Fletching Glasshouses

One of the delights of social media is that it’s quite easy to incorporate information from one place into another. Our vegetable production arm has its own web site which is all about Organic Vegetables in East Sussex. It has its own blog that updates the details of what’s available when with information about what else is going on at the nursery. So thanks to the wonders of the internet you don’t have to go looking for it – you can find it here.

Why we started the Intelligent Garden

I first started gardening as a research student working on how plants grow. Then we bought a small holding in Shropshire for a while before we discovered computers and marketing. 20 years later we started selling plants on-line.

Expansion meant we needed premises - so we acquired a nursery with 2 acres of glasshouse and started growing organic vegetables again. By September 2008 we had our soil association certification and had started selling biological controls online.

Talking to people on farmer's markets I sense a real hunger for people to garden and produce their own food. And a real interest in local and pesticide free produce.

So we created the Intelligent Garden ito help you get the most from your garden by offering the knowledge, products and advice you need to work effectively with nature to release the intelligence in your garden.

Company Registration 5003969
Vat Registration: 826 8892 74
Reg Office The Glasshouses, Fletching Common, BN84JJ

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Welcome to the Intelligent Garden

Fletching Glasshouses

Fletching Glasshouses

The Intelligent Garden developed from our Organic Nursery at Fletching Glasshouses where we grow organic vegetables, sell plants as gifts on line and supply serious gardeners with organic pest controls and a few other items that we’ve found useful as growers and which will be useful for serious gardeners like yourelf.

If you want better vegetables,  a natural environment or to learn to work with nature in a practical way –  you’ve come home to the right place. You’ll discover how plants grow, what they need and how to make your garden into that vibrant outdoor space you want.

In The Intelligent Garden, Science works with Nature to create a space that gladdens the heart and lifts the soul.

You can enjoy some of our favourite gardens via pictures and videos with the odd recipe to delight the inner man. So join us on this exciting adventure. You can contact us on 0845 094 0407 or 01825 724282 –  Dr Alan Rae – Fletching Glasshouses – 2014

Red Spider Mite Control

Red spider Mite can be a real problem.

These tiny, highly destructive pests are common in greenhouses and on house plants and can also be found on outdoor plants during the warmer summer months. In the greenhouse look out for them on citrus, tomatoes, cucumbers, melons, vines, carnations and chrysanthemums. Outdoors, you may find them on day lilies, gladioli, conifers and many tender plants .

There are some useful predators that can control them if you get to it early enough – Here is a video that tells you all about it

If you want more information or would like to buy some of the predators mentioned you can find all at our Ladybird Plantcare site.

How to control slugs with nematodes

As we go into the Spring, the birds and flowers are starting to wake up.

And so are the slugs.

Here at the glasshouses, we manage them using nematodes.

Nematodes are one of the most abundant creatures in the living soil. They are an essential part of the soil food web. Some of them feed on plants, some feed on dead organic matter, and others are parasites of other living organisms. Just as there are “bad bacteria” and “good bacteria” from the human perspective, so there are “bad nematodes” and “good nematodes” in the soil The nematodes that feed on living plant material can be considered to be “bad nematodes” – eg the potato eelworm. However nematodes that kill other plant pests are considered “good nematodes” – eg the nematode that kills slugs.

Parasitic nematodes seek out suitable hosts by swimming in the thin film of water on soil particles, locating hosts by detecting carbon dioxide and other waste products. Once they find a host, they enter the body cavity through any hole they can find. They carry bacteria which kills the host within hours, and the nematodes grow and reproduce within the ‘broth’, which they produce. The next generation of infective juveniles leaves the dead host, and moves in search of fresh hosts.

Nematodes multiply and spread providing that they have plenty of food, and the soil is warm and wet. The slugs die within a few days, and their bodies decompose underground. I have never actually had the time to go spotting the dead ones – all you get is a decline in damage.

In the glasshouses we get slugs pretty well all year round – they biggest victims are the winter lettuce and pak choi. So we treat in the autumn and early spring – whenever we have time.

The slugs do come back over time – possibly the eggs come in on the compost, possible from the damp areas around the walls, possibly from another area. If we don’t treat regularily,because we don’t have the labour, then this is what we find.

You can buy nematodes in an inert paste which can be mixed with water and poured on the ground with a watering can or hose. You can order them here.

If you would like to know more about this you will enjoy this little video about nematodes and slugs.

 

Job Vacancies

Horticultural Worker needed

To join a small team growing organic vegetables at Fletching Glasshouses. We are soil association accredited and grow a wide variety of crops for the local market.

Full-time Monday to Friday

Seasonal work March to September (with the possibility of an extension into the winter)

Wages £7 / hr , hours 8am to 4pm with some flexibility

Duties: cultivating, planting, weeding and harvesting, with some cleaning, clearing, composting and maintenance.

We are looking for someone with an interest in vegetable growing and a willingness to learn and follow directions. Must be reliable and practical and prepared for hard physical work. Will need to be living within travelling distance from BN8 4JJ

This is a rare opportunity to get experience of organic protected cropping.

Email Isobel@fletchingglasshouses.co.uk for application form or phone Isobel 01825 721162 for more information.

Vacancy on Plants4Presents team

To join a small team growing and packing plants and plant gifts at Fletching Glasshouses. We are a busy mail order business looking for someone to help out in our plant nursery with a range of tasks ‘behind the scenes’.

Seasonal work 1st March to end August full-time Monday to Friday

Wages £7 / hr , hours 8am to 4pm with some flexibility

Duties: watering, sowing, potting on young plants, making up planted baskets, prepping and wrapping plants for despatch

We are looking for someone with an interest in plants and a willingness to learn and follow directions. Must be physically fit, reliable and prepared to ‘muck in’. Will need to be living within travelling distance from BN8 4JJ

This is a great opportunity to work in a friendly team with a varied day to day role

Email emily@4presents.co.uk for application form or phone Emily on 01825 721162 for more information.

Introduction to Organic Pest Control

One of the delights of having a birthday at the back end of February is that you know if you can just grit your teeth and hang on till the critical date then winter will nearly be over.

The light has turned already and things are starting to stir. However, we know that if spring time comes the pests won’t be far behind.

One of the things we’ve been doing here during the winter is going out and giving talks to gardening societies about how to control pests biologically. This means using their natural predators to keep them in balance. As we run a plant nursery specialising in house plants on the one hand and organic vegetables on the other we have a fair amount of experience in managing the attacks of pests like red spider mite, mealy bug, whitefly and of course the inevitable slug.

So the talk is based on our own experiences in controlling them ourselves. We’ve chopped the highlights up into a series of videos – one for each of these major pests.  These combine slides with the chance to see some small videos we’ve taken of some of the pests and their predators in action so that if you’ve never had the chance to see the enemy face to face you can have the chance to get to know them. They’re posted on our  You-tube channel so we thought it would be quite timely to post the series over the next few weeks.

To get you started here’s the introduction video.

Enjoy :)

 

SB Plant Invigorator

SB Plant Invigorator

We use SBI to control and reduce aphids, blackfly, red spider mite, scale insects and mealybug at our nursery at Fletching Glasshouses. We use it almost every other week and wet the plant thoroughly including the undersides of leaves where the aphids and crawlers like to lurk. […]

Garlic Wash - another useful organic pest control product

bottle of garlic wonder garlic wash

We recommend Garlic Wonder for deterring ants and wireworms . It’s also has been reported to reduce aphids, blackfly, carrotfly, red spider mite, scale insects, thrips and whitefly. […]

Horticultural soft soap - a useful pest treatment.

Horticultural Soft Soap

Horticultural Soft soap is a highly refined soap made from natural oils which acts as a contact insecticide with no residual effects once it has dried. It comes as a concentrate and if used at dilution of 30-50 x it will reduce the population and the breeding capabilities of pest […]

Know your pests #1 Red Spider Mite

Amblyseius and Red spider mite

Currently causing problems for our customers is the glasshouse spider mite is known as “Red Spider Mites” they are actually better named “Two Spotted Mites”. When active they are pale greeny-brown in colour and can be recognised by the two 2 dark dots on their backs – they are only red in winter. […]

Biological Pest Control

One of the key principles of the Intelligent Garden is working with nature to control pests. A good way of doing this is to use predators to bring the pests back into balance. For instance we might use nematodes to control slugs and vine weevils or ladybird larvae to eat aphids. […]

Fletching Glasshouses updates

One of the delights of social media is that it’s quite easy to incorporate information from one place into another. Our vegetable production arm has its own web site which is all about Organic Vegetables in East Sussex.

It has its own blog that updates the details of what’s available when with information about what else is going on at the nursery. So thanks to the wonders of the internet you don’t have to go looking for it – you can find it here.

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