A few days ago I took delivery of a new Blueberry plant (type unknown), which was a special offer from the BBC Good Food magazine - "free, just pay £3.95 P and P" or whatever. It's not very big (that's a 7-inch pot I've put it in), but it looks healthy and strong.
Since the plant arrived in a very small pot, inside a cardboard box, I was keen to get it potted-up and out into the open air as soon as possible. After potting it up and watering it, I introduced it to its new colleagues - the Seniors, who are already four or five years old.
As you can see in this photo, I have my Blueberries growing in big pots ranged close against the wall of our house. This is for two reasons: first, it is warmer (the house-bricks work like a massive storage heater, retaining warmth during the day and releasing it slowly overnight); and second, it keeps them more out of the way of the pesky Blackbirds (which only risk coming close to the house when the lure of ripe berries is too strong to resist).
In the photo below you can see the new plant (red arrow) taking its place in the line-up, which includes all four of my mature Blueberry plants.
Just so that the new plant understands what is required of it, I think maybe I should show it this picture from last year...
Blueberries are a good thing to grow. They require only minimal maintenance, take up very little space and usually produce a worthwhile crop of fruit as well as exquisitely beautiful foliage in the Autumn. A point to note though is that they need an acid soil. For this reason it is often best to grow them in pots filled with ericaceous (or "lime-free") compost, which is easily obtained from a Garden Centre. For the same reason, watering the plants with rainwater as opposed to tapwater (which may have added minerals in it) is advised.
While we're on the subject of newcomers, take a look at this.
Some weeks ago I sowed a few pots with the chilli seeds I brought back from Turkey last year. Only two germinated, and they took ages (much longer than my other types of chilli). This is what they look like now:
The others I gave up as failures and sowed some more seeds in the same pots - several seeds in each in fact, because I was expecting a poor germination rate again. Eventually one or two came up (which I assumed to be from the second sowing), but now all of a sudden each of the little pots has got four or five seedlings in it. So these new ones must be from the second sowing, and the slightly bigger ones must therefore be from the first sowing, germinating now after about 7 weeks!
|Chilli seedling "hatching"|
After such a slow start I'm thinking my "Turkey" chillis are probably going to be very disappointed with our UK Summer. Their parents were probably used to having temperatures in the high 40s (C that is, not F). Maybe I will never get them to bear fruit - but it will be fun trying!