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It is possible to economise on hanging basket plants -


by using plants you already have in the garden.
As plant plugs are £1.96 each at the GC I decided to
replant dwarf red Dianthus into my balcony half baskets,
with bits of creeping plants from the rockery.
I am removing the old potting soil from the baskets,
teasing out any plant roots, reviving it with my Magic Mix
which is compost+horticultural sand+fish,blood and bone
fertiliser+small pet litter all well stirred up together in a bucket. (Soil is ground up rock.)
I found 3 half basket Eco-liners in the sale box at the GC and altered them on my sewing machine to fit the shape of the half baskets. Cost £5.25.
I am hoping this arrangement will save me a lot of work watering over the next 3 years, being permanent over the winter months too.

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Hi Diane, that seems awfully expensive for plug plants, I think I would be doing the same as you, Derek.

18 Feb, 2015


What are eco liners?

18 Feb, 2015


Eco liners are compostable bags and trash can liners. My dog poo bags are made from this material which will in time be completely broken down. This is a great alternative to plastic liners and bags.

19 Feb, 2015


That's a brilliant idea and plants from the rockery are perfect for hanging baskets. They are also very forgiving if you forget to water them.

19 Feb, 2015


The sort of eco compost bin liner bags we use wouldn't last the whole season so I thought Diane had found something else. .

19 Feb, 2015


Good idea Diane.....

19 Feb, 2015


I had. They are thick firm stiff hairy material like thick cardboard. I just happened to see them on the 'Sale' items display.
I had put some rockery trailing plants in the balcony half baskets last year. Removing the old compost I found they had multiplied, so was able to split them for this year's display.
Another point in using plants from the garden is that I always bought plug plants in March, had to keep them covered in fleece until end of April ( because of frosts at night,) until first week in June, watering too.
So using Dianthus from the garden means less work during the early part of the year, also I can get these jobs done whilst we are still in Feburary.
Steamed Carrots grown in planters on the balcony have a much better flavour than supermarket ones. Have decided to grow all my Carrots this way 2015,
the balcony is about 14 ' off the ground They should be free from Carrot Fly as Snoop says it flies at 18" off the ground. Be interesting to see what happens. All good fun.

19 Feb, 2015


We'd better add that to the ways of avoiding carrot fly - move into a high apartment!! I know what you mean now Diane, I've seen those in Wilcos.

19 Feb, 2015


Another thought. I am going to sow a small pinch of Parsley seed monthly on Seed Sowing compost, in an ice cream tub. Germinate indoors in the warm. Place out on the balcony under fleece for continuous crop. Saves space.

20 Feb, 2015


I was always told it goes 7 times to the devil before it comes up, but I'm sure you'll get the better of him!

20 Feb, 2015


There is a trick to sowing Parsley seed. Wet and warmth
seemed to be the answer when I tried it before.
Otherwise succumb gracefully to buying a pot of seeded shoots in the supermarket, and transplant carefully.

22 Feb, 2015


Fanny Craddock once explained that she was 100% successful by always planting her seeds in to soil which she had just poured boiling hot water. I do that now and been successful with both pots and out in the garden. As Diane says it is easy to buy a pot of parsley in the supermarket and pot some of them on. Regardless of how much of a stem of parsley you are going to use always cut the stem as far down as possible to encourage the plant to put up more shoots.

22 Feb, 2015

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