By Euro Weekly News Media • 01 March 2013 • 15:24
Last week we looked at propagating plants, here are some more ways to grow your own….
Firstly stem and leaf cuttings inserted in pots of compost can dry out. The best way of preventing this is to place a pot of cuttings inside a clear or semi opaque plastic bag and then blow up and seal the bag. The cuttings can be left in this microclimate until strong new growth is observed.
Secondly cuttings can rot off. The chance and extent of this can be minimised by washing and sterilising plant pots, sterilising the potting compost on a tray in an oven, adding sand or fine grit to the potting compost to achieve good drainage, adding a few drops of a fungicide to the watering can or spray before watering cuttings when first planted and when subsequently required.
Thirdly don’t be tempted to plant new plants too early. Be patient and wait until there are signs of a good root ball and the weather has warmed up in the spring. Then harden them off for a few days in the sun before finally planting in the garden or in pots.
One can of course propagate from seed. Seeds can be purchased in packets, collected from your own plants or swapped with friends. The advantages include being able to tap into specialist seed catalogues that include many seeds of varieties of plants rarely available from nurseries or in the case of vegetables heritage or heirloom seeds no longer or never available commercially.
If you want to grow something different obtain the catalogues of Chiltern Seeds or Semillas Silvestres via the internet. Unfortunately growing from seeds is a topic too long for this column. However it is thoroughly covered in Section 6.13 of our book ‘Your garden in Spain – Planning, planting and maintenance’ and Sections 4.12 and 4.13 of ‘Growing healthy vegetables in Spain’.
©Clodagh and Dick
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