, plant breeders have now solved three problems. Cucumbers bear male and female flowers separately, and it has always been necessary, when growing the traditional long, smooth, greenhouse or frame cucumbers, to remove all the male flowers. Otherwise they were pollinated, resulting in bitter misshapen fruits.
The plant breeders, Read more [...]
Cucumbers are not the easiest of vegetables to grow, but if you choose the right varieties to start with and give them the regular care they need, you can produce a successful crop at your first attempt.
As well as the usual salad uses, there are various recipes in which cucumbers
can be included; they can even be stuffed and cooked. They are a more Read more [...]
How to Grow Cucumbers
Cucumber - Cucumis sativa
A member of the Gourd family, this subject has a long history of culture, being mentioned in the Old Testament as one of the fruits the Israelites longed for while in captivity.
There are records showing that the Romans went to a lot of trouble to cultivate cucumbers
, which apparently were regularly Read more [...]
Guide to Growing Brussels Sprouts
Brussels Sprouts - Brassica oleracea var. gemmifera
The Brussels sprout vegetable was known and cultivated in Belgium, particularly in areas around Brussels nearly 800 years ago.
For best results provide an open, airy situation, with wide spacing, to ensure good sprout development. A long season of growth is required. Read more [...]
Guide to Growing Lettuces
There are two main types of lettuce
, the cabbage
and the cos, and a great many varieties of each differing in colour, crispness, size and season.
Lettuces like a well-dug, rather rich, well-manured soil
. They are frequently treated purely as a catch-crop, and good yields can be obtained from sowings made on the ridges of Read more [...]
The Aquilegia genus that belongs to the Ranunculaceae family includes many species that grow in meadows, light woodland and mountainous regions in the northern hemisphere. A. caerulea is an upright, short-lived herbaceous perennial, native to the Rocky Mountains in North America, with deeply lobed leaves. Aquilegias produce large, spurred flowers in Read more [...]
The genus, a member of the Ranunculaceae family, comes from the temperate regions in Asia. Anemones are delicate, tuberous herbaceous perennials
that form dense clusters of deeply divided leaves and spread very fast. Anemone blanda is hardy but should be protected against severe frost. It flowers in spring with open, saucer-shaped, starry blooms that Read more [...]
Mixed borders contain a bit of everything – trees, shrubs, roses, evergreens, flowers and bulbs – so that they remain colourful all year round. You need quite a large area to fit in so many different plants, but in a small garden
you can make a smaller mixed border without the trees and use only small shrubs. One way of planning the border is to Read more [...]
The Alyssum genus belongs to the Cruciferae family and is native to Europe, north Africa and Asia. The plant produces dense clusters of white, creamy, yellow or pink flowers that appear in spring and early summer. As a cushion-forming plant it is ideal for rockeries, flowerbeds and even cracks in walls, growing best in a sunny position. It will also Read more [...]
The Alchemilla genus that belongs to the Rosaceae family includes some 300 species of frost-hardy herbaceous perennials
, native to Europe and Asia. A. mollis is particularly popular because of its beautiful, yellow-green flowers, which are borne in summer, and the grey-green, round, palmate or lobecl hairy leaves. A. mollis is also known under the name Read more [...]
This herbaceous perennial, a member of the Labiatae family, grows in the wild in the cooler regions of Europe, Africa, Asia and Australia. Ajuga reptans is a creeping, evergreen, rhizomatous perennial that spreads very quickly by means of runners. The attractive, basal leaf rosettes produce spikes of dark blue tubular flowers in spring and early summer. Read more [...]
This genus with 30 species belongs to the family of the Compositae and is native to the exposed, rocky regions of central and eastern Asia. Ajania pacifica is a low, well-branched herbaceous perennial with sinuate, mid-green leaves with a silvery edge, covered with woolly hairs underneath. Ajania flowers in autumn with enchanting umbels of yellow flower Read more [...]
The genus includes 20 perennial species and belongs to the family of the Labiatae. A. mexicana, Mexican giant hyssop, is a bushy, short-lived perennial with grey-green, fragrant, oval pointed leaves, native to Mexico. It grows up to 90 cm (35 in) high and produces red, pink or white flower spikes 30 cm (12 in) long from mid to late summer. It thrives Read more [...]
This Adiantum genus, a member of the Adiantaceae family, forms vigorous, arching fronds that grow in dense clumps. In summer this warmth-loving house plant can also be placed outdoors on the balcony or terrace in partial or complete shade. The maidenhair fern
grows best in well-drained soil
, rich in humus, which should kept moist at all times. During Read more [...]
The Acorus genus, a member of the Araceae family, only has two species of grasslike, evergreen perennials. Because the flower spikes that appear in spring are rather inconspicuous, Acorus is usually planted for its dense, dark green foliage, which is particularly fragrant when dried. Depending on the species, the leaves may be variegated with a yellow Read more [...]
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