Greenhouse abundance


I love my new greenhouse. It’s actually fifty years old, and was falling apart when I moved in last summer. Mum was using it as a (very leaky) potting shed. But we found a man to repair it for us, and I feel I’ve taken a giant stride forward as a gardener. Suddenly it’s easy to overwinter dahlias and get veg going as plug plants. I’ve had my first early strawberry, and there are more ripening. It’s been easier than ever to have salad all winter. And I can keep on gardening in the rain.

The greenhouse isn’t heated, but I’ve discovered the little conservatory attached to the house keeps surprisingly warm at night. My tomatoes grew like triffids: they’re already five feet tall with pea-sized fruit. I’m hoping for a season twice as long as the couple of months I’m used to.

I’m having one last go at growing sweet peppers and chillies, having given up on them many times before. Over the past fifteen years I’ve tried various ‘outdoor’ varieties in my vertical coldframe and other sheltered places; but I’m really optimistic that they’ll actually fruit and ripen in the greenhouse. And I’m keeping my fingers crossed that pests stay away (I used to console myself for not having a greenhouse by imagining all the dreadful plagues that would come with it).