Posts Tagged ‘container gardening’

Heirloom Tomato seeds

September 11, 2016

We have many heirloom seed varieties in stock and over 190 tomato varieties to choose from, heirloom, plum, beefsteak, currant and tomato seeds for hanging basket varieties available from Nicky’s Tomato Seeds.

Tomato seeds Black pear
Unusual Heirloom miniature pear shaped tomato, producing an abundance of mahogany brown to black fruits approximately 170 gram with green shoulders, full of flavour with a rich sweet taste. Ideal for salads or for a tomato sauce. Black Russian tomato of Siberian origin (similar to Japanese Black Trifele). Easy to grow tomato seeds. Indeterminate 80 days
Tomato Black Pear 10 seeds

Tomato seeds Abraham Lincoln
The original strain of Heirloom tomato Abraham Lincoln. Dark red extra large meaty fruits up to 500g. Crack resistant variety. Excellent flavour for sauces, tomato ketchup, slicing in salads and sandwiches. 87 days Indeterminate.

Tomato seeds Druzba
Mini Beefsteak heirloom variety originating from Bulgaria. Superb flavoured pure red tomato up to 10cm across that is excellent in sandwiches and salads. Indeterminate (cordon) 80 days. Grow your own tomato plants from seeds.

New Flower varieties to grow from seeds

June 8, 2015

New flower seeds for the home gardener and grower from Nicky’s Flower Seeds A to C.

Ageratum White Champion seeds

15-20cm
Ageratum houstonianum mexicanum
Half hardy annual.
An attractive F1 white ageratum which is uniform a free flowering. Ideal for borders, mixed bedding, pot plants or in containers. Pelleted Seed


Begonia Illumination Lemon

Trailing begonia for hanging baskets & window boxes, hybrid. Gives a canopy of blooms on elegant cascading stems, blooms are large & double. Lemon coloured 5cm double flowers. We supply Pelleted seeds for ease of sowing.


 

Begonia. Majestic Sunburst 20 pellets
Begonia Majestic Sunburst
B.tuberhybrida
Very large 14-20cm double flowers with ruffled edges produced on strong vigorous plants that produce an abundance of colour all summer long. Ideal for borders, containers or patio pots.
Pelleted Seeds for ease of sowing.


Begonia. Starshine Mixed 10 Pelleted sds
Begonia Starshine Mixed
B.boliviensis x hybrida
A mix of Orange, Red, Rose and white. Excellent hanging basket plant with vigorous growth and well branched plants. Masses of flowers on strong arching stems make these plants a must for any hanging basket or patio container.
Pelleted seeds for ease of sowing.


Begonia. Supercascade Vanilla Cream 25 pellets
Begonia. Supercascade Vanilla Cream

Tuberous rooted F1 variety. Very floriferous cascading plants with double and semi double flowers of 6-8cm. Ideal for hanging baskets or containers. Pelleted seed.


Campanula. Rapido Blue 50 pellets Campanula. Rapido White 50 Pellets
Campanula Rapido Blue  and  Campanula Rapido White

A very early free flowering hardy hybrid perennial producing compact mounded plants that are covered in flowers from July to September. Ideal rockery plant or over a low wall. Full sun or partial shade. Pelleted seeds. Height 13-18cm with a spread of 13-20cm


Celosia. First Flame Mixed 50 seeds
Celosia First Flame Mixed
Excellent highly coloured summer flowers in a mixture of scarlet orange red and yellows, First Flame is earlier by 2 weeks than other similar varieties. Pot up in the border or containers. C. plumose


Coleus. Kong Lime Sprite 10 pellets
Coleus Kong Lime Sprite
Solenostemon scutellarioides
An extremely large leaf variety with unique leaf patterns. Plants are well branched and will make a bold statement in any border or container. Also ideal as an indoor house plant. Pelleted seeds.


Coleus. Kong Rose Lime Magic 10 pellets
Coleus Kong Rose Lime Magic
Solenostemon scutellarioides
A unique variety as the colour changes with the seasons. Rose colour in leaves will dissolve exposing green margins with a cream centre as the season progresses. Makes a bold statement in any container. Pelleted seeds.


Cosmos. Purity 100 seeds

Cosmos Purity
A popular annual flower for the cottage garden, wildlife garden or for the cut flower garden. Pure white flowers up to 10cm in diameter. Flowers from summer through to autumn. Sow from March to May. C bipinnatus

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Cosmos Cupcakes Mixed

Free flowering 3 colour blend of cupcake shaped flowers, in single and semi double blooms, each petal is fused to the next one to make a single cupcake flower, bushy, tall plants ideal in borders, large containers, wildlife and cut flower garden. Flowers from summer through to autumn. Sow from March to May. Cosmos Cupcakes C bipinnatus

 

Baby Veg from seeds

March 15, 2013

Cucamelon, Melothria Scabra, Mexican Sour Gherkin

Baby vegetable seeds can be grown in a variety of different ways. You don’t
have to buy seeds which are specifically developed to give baby vegetables – you can also
harvest early or sow the seed thickly of some varieties, so they don’t have much chance to
develop. Some people like to harvest crops such as carrots and leeks when they
are small as a matter of course – they tend to be sweeter then as the sugars
have not converted to starch and they are also tenderer. If you take
precautions against attracting carrot fly – you can ask a dozen gardeners how
to prevent this pest and their replies will vary between putting ground coffee
on the ground, growing marigolds, onions and leeks nearby or using fleece –
then you can use two methods at once. You can sow thickly, then use the early
thinnings as baby veg and grow the rest on to maturity, harvesting as you go to
make the best of their sweetness.

Cucumber Iznic baby cucumber

Some plants are best grown from deliberately bred dwarf stock, such as
aubergines – Nicky’s Nursery stocks Hansel, an F1 hybrid with purple fruit that
can be harvested as small as two inches long. This is something to remember –
small is not necessarily ‘baby’; it might mean unripe and therefore not good to
eat. Check the packaging if you intend to eat something when it is not mature;
not all plants take kindly to being harvested young and you could end up with
an inedible crop.

Aubergine Hansel

Baby Veg Aubergine Hansel harvest from 2 inches to 10 inches

Baby vegetables not only taste good, they look good too and if you are
on a diet and tending to ‘eat with your eyes’ the plate appeal is very
important. As well as being small, some of the baby vegetables come in weird
and wonderful colours, such as the cauliflower strain ‘Sunset’. As its name
suggests, it comes in a glowing orange shade, which is deepest at ‘baby’ size,
but does still linger even if allowed to grow to full maturity. If you like
runner beans but prefer smaller veg, then Minnow would be ideal. They are the
size of a stringless French bean but with all the taste of a runner.

Cauliflower Sunset seeds

Baby or Mini veg Cauliflower Sunset

Tomatoes are the undisputed rulers of the baby vegetable patch. Many of
the cherry tomatoes are less than an inch across but the baby of even this tiny
strain is the tomato sweet pea currant, which has masses of fruits of less than
a fifth that size. Perfect in salads or to encourage children to eat more
vegetables, tiny tomatoes are a fun way to the five a day. For a perfect salad,
try Iceberg Warpath, a baby lettuce with the crisp leaves of a classic iceberg
but none of the bulk. Baby vegetables need to be sown in succession, to make
sure of a season-long supply of the little beauties.

Grow your own Tomatoes from Seed

March 12, 2013

Tomatoes picked straight from the plant and eaten within minutes are one
of the most amazing pleasures of growing your own – nothing comes even close to
the smell, texture and taste of a fresh tomato. When you grow your own
tomatoes from seed, there are lots of things to consider and if you are new to it, it is
well worth looking in to all the different kinds available but be warned –
there are hundreds to choose from.

Baby Tomatoes Goldrush Currant

The first consideration is how much room you have. If you have a
spacious greenhouse which you won’t want for any other growing for the whole
season, then really you can have practically any variety. For tomatoes
throughout the season, choose different varieties so that you don’t end up with
an enormous glut all at once. Also, it is a good idea to choose a few different
sizes – beefsteak tomatoes for Mediterranean salads and sandwiches (try Black
Brandywine
, a heritage dark variety which looks spectacular and tastes
wonderful); plum tomatoes for cooking; cherry style tomatoes which are ideal
for children’s snacks and finally the classic round tomatoes for salads and
general use – although it is great fun to vary it with a few unusual ones
available from Nicky’s Nursery such as egg yolk, a yellow variety the size and
colour of, yes, you’ve guessed it, an egg yolk! The packet sizes from Nicky’s
Nursery are very sensible, with 10-30 seeds depending on variety, so you won’t
be boring the neighbours with trays of unwanted tomato plants.

Tomato Black Cherry

Sweet & Juicy Tomato Black Cherry

The other thing to check before buying is whether your tomato plants
need a greenhouse or will grow outdoors. If you are new to growing tomatoes
from seed you may have come across the terms ‘determinate’ and ‘indeterminate’
and wondered what it means. It is very simple really and you will need to
consider how you will be using the fruits before you choose which you grow.
Determinate tomato plants grow not very high, usually around four feet and are
often also called ‘bush’ tomatoes. They grow and set fruit until the truss
(group of tomatoes) on the top of the plant sets, then all the fruit ripens at
once – usually over around two weeks – and then the plant dies. Indeterminate
tomatoes keep on growing and can reach quite high if you don’t pinch out the
terminal buds. The fruit sets and ripens as the plant grows and so you will keep
on getting fruit for a whole season. Most of the more unusual or heritage
strains are indeterminate and if you only intend to grow a few plants, they are
the best to choose. You can lengthen the season with determinate strains by
sowing the tomato seeds in batches, but you won’t be able to lengthen the season by
much.

Summer tastes are really encapsulated in the taste, tang, feel and smell
of a fresh tomato straight off the bush or vine and growing them from seed
could hardly be simpler, so if you only grow one vegetable plant this year,
make it a tomato.

Vegetable Container Gardening

March 11, 2013

There is absolutely no argument that home grown vegetables taste better than anything you can buy in the shops, and that includes organic produce and that bought at farmers’ markets and farm shops. It isn’t just about freshness; there is the taste of satisfaction that you get when you have grown something yourself, especially if you have raised it from seed.

Swiss Chard Container

Swiss Chard Container

You don’t have to be a very experienced gardener to grow vegetables from seed and you certainly don’t need an enormous plot. Lots of people make the mistake of taking on an allotment and getting disheartened with the amount of work they have let themselves in for. If time is tight or you just want to treat yourself occasionally with something home grown, there is nothing wrong with trying vegetable container gardening, on the patio or even along the path, if space is really in short supply.

One of the top tips for anyone raising plants from seed is to read the packet carefully. All seeds in Nicky’s Nursery will give you all the information you need to help you achieve success. With vegetables in particular you can get details on when to sow and whether you can start seeds off indoors or sow them directly where they are to grow; when the vegetables will be ready to harvest; and, perhaps most importantly when trying out vegetable container gardening, how big they will grow. Although it is possible to grow runner beans in a container, supporting them can be tricky as the plants can get heavier than the pot. If you have access to some real terracotta pots of a decent size, that is a real help as they won’t tip over so quickly and they also don’t tend to make the roots as hot as plastic pots will.

You might feel that you don’t want to make too much of an outlay on your vegetable container gardening project, in case you don’t like it (although you will, that is almost a guarantee!) and in that case you can look around the house and garden for containers. One brilliant way to vegetable garden on the cheap is to use supermarket ‘lifetime’ carrier bags, with drainage holes punched in. Be careful to choose the ones which form a square bottom, for stability, but this way you not only have a container for a few pence, but you can also move lighter crops around by lifting by the handles. They are ideal for carrots (for a bit of fun try crème de lite pale yellow carrots or cosmic purple); beetroot, leeks, celery and a host of other vegetables where you might want to sow just a few at a time.

You will soon find you are hooked on vegetable container gardening and next year you can try all sorts of exciting things to perk up your plate – try chillies, herbs, and marrows or branch out into kohlrabi, chicory or the tiniest of baby new potatoes; all much nicer than from the shops and cheaper too.


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