The Potting Bench Diaries – 20th April 2022

What I’m Doing This Week: The daffs are really on the turn now and I’ve been deadheading them as I potter around so that they don’t go to seed. Deadheading makes sure all the energy goes back into the bulb to make for better and stronger flowers again next year.

If you’ve not done any of yours then you just need to pop the dead head off the flower, just behind the bulbous seed head – simple. Then you need to leave as much foliage on as you can to allow the bulb to do its thing, once its all brown and crispy then its safe to remove the foliage! You can either do it with secateurs or by hand.

I continue to be blown away by the tulips and they’ve really come into their own now that the daffs are giving them some room to breath. The ideas for next year’s tulip displays are already whirling in my head and I think I’ll kick it up another notch with some colour combos that I haven’t tried before. There have been some really incredible efforts made by lots of you in IG this year so 2022 is going to be a tough year to beat.

The feeding cans are out in full force and all the tulips (and anything else in flower) is getting a twice weekly feed now. This is a bit of a myth buster but you don’t need anything fancy to feed them with, just tomato feed will do! Make sure to water the base of the plants and not over the foliage as the feed can ‘burn’ the leaves.

What I’m Sowing/Planting This Week: I’ve sown some Tithonia ‘Torch’ this week which should bring a bang of orange to some pots over summer. Tithonia really does deserve to be better known because its flowers are some of the best – they’re not dissimilar to a dahlia in a way and they flower right the way from July until about October. One worth trying if you aren’t already giving it a go.

Speaking of the dahlia like Tithonia…The Cafe Au Lait is showing some good growth and all the other dahlias are also showing signs too. Shan’t be long before these can go out in the ground – something I initially wasn’t excited for but now I really am!

I treated myself to yet another Salvia for the rockery from Sarah Raven this week. This one is a Cherry Lips, which actually already got, but I’d wanted another for a while and it was on sale. While I was there I also got 10 Salvia viridis ‘Blue Monday’ to sit in the middle of the rockery and for the tulip planter ones those go over.

The first of the Anemones are in flower now and as always I wish I’d grown more. They are just breathtaking and I couldn’t imagine our garden without them, perfect for cutting and bringing indoors too!

In other news…? We’re on to episode four of the podcast now and this week’s is all about science!

I sat down with forager and organic grower, Mitch Grows to talk all about the science of soil and how bacteria does its thing! There are a few moments in here that might blow your mind slightly…

The weeks are flying by at the moment and before you know it it’ll be summer!

Have a great week and I’ll be back soon

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