Hartley Magazine

All the latest news, hints, tips and advice from our experts

May means sowing, growing and ‘hardening off’.

Now’s the time to sow outdoor cucumber like ‘Marketmore’, marrow, squashes, pumpkins (vertically on edge, not laid flat like a surf board) individually in 7.5cm pots plus French and Runner beans and Sweetcorn in gentle heat in peat substitute seed compost or sieved multipurpose compost in a propagator, ready for planting out once the danger […]

March means seed sowing and re-potting!

What a dreadfully wet winter we’re having. I hope that you aren’t suffering too much from the incessant rain from one of the wettest winter’s on record and your garden isn’t too waterlogged, either. Rather than letting the rainwater from the water butts on your greenhouse go to waste, water parts of your garden that […]

A diary of December duties

Now’s the time of year to buy Amaryllis, (Hippeastrum) ready for flowering for the festive season. Start them into growth in the greenhouse then bring them indoors to flower. Water sparingly at first; trickling a little tepid water around the bulb, and increasing the amount as growth appears. Once they are actively growing, keep them […]

Time to harvest and sow

Aubergines and tomatoes that have finished cropping, as some of mine have, can be composted, creating more space in the greenhouse border and between pots on the bench, admitting more sunlight and improving air circulation around the plants that remain. Early in the month, remove individual leaves around aubergines, peppers and cucumbers and continue feeding […]

Blossom end rot – problem solved.

Blossom End Rot, where the end of tomatoes becomes circular, black and flattened, occurs in peppers and aubergines, squashes and watermelons but is most often seen in tomatoes. It is caused by lack of calcium in the fruits. Plants in soil, growing bags and potting composts rarely lack a supply of calcium but what they […]