Archive of posts from November 2007

Caterpillar update 3

The larger of the large white caterpillars are still feeding well despite the cold weather we’ve had over the last week or so. Unfortunately some of the smaller ones definitely didn’t survive the sharp frost. Interestingly enough many of the dead caterpillars are still clinging to the cabbage despite being killed by the frost being several days ago: However, amongst the large white caterpillars I did spot this unusual caterpillar. This is the caterpillar of... Read on

Pass the parsnips

We didn’t have much luck with parsnips last year. This year the above ground growth was looking pretty impressive but I wasn’t sure how they’d turn out. You’re supposed to wait until after the first frost before pulling up your fist parsnips. Given we had our first really good frost this week I thought we’d give them a go. As you can see the first three I pulled up were really pretty good and were... Read on

Building the heatsink

I’ve now started building the heatsink. This consists of a loop of pipe at the bottom of hole. I’ve drilled holes in the pipe and this will let air out: I’ve filled the hole with a mixture of stone and broken glass. The thermal properties of both should mean that the warm air permeating through should warm the fragments. They will keep the heat during the day and release it slowly over night (that’s the... Read on

Caterpillar update 2

This morning’s hard frost may have been beautiful but I don’t think it was great for the large white caterpillars (Pieris brassicae). I think the large caterpillars should be OK despite them looking pretty cold: However, I think the frost may have been too much for the less developed individuals. I’ll keep and eye on them and report on progress but they don’t seem to have done as well as the others. Read on

First hard frost of the winter

Today was the first hard frost of the year. The thermometer in the greenhouse registered the night time temperature dropping to -5°C. This did mean the morning was very cold but the garden looked beautiful…. so I took a few pictures: Frozen pond: View across the frosty green roof: Frosty edge to the green roof: Frost on a house leek (Sempervivum sp.) on the green roof: Frost on sedum (also on the green roof): Read on

Caterpillar update

A few days ago I mentioned a very late brood of large white caterpillars feeding on my cabbage. The caterpillars appear to be doing OK despite the cold weather so I’ve taken a picture of their progress. There is still quite a range of sizes but some are late instars now and should be able to pupate before the weather gets really cold. Read on

Some like it hot

Last week I put a max/min thermometer in the greenhouse. On Saturday the temperature peaked at an impressive 29°C, pretty good for November! This has been beneficial for the long-chilies as one of them has now started to turn red. On Sunday I went round filling the gaps between the base and the ground with concrete and also ran silicon sealant round the edges of the greenhouse frame. This should keep the draughts (and rain)... Read on