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 July 23rd

Sorry for the late update but this is my busiest time of the year at work and I just don't have the time to do much, I've only had 2 days off in the last 4 weeks so I can't really be arsed to spend it taking photos of lettuces..........

So all I can do is to put a couple of videos up to show how things are progressing at the moment.

So, things are growing well at the moment with no major problems or pests to speak of.

Harvested the first outdoor potatoes in pots which still had a few flowers on, as you will see, the old way of thinking that waiting until the flowers fall off then waiting a week or two before lifting seems to be bad advice, as these were way too big for new potatoes.

So that's about it at the moment folks.

I'm going to have to get another web server with easier website update facilities as this one is really doing my head in

It takes a minute to upload a photo which is crackers.

I used to be able to add loads of pics in seconds but since they've updated it it's now utter crap.

Hence the videos.

July 27th.

Contaminated Compost

Unfortunately I have recently found a lot of my plants and crops growing in pots in a certain compost displaying the classic symptoms of Aminopyrald or Clopyralid poisoning.

This is a chemical present in some weedkillers including some lawn weedkillers and can find itself in commercial composts if green waste or garden waste has been used in the manufacture of such composts due to people disposing of contaminated grass clippings etc in their green bins, and negligent screening practices being carried out by compost manufacturers.

I first noticed the symptoms in one of my tomato plants which was planted later than the rest in this new batch of compost I purchased.

The dwarfed, stunted and distorted new growth is a classic sign of this contamination affecting the plant.

I have now noticed that my potatoes that I topped up with the same compost a few weeks ago are displaying the classic signs too, this being cupped new growth and again stunted new growth.

In order to prove to myself that the compost was contaminated I did an experiment using the same compost and direct sowed some French Beans into it as beans are particularly succeptible to this contamination.

As you can see the seed leaves don't look too distorted, this is because they grow from the energy within the seed and don't need any energy from the compost as the roots aren't formed yet so will be initially unaffected by the contaminated compost.

But then later as you can see, once the plant starts to get it's nutrients and energy from the compost the new growth is again dwarfed, distorted and barely growing and again showing the classic symptoms of this type of poisoning as the little twisted growing points should actually be new big leaves, not twisted malformed poisoned distortions.

So please look out for these symptoms and contact the compost suppliers immediatley should you see similar distorted, cupped, fern like, or generally distorted growth.

Don't assume it's something you've done wrong if your plants aren't looking healthy, It could be the compost that's killing them, not you.


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