The advanced gardening thread

I’m aware that there’s a prior gardening thread, but can’t find it / couldn’t be bothered to look for it. This is a thread for those serious about a small to medium sized kitchen garden. I just started my own spring garden today, yukon gold seed potatoes, onion sets, and a variety of greens, including cabbage, kale and bok choy. The goal obviously is to be making champ and colcannon with freshly dug spuds in early May. Anyone else planning a spring garden?


Welcome back pal. I’m at tge arse end of my summer produce down under, hasn"t been great with the extreme heat. But looking forward to planting out my wunter veg wth crops similar to what you mentioned. More later

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Cheers mate. Hopefully yours won’t be an extended drought like we have had here for 3 years. It literally got so bad I was hand watering with recycled water from the kitchen sink. Glorious here in NorCal now though, soil is in great shape after a two months of rain.

In a few months I’ll have a blank canvas to reinstate my garden.
Will have a herb and salad garden somewhere pretty close to the backdoor and will plant the spuds and carrots further back the field, but at this stage that will be a project for Q1 2018.


I have been cultivating a chili plant indoors since last summer. Should I put it outdoors at some stage or should I keep it indoors? Also my basil plant and my mint plants give rise to the same question.

You can’t put a price on Fresh basil


It’s rare to see chillies growing outdoors in Ireland. Also unusual to see them over wintered but I suppose it’s possible.
They are not hardy so don’t put it out until May, if you must.

If you haven’t got a greenhouse I’d grow it in good light, keep it fed and watered and hopefully it will flower soon. Pollinate the flowers with a small paint brush. Once you have about 5-10 chillies per plant pick out the growing points and let it concentrate it’s energies on forming the peppers.

I assume we’re talking 6-9 inch pot size here.


Thanks. It flowered over the winter and I did that with the flowers and it produced 4 chillies What’re the growing points?

There are probably some varieties that would do OK outdoors in Ireland, depending on where you are located. A sunny sheltered spot should be fine for most sweet varieties in the east and southeast. All peppers need heat to produce a good crop, the hot varieties in particular. Why not build a greenhouse, when I lived in Ireland I build a very basic polyethylene one and had a great crop of tomatoes.

The growing points are at the top of the plant. Once you pinch this off it will produce more further down. Keep the plant sturdy and bushy, concentrating its growth on the peppers not height. Unfortunately your plant is a bit confused as to what time of year it is.

Start some more now from seed but you will need a temperature of about 22 deg C to get them going. You’ll need a propagator or sunny window.


@habanerocat living up to his username and playing a blinder here.

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I love seeing a fellow at one with his surroundings like that, connecting with earth

I’d have him down as the sort of lad that will live a long and happy life. Nature is the art of God, after all.

If you only knew…

I used grow the habaneros years ago. They are fair hot. Might try them again this year, but I already have my seed order put through. They need constant watering and watching in the height of the summer.

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a labour of love, you must get savage satisfaction to see them coming to fruition

They are dangerous little fuckers, although I had a work mate who made habanero jam which was delicious. The hottest I grow are Thai varieties which yield a massive crop.

Satisfaction? If only the wife would cook what I grow.

A Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall, she is not.

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Bought a damson tree for the patio there today. Planted parsley and moved some chillies and the mint to bigger pots.

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Don’t damson trees grow as big as apple trees?

Be careful with the mint. We keep ours in a separate little area as it grows and spreads fairly wildly

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It shouldn’t spread too far if it’s in a pot.