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Planting herbs

I am in the opposite corner of Scotland from Mike, and we get plenty of rain…my main rosemary bush is in the middle of a rockery which is centred round an old tree stump, and drainage good which probably helps. Nearly all winters it’s fine, but in 2010 it died after many days consecutive sub zero. We lost escallonia and bay that year too. Potatoes and Coke froze solid in our garage…


That’s a very good point about the roots.

It’s worth mentioning that the RHS did a trial of loads of rosemary varieties that finished last year. For the plants that were growing in the ground, the difference in hardiness was striking, though of course they were all being grown in similar soil/drainage etc. They was also a similar trial with all the varieties in pots, and by no means did all varieties withstand getting their roots frozen.

The RHS usually write up the results of their trials in “The Garden” so it will be interesting to see their recommendations when they get written up - assuming I haven’t missed it already!

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Not so much herbs but this weekend was allotment prep and seed planting party in our house!

my son’s school topic for after easter is “allotment”…so we planted seeds for pumpkin, sunflowers, leeks, courgette and sweet corn for him.

I planted some tomatoes (superset 100, Marmande, Alicante and money maker) as well as lettuce, kale and beetroot.

Have the cloches on warming the soil for a week, before I will plant carrots and parsnips out next weekend.

Need to finish the weeding before the onions go in …potoates chitting for a week too :slight_smile:


I have leeks and celeriac germinating here with seedlings coming through. Also a few tomatoes.

I don’t sow parsips, carrots, turnips, beetroot here until late April. Usually just too cool. Onions already in though, and shallot shoots now showing. First early potatoes went in last week, second earlies will go in next.


Well ahead of me !

shallots and garlic showing nicely - garlic went in over Christmas and shallots a few weeks back now

My garlic went in in November and is about a foot high now. Shallots in early Feb and survived the deluge of rain in Feb. Rhubarb is ready about two weeks earlier than usual.

wow - my garlic was about 2-3 inches but expect, with this good weather, for it to shoot up

We’ve had Rhubarb for a couple of weeks already…madness - first Rhubarb used to be at the start of the cricket season !

I put my garlic in last October The softneck is four or five inches up but the hardneck is only just beginning to appear.

Not often I find myself cheering something that Michael Gove says, but he’s just been on BBC saying that allotments are ok as form of exercise (socially distancing clearly). Golf isn’t!


These, what to do with them? How to make sure they don’t come back?

They look like aphid larva to me…?! If so, according to the google-god you can often “get rid of aphids larva by wiping or spraying the leaves of the plant with a mild solution of water and a few drops of dish soap”.

I’m sure there are better horticulturalists on this community though, so maybe wait for a more expert response… :slight_smile:

Ladybirds will gobble them up.

It appeared that ants had a good go last time I saw these on my chillis. I took them out doors and popped them near an ants nest. They were all gone the next day but it might well be something else responsible.

food for ladybirds and other insects …that then are food for birds and bats…etc etc !

I wipe off excess amounts with fingers and worse case use a biodegradable soap solution

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We are sadly short of ladybirds indoors. Will take them outside to the communal garden to see what happens…

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I bet that’s basil, yes? I get this too. About the only approaches are chemicals :frowning: , removing by hand (you never get them all and do they ever spread!) or spraying/wiping with soapy solution as @inbar suggests. However be aware that too strong a solution can damage the plant. Here’s a ‘recipe’: https://homeguides.sfgate.com/use-household-dish-soap-control-aphids-40992.html


Yup greenfly and other aphids…

All the other responses are sensible. I had them badly on peppers in my greenhouse last year, and shook/wiped some off, but also used a fairly benign pesticide spray too as it was the only way I was getting rid of them. I use the same one for blackfly on broad beans at allotment, as there’s no way I can remove all them by hand.

I suspect the aphids on my peppers came with the plants, as the other plants in greenhouse, mainly tomatoes, didn’t get it. I grow just about everything else from seed now.

Aphids are really hard to get rid of because they almost always come back. Ants “farm” them and will quickly carry them back up if you simoly dislodge them. With an infestation like the one pictured I’d take out the whole plant and eat it (hopefully minus most of the aphids!)

Aphids jump off when disturbed, then climb back up the plant. One trick is to take the plant outside (gently without disturbing the aphids), turn it upside down and gently shake it. The aphids should jump off onto the ground. Do this a few times and you should quickly reduce the population significantly.


I’ve so far largely avoided blackflies on the broad beans. As soon as there are no more flower buds appearing I pinch out the growing tips. Sometimes I’m a little late doing it but then I just cut off all the affected section which, so far at least, has always been above the last flowers anyway.

Maybe I’ve been lucky but this has worked for me so far.

I assume this is historic and not the current year? Mine are only about 4-5 inches high right now! :smile:

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