The Growers Diaries: Growers

The Growers Diaries: Medwyn Williams

Medwyn Williams

Medwyn is a Welsh champion of exceptional gardening practices, all managed from his picturesque plot of farmland on the beautiful island of Anglesey.

Proudest accolade 12 times Chelsea Gold Winner
Growing Since Childhood
Favourite plant to grow Leeks
Biggest learning curve Planting dates for show time

This season for me hasn´t really been affected by the Coronvairus pandemic, only the varied weather throughout spring so far. Some days it has been overly wet, some days bitterly cold and others sunshine. The cold weather has been challenging for planting.

Chelsea Flower Show is still my goal this year and I am hoping to add to my 12 Chelsea Gold medals! I always want to put quality vegetables on show to create a stunning 25ft display which takes some doing. Working with nature and trying to push it to its limits is great, though sometimes it does come back and kick you in the teeth and Chelsea this year has been rescheduled to later in the year.

This month I am potting up my tomatoes into 9cm pots, though for anyone planting – always plant them as deep as you can! The little hair roots on the stem are called adventitious roots which will develop into proper roots to get a stronger plant to carry on with. Once they get some warmth they will romp away! Tomatoes do need a bit of space so spread them out if you have the room for them.

There is no way I could have done this without my wife Gwenda supporting me and my son Alwyn who has come into join me more.

Going into my 80th year, I have no plans to stop! Growing keeps me active and gets me out of the house, whats the point in stopping? I´m enjoying it!

The last month has been difficult. The drop in overnight temperatures has given me problems, the main one being that some of my blanche leeks have bolted.

I have five barrels of my own long black beets, a very old variety, that can grow up to 4-5ft long! These were only sewn the 10th May and they have already thinned out to two in each station and there is four stations in each barrel – perfect timing for the end of September.

I have had it up to my eyes with rabbits and carrotfly, this mesh caging is to prevent pests getting to my 150 odd short carrots. If they grow to my expectations without flies and rabbits affecting them, we should have some nice results.

Next month is going to be a bit of a peak as 50% of the display stand is to be sewn and planted up, the last thing to be sewn will be the radish. These will be 5 weeks or so before the RHS Chelsea Flower Show in September.

I have temperatures to put up with so constant watering and monitoring, someone told me we are going to have a hot summer so I better have a tub of water just for me to dive into.

It is amazing how resilient plants can be, as long as they get water and nutrients around their roots – they will grow.

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