Our June meeting featured the welcome return of Claire Price who outlined the
principles and practices of plant propagation. She told us about willow water, about
which more below, and that washing pots and seed pans is now considered
unnecessary in most cases; clearly this means I haven’t been lazy all these years
just a step ahead of every one else.
It was heartening to have so many new members come to our meeting this month
and we look forward to a thriving club for the future.
Our next meeting will be the annual picnic which will be held on the 11th July.
This year’s rose show was simplified to just one class, and there was a magnificent
array of blooms on display.
The first prize was won by Sue Brown, Pauline Guglielmi came second and
Margaret Ridgwell took the third place. The results indicated a distinct preference
among our members for bright and strong colours.
Claire mentioned using willow water to root cuttings, and a consultation with
Professor Google has elicited the following further information.
Many gardeners use hormone rooting powder to help their cuttings strike, but this is
relatively expensive and very quickly becomes inactive. Willows are notoriously
easy to root from cut pieces; my father once made a pergola from willow poles and
after six months we had a willow grove. Apparently the shoots of plants have a
growth promoting substance, indole butyric acid (IBA),and willows have excessive
amounts of this compound.
To make the water, take a bunch of willow shoots and leaves, pour boiling water
over them, enough to cover them, and leave for 24 to 48 hours. Pour off the liquid
and keep in the fridge, or freeze as ice cubes for longer storage. Use the water to
steep the cuttings before putting into the tray or pot, or to water them after planting.
Some Things to do in July
1. Dead head roses, bedding plants and perennials to get more flowers.
2. Plant autumn flowering bulbs.
3. Water and feed plants in containers.
For more information visit the Heyford Gardening Club & Allotments page