I’ve just plugged in the propagator. Tomatoes and peppers originate from central America; aubergine from the Indian subcontinent. These plants need a lot of heat and light to grow and for the fruits to ripen, so an early start under cover is important. Could have been earlier, but what can you do?!

After last year’s high hopes and disappointments with tomatoes I have decided to grow for containers.  I’m making a virtue of this – a trial of five varieties and a number of spares to share – as the One Pot Pledge is a great way to get city growers going.  Right now South London Master Gardeners and the people they support are looking forward to a special training next Saturday on container growing.  If you have growing skills or would like support to get growing this year contact me here in my project coordinator role for Garden Organic.

Anecdotally, last year tomatoes growing in open ground and/or in public growing spaces got blight whilst containers at home seemed to be ok.  It’s as if the blight spores came down in the rain, which also provided lovely conditions for the fungal infection to spread. Containers usually don’t capture rainwater as the surface area is small and covered by foliage in any case – a positive spin on the need to daily water containers!

Anyway, 5 mini toms, a French aubergine that does ok outside apparently, and pepper seeds given to me by Olatz. She uses seeds from her native Basque country at her east-facing (ie sun half the day only) work growing space. They have really nice wide window ledges for getting seeds going.

As I glance across to my Super 7 mini-propagator, I can see a minor heat haze shimmering air effect over it.  Hot enough to get germination started, I reckon!



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