Since our Labradors appeared in this blog they have started attempting to appear in any photos I take and there is talk of their own Facebook page and possibly an Agent!
1st May: Things I have been doing today.
😥 Dealing with sad Jasmine. Early flowering Jasmine has a habit of looking sad at this time of year (see photo). There is lots of die back and brown leaves and stems. Now normally all is well, you just have to get in there cut it back a little bit, thin it out, and with your hand pull out all the brown dead areas. However, sometimes and hopefully not now with this particular plant, you need to cut back to inspire new growth. If you do have to do this, then make sure you never cut more than two thirds; and if you do cut back you will have very sparse flowers that year.
One last word of warning, here in Spain there is a nice big spider that loves to hang around in Jasmine. Whilst cutting this one back I ended up with two falling into my t-shirt. My neighbours must have wondered why I was leaping round the garden throwing off my clothes.
🌴 Trimming Palms. In Spain trimming Palms is more or less an ongoing job. However, the important thing is to do it at the correct time. In our garden we have a number of very large Palms which are done professionally in January to ensure the Palm Weevil does not get in. But the smaller Palms I will tend to trim myself. Always cut the Palm just as the frond bends towards the ground and it is still green (see photo) If you leave it until the frond is hanging all the way down and has gone brown then the frond turns into a substance similar to iron and it is very difficult to cut unless you have a diamond tipped saw.
🍅 Planting tomatoes. I have never bothered to plant tomatoes in Spain because they are so cheap and plentiful. However, I was passing our local market the other day and I saw that a stall holder had some tomatoes seedlings. Upon enquiry it turned out they were only 10 cents each, it would have been rude not to buy some. I watered them well and left them to stand for an hour, then I planted them up in a large pot and again left them to stand in the shade for a whole day. This allows the small roots to draw up sufficient moisture into the leaves before putting them in the sun. If you don’t do this the sun will just desiccate them. I finished by mulching them with some pebbles I happened to have (see photo). This variety are large Beef type so I look forward to having them sliced on top of local Burgers – before you ask, no you can’t come round!
🌳 Trimming things up. I have been generally tidying things up as we have our annual Open Garden Day here in our village. Anyway, I thought you might like to see a nice photo of the trimmed up Mulberry tree and one of my new arches for climbing Roses. More information will be forthcoming over the next few weeks. However, keep Saturday 27th May free if you would like to visit the gardens – you can meet me, see the garden and my wife is doing cream teas – hooray!