Damson Cottage Garden

August week 4… Growing cyclamen and a disaster

We bought these beautiful hardy cyclamen plants from Cambridge market on Saturday. I’ve never grown cyclamen before and wanted to give them a try under some trees to add a splash of colour into Autumn. Cyclamen are woodland plants which like to grow in sheltered spots in partial shade with free draining, rich soil.

Growing cyclamen

I am hoping these little plants will spread under the trees and being perennials will come back year after year. They appear in Autumn from their dormant tubers, grow through the Winter and die in Spring – the exact opposite of most of my garden plants! Wikipedia tells me in the Mediterranean, where cyclamen are native, their seeds are spread by ants, who eat the sticky seed covering and discard the seeds. I hope our ants are up to the task!

How to grow cyclamen

How to grow cyclamen

Now to our disaster… on Sunday from about 4am to 10am we had a power cut – certainly not a disaster in most cases, unless you are incubating eggs in an electric incubator! Our poor eggs were cold to touch when we came down for breakfast and realised what had happened. We warmed the eggs up again by holding them in our hands and put them back in the incubator when it had warmed up to the magic 37.5 degrees.

The poor little chicks. They have just started to move about inside the eggs and there has definitely been much less movement after the power cut disaster – they are due to hatch on the 29th August so I will keep you posted, fingers crossed! Jane

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