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As I walked to work this morning (more car trouble) I am certainly aware of the change in temperature, its has become a bit on the chilly side. As the plant growth that I had hoped for at the beginning of the season now slows and stops I think about the plans I had for my trees and if they or I achieved the goals I had set for us both.

Usually not.

Despite the considerably better summer that we had, especially “up north” there is some equipment I used and continue to use throughout the year and thats growlights.

A good number of imported species commonly used in shohin thrive in the UK, A couple do not. These are generally requiring a longer warmer summer. This is where my light boxes come in.

light boxMade from polystyrene packaging boxes that have had holes stabbed in them for drainage and them a layer of fine molar, biosorb or whatever in the bottom. The growlight that I use is a lightwave one (other brands are available). Its places in my tunnel and electrics are away from any water.

Despite the weather I find this an indispensable set up especially for species that are “struggling”, a bit weaker or need warmer weather. In the box I currently have Chojubai (Jap Quince), Kinzu (kumquat) and chririmenkazura (star jasmin). New growth, budding and better colour are evident very quickly after being place  in the box.

In the winter months the system will still be used but for evergreen species to keep them strong and to get them started early. Note that I do not use any heating, I find the insulating material and the light enough.

So if there are a few species that are stuggling for you, show them the light.




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