9 January - Seed Sowing off to an Early Start

Today was the first time I got chance to spend in the garden this year and whilst the weather stayed dry in the main, the only task I got done outside was turning the compost heap!
The real task for the day was to get started on sowing seeds for the year ahead. As the ground is generally wet and cold I decided to sow a batch of broad beans "Aquadulce Claudia" into individual pots.  Had I sown these direct into the soil, they probably would have sulked and eventually rotted off. These will be left in the cold greenhouse to germinate and grow on for planting out later in March.
Last year was not a good year for our tomatoes and it seems that other people were in a similar position. I got fewer trusses and later ripening of the fruits. This may have been in part to the fact that I had sown the seed later than usual, so this year I am getting started early again. I am trying two varieties that are new to me, "Big Mama" and "Tangerine", so we will see how we get on.
Another crop that I grow every year without a lot of success are peppers. I think that the problem I have is that the growing season is just not long enough here. I would probably be best ordering small plants and growing them on, but that kind of takes the fun out of it a little for me. So not to be beaten, I am trying again this year, starting now! I will be growing Pepper "Topepo Rosso" and Chilli "Trinidad Perfume".
In respect of the garden, rather than the veg plot, I have some seeds that are now out of date according to the packet, but I have decided to see if any will still germinate. These are Gaura Lindheimeri "The Bride" and some Giant Scabious. If these do germinate and I get several plants I am not sure I have any room in my garden, but I am certain someone will take them off my hands.