Friday 22 September 2017

Ask Marie

Marie Staunton

What is the best herb to grow to attract bees into the garden?

Nearly all herbs are good at attracting insects, including bees, but thyme, borage, hyssop and lavender in particular seem to attract bees in their droves.

I am going to be doing a piece on creating a herb garden in a couple of weeks, but in the meantime you could look out for seeds and perhaps select a sunny part of the garden that would accommodate a herb bed.

It doesn't have to be very big, as long as it gets full sun. You can grow herbs as part of a mixed border if space is limited.

My tomatoes are still green and don't seem to be ripening at all. Should I take them off the plant and put them on a windowsill?

You could bring them in and place them in a paper bag to ripen them up quickly. I would be inclined to leave them on the plant and take off some of the lower leaves to let more light in. An over-ripe banana placed beside the plant will also speed things up a bit.

If they still aren't ripe by the time frost is forecast, lift the whole plant out of the ground, shake off the soil and hang it upside down in the garage to ripen up.

Irish Independent

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