Hackney Permaculture


Sowing some seeds
March 30, 2009, 9:08 pm
Filed under: Doing | Tags: , , , ,

At last, ’tis the time to start sowing!

After waiting an age for some seeds to arrive from Tamar Organics, Rachael and I got involved with some toilet rolls, potting compost, propagating okra and tomatoes.

Everyone seems to have an opinion on the best way to propagate so I am going to break ranks and try everything which means using a rag tag army of bottles, cartons, toilet rolls, food cartons, leaf mulch, compost, soil and love.

Rachael sowing okra

Rachael sowing okra



Rainwater harvesting
March 27, 2009, 8:45 pm
Filed under: Doing | Tags: , ,

A little while back I ordered two waterbutts from Water Butts Direct – I was hoping I might find something I could reuse around the street but haven’t yet so buying these in seemed like a good option.

Fitting them was a bit of a chore because I can’t get access to the back wall of the house so as you can see from the picture below I threaded a grey ten metre pipe from the black diverting harvesting thingy attached to the drainpipe, down the stairs to the waterbutts below:

Rainwater harvesting



Dibbing potatoes at Laurieston Hall
March 22, 2009, 8:52 pm
Filed under: Doing, Learning | Tags: , , , , , ,

I was up in Scotland over the weekend visiting some friends of mine at Laurieston Hall, an intentional community near Castle Douglas. They were all up nice and early on sunday morning to dib potatoes and kindly let me get involved too!

The 101 on potatoes in that you need to chit them which can be done in a number of ways – basically you just leave them somewhere and they sprout little green shoots. Most of us have done it by accident before so I am sure you are glad you now have a name for it so next time you can make it look intentional. Then you dib, which is the lingo for making a hole, I seem to remember them being about a foot deep, then you plant them. Nice. These were ‘earlies’ which go in in March and I have totally forgotten all the rest I learnt about potatoes… must take notes next time.

Jamie dibbing

Jamie dibbing

The bottom of a potato

The bottom of a potato - note the little bump

The top of a potato

The top of a potato

Lots of other things growing here too - Laurieston Hall in spring

Lots of other things growing here too - Laurieston Hall in spring



Container gardening using pottery packing crates
March 9, 2009, 8:18 pm
Filed under: Collecting, Doing | Tags: , , , ,

A friend of mine who imports pottery was about to skip some used packing crates …and did I want them! Of course….

After wrestling with myself a little, deciding whether to varnish or paint them, I have left them natural but lined them with an old shower curtain I picked up from Hackney Freecycle to try to prevent too much moisture from coming into contact with the wood.

The space outside my studio is fairly shaded so I have popped a couple of raspberry canes in each along with various bulb and flowers that were in the lovely old bathtub that used to hold them and I have now emptied of soil and been allowed to take from my outside studio back home to form part of the grey-water recycling system – thank you Laura, the Landlady.

container gardening using pottery packing crates

Hopefully I can guide the raspberries around the fence

Old tub ready to move to a new life and home

Old tub ready to move to a new life and home