettia

Over the last few years the plant breeders have become very clever and have developed new varieties.

The marbled creams, whites and pinks can be found at the garden centres now and all during December.

If you favour the red variety, then purchase the English grown types. You will spot them because they are smaller, greener, redder and more sturdy than those imported from Holland and Belgium.

The English types are not forced and are grown in lower temperatures than the imported ones so will be hardier from the start and will last longer. Once you get the plant home give it a light and airy spot and do not over water, also keep as far away from any hot places in the room and your plant will last well into the new year.

Grassy lawn

Start preparing your lawn for spring

TOPICAL TIPS:

1:   Don't wait for hard frosts before bringing pelagoniums and geraniums into a frost free shed or garage with a window to let in plenty of light, or better still, the conservatory is a good bet as this will protect the plants and allow plenty of winter light in.

2:   Although the lawn maybe very wet it's still a good time to aerate the grass by making holes in the surface with a garden fork. This will
ensure the water drains away and will also allow vital air to the root system.

3:   The ground covering spring bulbs should be given a top dressing of sulphate of potash to feed the developing flower buds. Also make sure the ground does not dry out and make sure a layer of compost is piled over the area to keep the bulbs frost free and the moisture in.

Happy Gardening.

last updated: 26/11/2008 at 12:13
created: 21/11/2008

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