A bit of a departure from my moisture related topics this week. I attended a conference in Sheffield with the title “Quality: Fuelling Growth – Reducing Risk”. Of course, I cannot write on my blog without at some point mentioning humidity, and Sheffield nicely obliged with a humid conference room. In this post for my blog I thought I would quickly run through the speakers and topics at the conference. My reason for writing about the conference is simple. All the presenters and the people organising the conference gave their time for free to support a local charity “The Children’s Hospital Charity”. I really liked the idea of hosting a conference and giving the proceeds from the conference to an excellent cause. Over £5000 was raised for the charity. Continue reading
At the beginning of July I wrote about my concerns with several days of very mild and damp weather that favours the growth of fungi. My main worry was rust fungus on our garlic, onions and leeks. Did this mean we should expect a bad season for the fungus powdery mildew on our newly planted courgette plants? Powdery mildew on the leaves of courgettes is a perennial problem and I have not yet managed to tie down the years when it’s likely to be worse, or find a prevention. As fungi like damp conditions, then I think with the mild weather we are having, a warning sign should be put up “Beware of Fungi”. Anyway this year I set up an experiment to see if powdery mildew could be controlled and I’m reporting what happened in this blog post. Continue reading
A mixed bag of things to talk about. An article about my eBook A Wet Look At Climate Change, a fungus called rust, and what we did with a glut of runner beans and courgettes. Continue reading
I suppose our garden has to feature a lot in my moisture topics at this time of the year. Everything’s growing quickly. We already have to deal with a glut of courgettes, runner beans and dwarf beans. Yesterday we had runner beans in a pasta dish for lunch AND runner beans as one of our vegetables in our evening meal! Another bit of vegetation that is growing very well just now is the lawn. Not all of it is growing well though, but that’s my fault.…….. Continue reading
Here’s a problem I do not lose any sleep over, Frizzy Hair! So why am I talking about it? Humidity of course. Somebody tweeted something like “Is this the most amazing product for frizzy hair in high humidity……” I actually thought it was a joke! Some sort of pretend science marketing ploy. Curiosity got to me and I looked up the “product”, which was not an actual product, but an ingredient with a name abbreviated to OFPMA.…….. Continue reading
I am getting a bit worried about the current weather. Staying with a gardening theme and fungi, we are having the type of weather that these microbes love. Days of showers and not enough sunshine to dry the ground. On top of that, the night time temperatures are sitting around about 11 to 13 centigrade. Very mild, damp and favourable for certain types of fungi. In my last post on this blog I talked about the fungi responsible for “damping off” by attacking young plants. This time my focus is on another troublesome fungi that attacks both mature and young plants, the dreaded “Mildew”.……..
I got an email from Susannah who had picked up on my garden theme in my last post on this blog. Susannah’s got a problem with damping off in seedlings. She has just lost three young cucumbers and asked if I had any advice. Damping off is a fungal infection of plants, usually seedlings but can affect more mature plants also. I too had recently had a problem after repotting a supermarket bought basil plant. Within a couple of days in its new pot, almost the entire surface of the compost around the base of the basil was white with fungal mycelium. After a few more days most of the stems of the basil were covered in fungus and turning black… Continue reading
Just had a delivery of a load of chippings.
When driving home last week I passed a neighbour’s garden and saw Fergal’s van “Tree Care” outside. Somewhere above me I could hear the sound of a chain saw. Knowing that Fergal would not hear his mobile, or really want to be talking on his phone when hanging off a tree, I sent him a text. He texted back about half an hour later to say that he’d be around all week and would drop off a load of chippings. On Saturday I saw a van pulling out of our driveway and thought it was just turning, or had come into the wrong driveway. It wasn’t until the van straightened along the road that I saw it was Fergal and give him a thumbs up. But his delivery of chippings was over two weeks after his text back…… Continue reading
I’m always on the lookout for moisture related stories. Part of this is about testing my own knowledge and asking myself if I can make sense of the story. Last week I was following stuff on Twitter seeing if anything caught my eye. Suddenly out jumps what I would call a little gem of a story. Actually it was not a story as such but a research paper that had just been published. However, the content was very much part of my story in My World of Moisture …. Continue reading
Just had another trip to Edinburgh. This was a pre-booked visit to see my mum, but if you have been reading my blog, you will know she died in early March. So we had two full days in the beautiful city of Edinburgh to relax and enjoy what Edinburgh has to offer. Two things-to-do were planned in the days before setting off to Dublin for our flight to Edinburgh. A favourite attraction for me is the National Museum of Scotland in Chamber’s Street and that was put on the agenda. Picking inside locations fitted with the weather forecast, which was possibly snow! Another event chosen was more of a touristy venue, the Edinburgh Gin Distillery that is amazingly slap bang in the city centre. We booked this online for the day after our arrival. You may be thinking at this point that I’ve run out of things to say on moisture and turned my blog into a travelogue. Not so, it was at the Edinburgh Gin Distillery that the subject of moisture jumped out at me, but not directly…. Continue reading