General Plants

Leftover Seeds

I have some seeds left over from last year which I wont be using this year.

  • ‘Telephone’ Tall Climbing Pea
  • ‘Ramosa Calabrese’ Broccoli
  • ‘Frise Vert Fonce’ Curly Parsley
  • Runner Bean Enorma

If you are interested in getting some of these seeds, please send an email to ( first come first serve).

General Guestposts Plants

Seed Management At The Villas

This is a post from Guestblogger Bridget Elahcene. Bridget writes about her Life At The Villas (@lifeatthevillas)

Seed Catalogues

Buying seeds surely has to be one of the most exciting parts of growing your own. Tantalising seed catalogues arrive in the post with colourful pictures of perfect produce… Many an hour of a winter evening have I spent trawling through such publications and dreaming of the months to come and I know I’m not alone.

Try and try again

Poppy seedlingsIndeed, as the years go by I have tried all sorts of weird and wonderful things that I have chosen because they cheekily winked at me from the pages of one seed catalogue or another. Some have worked while others have not. With growing as with a lot of things in life, you never finish acquiring knowledge and surely that’s what makes it such fun. Inevitably we find out what works and what doesn’t work and importantly learn from our mistakes. Consequently when a particular vegetable is a success, it makes sense to grow it again and again.

General Lists Plants

Buying Seeds

On a sunny but cold afternoon I finally decided on which seeds to buy for next growing season. Ordering seeds is not something I do lightly. A lot of consideration goes into it because let’s face it, I have to look at and work with the plants that come out of it for the whole growing season. I do not want to get frustrated again like I did with the broccoli I had sown this year.

Early Variety

I have chosen a lot of early variety’s due to the short growing season we have here and I am going to try to plant out some of my tomatoes in the garden. This because my plastic greenhouses finally gave in this year. After a few seasons a lot of the plastic deteriorated. Hopefully with some fences made from scrap twigs I can keep this relentless wind away from the garden.

I have ordered most of my seeds at, second time I have ordered there and am very enthusiastic about the quality of seeds. What I also like very much is that they encourage saving your own seeds, something I have not done yet but am going to try in 2012.


So these are the seeds I have ordered at realseeds;

  • Latah super early salad tomato – This is a bush variety that tolerates short and cold summers
  • Grushovka dual use tomato – Great in salads or sauces
  • Aquilon Green Bush Bean – a French bean with long pods, also an early variety
  • Giant Red celery – will withstand cold weather
  • Sutherland Kale – after my kale realisation I wanted to try something else. This is a very special kale, you should check it out
  • Sturon Brown Onion – never grown onions from seeds so will give this a try. I will also buy some onions to grow just in case
  • Sweet Chocolate sweet pepper – special bred for in cold climates and what a great color.!! Will try to grow this outside and on our veranda
  • Dr Wyche’s Yellow Tomatillo – I love Mexican food and these tomatillo’s are great for making sauces, green salsa or chutneys


I still have some seeds left over from last year like carrots, brussels sprouts and spinach and I will buy some early and late potatoes to grow. Being a big chili pepper fan I have decided that next year I will grow a few variety’s and order them from The Chili pepper Company. I will not go for the super super hot ones this time, I am thinking of saving that for when we have the polytunnel.




General Plants

Generations of Plants

In my family we have two plants which have been around for generations.

Schlumbergera Cactus

One is a Schlumbergera cactus (Christmas cactus) which belonged to my grandfather (my fathers side).

When he passed away the plant went to my parents and when a small shoot came out my dad transfered it to small pot for me.

Right the first year it gave a beautiful red flower. This year it has grown a lot but no flowers due to moving house twice. We have named the plant Grandpa, I know kinda weird.

We actually say, “be careful with Grandpa” when my dad moves the big plant from the table on my parents veranda.


Clivia Miniata

The second plant is a Clivia Miniata (Bush Lilly).

My grandmother (my mother’s side) had the original plant, my mother got the first shoot and I got a shoot from that shoot. Next to our Clivia offsprings there are many more going around my family from this one original plant.

Last year my dad had two flowers in one plant and my aunt always calls when her Clivia is blooming.

We all seem to think the plant embodies a piece of my grandmother and my mother who are sending us some flowery happiness from above.