Plant News===Witchcraft

Knowing about my travails with germination and keeping alive, Ed, a commenter who does not live far away from me, has come to my rescue. He has given me 12 plants. I have been amazed at how well developed his plants are. He tells me that he has been gardening for 30 years, so I guess that he knows what he is doing! Even so, to go from seed to big-ish plants since March is some going. You can see his plants in his comment on my last post.

I planted out those plants a couple of days ago. Here is a pic:

2015-06-09 18.19.49

Those plants consist of several different varieties – Yellow twist bud, Monte calme yellow, Silver river, Vesta 64 and Golden burley. I have a diagram showing where each variety is planted. For example, the bunchy plant in the middle bottom of the pic is Golden Burley.

Ed gave me three plants named ‘Golden Virginia’. I have separated them because they are the same variety (I think!) as the plants which I have been growing for the last three years. I am assuming that ‘Virginia Gold’ is the same variety as ‘Golden Virginia’. Here is a pic:

2015-06-09 18.20.16

It is generally not a good idea to allow plants to cross-pollinate. That would happen if bees move from one plant to another, transferring pollen from one variety to another. This has been a well-known problem since forever, but there is a solution, which is called ‘bagging’. When the flowers emerge, put a bag over them to stop bees getting to them. Or, if you do not want to get the seeds from certain varieties, simply nip the buds of those varieties before they can flower.

The first pic is plot 2. The second is plot 1. I had already planted out some puny plantlets of my own (those on the right of the pic). Since planting Ed’s plants, I have also planted out some more of my own offerings (those which are in the damp-looking ground):

2015-06-09 18.20.50

You can see Ed’s plants right at the back of the plot (top left of pic). You can just about see my own plants inside the bottles. Oh, the shame! You can also see that there is room for some more plants.

The good news is that the tiny plantlets which I planted out about five days ago seem to be ‘settling in’. There is still room for another few plants and I have some developing. Another few days, and the plots should be full.

Then we wait. We protect them from slugs and snails as best we can. My protection involves my ‘slug deterrent moats:

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and slug pellets. Slugs cannot swim. The white plastic things are moats full of water. Slugs and snails really, really are your worst enemy. They emerge from their hiding places in the dark of the night, munch your plants, and then sneak off before daybreak. Kill them. They serve no useful purpose.


It is difficult not to see conspiratorial actions within government and in surrounding NGOs. For example, the Welsh Assembly Health Minister shouts very loudly that he is going to ban vaping in enclosed places. It grabs the headlines, even though it is silly and a BMA spokesperson makes fool of himself. A day or two later, the Royal College of Physicians Tobacco Control Gang, using its front group, ASH, unveils its plans to ratchet up the persecution of people who enjoy tobacco. The main demands are:

1. Increase tobacco duty each year by 5% per an.

2. Introduce a ‘levy’ on tobacco companies equivalent to 25p per pack of 20.

3. Ban smoking in certain outdoor places.

4. Ban smoking in cars whether there are children present or not.

There are others, but those are the important ones.

You can see that without doubt these demands are intended to punish smokers. They have almost nothing to do with children, even when the word ‘children’ is involved.

It seems that the Conservative Party has become a weed. The only difference between Labour and the Tories is which is more weedy. Neither of them are pretty rose bushes or apple trees or even potato tubers.


Is there an answer? I think that there is, but only in a vague way. There needs to be a diminution of the costs of anti-smoking zealotry. The Zealots would say that the cost are by far repaid by the savings in NHS costs. But is that true? I have not seen any stats which support such a contention. If fact, it seems to me that the healthier people are, day by day, during their working lives, the more unhealthy they are at the end of their lives.

Is that true? Where are the studies concerned with it? For example, it is almost certain that desk jobs promote obesity, whereas physical jobs promote slimness. Desk workers must starve themselves, but physical workers can stuff their faces. It is erroneous to believe that EVERYONE must conform to a ‘one size fit all’ paradigm. Thus, food companies must be allowed to do business without political mumbo-jumbo interference.

Almost all political interference is ‘mumbo-jumbo’. Almost all political interference is witchcraft. Since the EU was created, the witchcraft has multiplied. Incantations (aka publicity and propaganda) rule. The Gods live on Mount Olympus. Sacred alters exist in committee rooms.

What needs to change has little to do with the EU directly. What needs to change is the ‘ethos’ in the Westminster bubble. All Brits want to cooperate with our European neighbours. We are all equal.  Colour of skin is does not matter, nor does place of origin. What matters is the very inequalities that the EU has created.


I do not detest the EU. I detest what it has become. The Tobacco Products initiative illustrates precisely the stupidity of the whole thing. Minor matters, such as enjoying tobacco, have wasted billions of euros.

Slow the whole process down. Cut the bureaucracy. Feel your way to unification.


4 Responses to “Plant News===Witchcraft”

  1. J Brown Says:

    Just a comment about our friend, the slug. While they cannot swim, they can hold their breath for an amazingly long time. Some years ago, I decided to pick the slugs in my garden – I put them in a bucket filled with water, where they dropped to the bottom, and stood there, watching them slowly move toward the side of the bucket, and climb their way out of it. It took a 55 gallon drum for this method to be effective – it was only this huge drum that they couldn’t get out of. I have tried all sorts of things with them, the copper bands, the beer, etc. Funnily enough, what actually worked and kept them away from my plants, was….to feed them. I put small bowls of moistened cat nuts out in shallow trays, at the perimeter of my plant beds. The slugs went for the trays, rather than the plants….

    • junican Says:

      I’ve found that the slug pellets are pretty effective, even on the baby ones. Mind you, all I am judging on is the slime-trails. The reason for the moats is to limit access points to the land bridges between the moats. Would a slug or snail deliberately go into the water and cross the moat? I don’t know, although I doubt it. I sprinkle more pellets at those access points.
      I’ve just been outside with my torch. I noticed earlier that a couple of leaves seem to nave been chewed. I found one small slug under each of those leaves. I’ve put a few slug pellets near them. I an hour or so, I’ll pop out again and take a look at what has happened.
      Do I take it that ‘cat nuts’ are cat biscuits? I haven’t heard of cat nuts before.
      I really ought not to have much trouble with slugs and snails this year because, as a result of the delay, the plots have lain bare and dry, so I would have thought that any eggs should have hatched by now and the slugs headed off towards places were there is lots of foliage.

  2. smokingscot Says:

    My main concern is what they want to use the money for:

    “Improve national surveillance to ensure that timely and robust data… etc) (1.5)


    the whole of 1.6

    1.6 is the most insidious because it will lead to smoking alone as the presumed reason for death.

    Give this lot any information and it’ll be twisted.

    • junican Says:

      I’ve already seen that link a couple of times!
      It looks to me as though they want to ensure that they have some work to do. The ‘end game’ looks more and more like it is the end game for tobacco control, at least in the UK and Ireland.
      How many women are pregnant at any given time? The birthrate in England and Wales is around 700,000 per an. So, out of a total adult population of 40,000,000, ASH want to keep tabs on 700,000 per an. Also, how many of those women will be smokers? At a guess, I would say about 120,000. How many gays are there? 4%? The total of the adult population would be about 1,600,000, meaning about 800,000 smokers if the figure of 50% of gays are smokers is correct. But, like pregnant women, they are spread out all over the country. What information would they want and what would they do with it?
      As regards death certificates. I cannot see coroners wearing it. A person dies from lung cancer? That’s the end of it, isn’t it? What more can a doctor say, and what does it matter? The person is dead.

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