Easy Fleece Jackets

  • Don't let your plants go outside without a jacket or a blanket to keep them warm!

    Fleece_jacket_to_protect_from_frost Easy Fleece Jacket (small). by Haxnicks

    Plants cost a lot of money.  Plus if you've grown them from seeds or cuttings, then an awful lot of research, time and anxious moments too!  So you don't want early frost to catch you out.  This could at best set their growth back and at worst kill them off.

    The RHS offer several ways to avoid frost damage:-

    • Choose plants that are reliably hardy and suited to your growing conditions.
    • Cold air flows downwards on sloping ground, collecting at the lowest point creating what is known as a 'frost pocket' - avoid planting tender plants in areas such as this.
    • Grow slightly tender plants in a warm sunny spot like a south-facing wall, to provide extra warmth and winter protection
    • Cover plants with a double layer of horticultural fleece when frost is forecast
    • Mulch the root area of evergreens, conifers, tender shrubs and tender perennials with a thick layer of organic matter to prevent the ground becoming frozen
    • Move container grown plants to a sheltered part of the garden in cold weather and provide some extra protection by wrapping the pot in a fleece jacket
    • Leave the previous seasons’ growth on more tender plants until spring,  to provide valuable frost protection
    • Lift Tender plants or move them to a more sheltered position or greenhouse.  Ensuring that adequate heating and insulation is in place to prevent damage.
    • Protect fruit and strawberries from frost by packing with bracken or straw or fleece
    • Avoid applying nitrogen-rich fertilisers late in the season as they stimulate soft growth which is especially vulnerable to frost damage
    • Plant tender bedding plants out after the danger of frost has passed; this is generally late May in the south of England and June elsewhere. Always harden plants before planting outside

    So choosing the right plant in the first place is clearly a good idea.  As is, moving them to the greenhouse if you have one, or a more sheltered spot.  A good solution but not always possible with larger heavier plants.  As the RHS recommend a great alternative as autumn approaches and early frosts threaten is to use a fleece.  The Haxnicks Easy Fleece Jacket.  is a simple way to protect exotic plants, hanging baskets and other semi-hardy plants in pots patio containers.

    You may have used horticultural fleece, bought off a giant roll at the Garden Centre?  But this is unruly and requires securing.  The fleece jacket is quicker and easier.  Slip it over your plant and the job is done. Secure with the integral, rot-proof drawstring and locking toggle = instant protection against frost, harsh weather and pests.

    Fleece_cloche_over_bedIf your plants are in the ground rather than containers then it may be a fleecy cloche or even a blanket you need to instantly cosette your crops.  Both have the advantage that not only will they protect crops this end of the season but, laid over the soil in Spring they can bring it up to temperature before all your friends.  This allows you to sow or plant out weeks ahead of others.  As a result it will extend the growing season and hopefully reward you for your care with an increased yield.

    Haxnicks Easy Fleece Jackets are available in three sizes, priced at £7.99 per pack

  • The Potty Gardener sows Christmas Potatoes

    Haxnicks Garden Products can be brought onlineSurely it’s too early to be thinking about Christmas, I hear you say. At least I think I do, amongst the many other voices in my head. I am indeed thinking about Christmas. More specifically I am thinking about potatoes at Christmas. Even more specifically, delicious homPotato_Patio_planterse-grown roast potatoes at Christmas being proudly placed on the table to gasps of awe and admiration and maybe a harmonious chorus of Gloria!

    Normally, British potatoes are home-grown from early spring throughout the summer. Instead I am planning to sow some spuds now in Potato Planters, nurture them through the autumn and hopefully harvest them in time to share oven space with whatever beast we decide to roast for Christmas lunch this year.

     

    Which variety?

    At this time of year, cold-stored potato tubers should available from specialist seed merchants.  Maris Peer or Nicola are good winter varieties that don’t need chitting.  Having said that the ones that I have just picked up from my local Garden Centre are vigorously chitting.  Looks like they are chomping at the bit.  So we will see if this makes a difference.

    I have had varying success in the past just using supermarket spuds. Grandpa Haxnicks tells me that this is because harvested potatoes go into a dormant state for some months before they are ready to produce new shoots. So, either I found particularly stress resistant tubers in the supermarket.  Or they had been on the shelf for a long time and were very ready to get out and breed!

    Haxnicks Potato Patio Planter foliage

    Plant your eager-to-breed tubers in the potato bags.  Plant on about 6 inches of multi- purpose compost and cover with the same amount again. Each time the foliage pushes through the soil, cover it again until the bag is full. Keep them watered and fed with a liquid fertiliser. The Bage can be kept in a greenhouse, but should also be OK outside provided they are given frost protection. A cosy Fleece Jacket should do the trick, no need to bother with a scarf or gloves. In the autumn, when the foliage yellows and dies back you can cut it off.  then leave the potatoes in fairly dry soil until Christmas. Once harvested, be reassured that they will then enter their dormant state and wil be perfect for peeling and roasting.

  • The Potty Gardener gardening upside down

    Haxnicks Garden Products can be brought online

    Approaching your gardening from a whole new angle can be refreshing, but I don't recommend this extreme angle. Whilst you can get a good look at low lying weeds and easily spot those hidden courgettes that are turning into monster marrows it can leave you disorientated and confused.  Actually the blog title 'gardening upside down' is not so much a reference to my physical orientation but rather a particular gardening error I made.....

    Plant Pots for Planting Bulbs from Haxnicks

    This week I was given some very smart new pots as a rather belated house warming present and with Autumn upon us decided to plant them up with bulbs as a welcoming doorstep display.  I planned to layer the bulbs for a full on flower fiesta throughout the spring.  The idea is that you plant your bulbs in layers according to their flowering height, tall ones at the bottom and shorties at the top. So in the bottom layer of compost I put tulip bulbs, in the middle narcissus and in the top went some incy wincy Iris bulbs. Unfortunately I wasn't really concentrating (perhaps the residual effect of having been upside down) and couldn't remember whether I had actually put the bulbs in the right way up. I am assured by Grandpa Haxnicks that if I have planted them upside down it won't stop them growing,  but may cause a slight delay in growth whilst the shoots re-orientate and perform a U turn!  Anyway, I was more careful with the second pot, layering the bulbs nose up. Finally I topped off the pots with mini cyclamen to provide some winter colour whilst the bulbs grow below.

    Cyclamen Flower Pots from Haxnicks

    Grandpa Haxnicks has kindly given me some Easy Fleece Jackets to pop over the plants should the weather turn really cold and threaten to damage my doorstep display. All that I need to do now is find some pot feet to help with the drainage. I have been warned that both the pot feet and my own should be placed firmly on the ground!

     

     

     

     

     

  • Winter Plant Protection

    Haxnicks small Fleece Jackets for Winter Plant Protection

    Good morning Gardeners! Are you wrapping up to go outside today? Coat, scarf, gloves, woolly hat perhaps? Well, if so then spare a thought and a few pennies perhaps for your more vulnerable plants that might need something to keep the cold, damp and frostbite at bay. Wrap them up with a Haxnicks Easy Fleece Jacket, an Extra thick Fleece blanket or a Victorian Bell cloche. We often receive questions about looking after container grown plants in the winter (listen in Potty Gardener), one of the most common being cordyline palms. I would suggest gathering all the leaves together and holding them in an upright position with some string or soft-tie, but when it is really cold an Easy Fleece Jacket or even two should help to protect the foliage and stop the frost getting to the growing point of the palm. Do make sure to remove the jackets when the weather is warmer to avoid rotting.

    The Royal Horticultural Society offers some good advice on protecting plants during the winter months and unless I am very much mistaken it looks like they have opted to spend their pennies on a Haxnicks Victorian Bell Cloche.

    Growing White Flowers with Haxnicks

    Many plants bravely push on through the cold without any protection but one in particular never fails to give me a childlike surprise every year. Spotting the first modest blooms of snow drops in my garden always makes me smile, but if they are still hiding in your garden then why not wrap up and warm yourself inside and out by a visit to a snowdrop display in someone else's? The National garden Scheme has a list of snowdrop gardens open in aid of nursing and caring charities in February.

  • Don’t wait for the first frost

    To protect plants and trees from frost damage, they need to be covered. So when the weather forecast is for overnight frost, it is advisable to be prepared. Haxnicks’ Easy Fleece Jackets are ideal for potted patio plants as you can easily pull them over the plants and draw the bottom together using the integral drawstring which closes off the air flow giving the plant its own microclimate. With a choice of 3 sizes the Easy Fleece Jackets are ideal for both large and small plants as well as for hanging baskets.

    Haxnicks Garden Fleece Jackets

    Made from high quality 35gsm polypropylene fleece material, the jackets will protect your plants but also allow light and moisture to filter through to provide a healthy growing environment and the soft material does not cause harm to buds or leaves.

    Haxnicks Fleece Jackets

    Once the threat of frost is past, simply remove the Fleece Jackets, fold them and store them until the next time you hear the words “.....and tonight there will be an overnight frost”!

  • Spring clean in November!

    By Jo Sensecall - November is “spring clean” time the garden! With nothing to plant, you should clear any remains of crops for composting and fork over bare ground. Store away hoses, pots and canes and have a general tidy up.
    Cover any pots that you have which are not frost proof with jute material, or fleece, this will stop them from cracking.  Lifting them off the ground with blocks of wood or special ceramic feet is also good idea.
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    Use our Easy Fleece Jackets to cover any fragile container plants and to protect them from early or late frosts. These Easy Fleece Jackets are ideal for overwintering plants in containers or hanging baskets and have an integral drawstring for easy and practical use.

  • 5 Easy Ways to protect your plants from frost

    Post by Robbie
    Although you can never completely eradicate the threat of frost damage to the plants in your garden, you can at least use these helpful tips as a guide to prepare for the worst:

    1. Group plants together Choose a location at the top of the garden facing north, west or south. Plants in containers may be grouped together so that You can easily create a microclimate for your plants which allow them to provide shelter for each other and make it easier for you to cover and water them in one go.
    Haxnicks Garden Fleece Jackets


    2. Cover plants in Fleece Make sure you cover plants in fleece or hessian/jute.  This will protect them from frost and allow light and moisture to filter through.  If you want to make it even easier, you can use fleece jackets such as the one in the picture, which just pull over the top and fasten at the bottom.  Note:  Pots (especially terracotta ones) can suffer from frost damage so make sure you cover these in the same way.


    3.  Move tender plants to the greenhouse or indoors if you have the space.  You can also overwinter (gardening jargon for plant hibernation) by covering them with a cold frame, plant house or a polythene grower system cover.


    4.  Use mother nature!  It sounds crazy, but in fact snow can help to insulate your plants, especially from cold drying winds.  Make sure you still clear snow from tree branches and conservatory/greenhouse roofs, though, as snow can become heavy and cause damage. Use mulch (old leaves, home made compost) and straw to provide natural cover for tree roots, especially evergreens in pots and with roots above the surface of the soil.


    5. Keep plants watered In the winter plants lose moisture in the cold, dry air so make sure you water them if they need it and this will improve their natural defense against the harsh effects of winter weather.  Too much water (rainwater included) is  a bad thing though - you don't want the ground around the roots to freeze.

    We are well known for being experts in plant protection - so why not drop us a line or comment in the box below if you have any questions, would like more details or even if you have your own tried and tested tips for protecting your plants from cold weather.

  • Potato progress - Winter crops

    Haxnicks Potato Patio Planters

    Hopefully, you are all enjoying your own home-grown potatoes by now, and doesn't the taste make it all worthwhile? But it ain't over til the fat lady sings (at christmas) - Once you've emptied your Potato Patio Planters, keep them in mind, as you can very easily have another batch of fresh home-grown spuds ready for the Christmas table!

    All you have to do is replant from mid-August to early September. Seed potatoes will be available from most garden centres and mail-order companies - Alternatively, you could just keep back a few spuds from your summer crop and use them as your seed potatoes! Add a little straw/old leaves to the bottom of your planter - as this rots it will help to provide some warmth, protecting your winter potatoes from the cold. Then plant as normal.

    Potato foliage cannot handle the frost, so ideally bring your planters inside as the cold comes on - a greenhouse, barn, or the kitchen will do, as long as there is some light. As normal, don't soak your potatoes, but ensure the soil remains moist. (Sorry to all those of you who dislike the word 'moist', but it does the job!)

    Haxnicks Fleece Jackets

    It will also help to cover your plants with fleece to warm them - there are various fleece jackets available, which pop over the plant very easily - why not choose a decorated one for a bit more colour against the drabness of winter?

    Hope you're enjoying your harvests, long may they last!

    Love to grow!

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