Picture of Medwyn Williams

Medwyn Williams

Hello. I'm Medwyn Williams – eleven times Gold medal winner at the Chelsea Flower Show, Past Chairman of the Royal Horticultural Society Fruit Vegetable and Herb Committee and President of the National Vegetable Society.

Watering Cans and Leeks


Perhaps you would like to check out three new additions to our Sundry list on our on line shop. They are watering cans in 3, 5 and 8 litre capacity. Item 0086, Item 0087 and Item 0088. They are galvanised and painted over in green and the 8 litre can has a very fine fitted mesh on top of the filling aperture to prevent any dirt or grit getting in and blocking the rose.  These are brand new on the market and in my opinion superb value for money. They are lightweight and well balanced with the 3 litre can being perfect for light greenhouse work.

Last Thursday whilst at the University glasshouse in Aber I decided to change the 9 inch collars on my Pendle Improved leeks and extend them to 12 inches.  I was very surprised to see that the button was nearly level with the top of the collar and the root plate is approximately an inch below the compost surface.  This of course means that the blanch is already at around 10 inches in length which is much longer than I first thought.

The collars are made from a bubble like material around quarter of an inch thick with one side silvered.  I cut the collar to measure 12 inches by 15 inches so that at the next stage I can simply remove the collar and roll it up in the opposite direction to give me a height of 15 inches. I had about three rolls of this material kindly given to me and as far as I am aware they are used in the construction industry as a form of insulation material.  I don’t their cheap but they will last for years, particularly if you plan ahead and cut them to the correct sizes so that one piece will give you two lifts on the button.

The beauty of them is that they are quite rigid and the silver side facing outwards to reflect the light from the barrel helps keep the leek cool. I have used this on my celery as well with equal success.

Silvered bubble material for collaring cut to 9×15 inch
19 Leeks Pendle Improved all collared with 12 inch collars 310113
Leek Pendle on 12 silvered collar 310113
Leek pendle imp on 9 inch collar with button showing 310113


Leek pendle showing lift between flags with 10p in front on 9 inch collar removal





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6 thoughts on “Watering Cans and Leeks

  1. Hello,
    Medwyn the leeks look great.They are thickening up well.

  2. Hi Medwyn, you can get the silver bubble stuff from most DIY shops. I get mine from B & Q, it’s about 11 quid a roll.


    1. Thanks Marcus for that information.

  3. What on Earth have they done to Garden News Medwyn? New format looks awful.

    And why is your column no longer in Kitchen Garden?

    I’m not a happy bunny!

    1. The jury is out as regards myself with the new format of Garden News, it might grow on us if you excuse the pun! I think the main reason, as regards the publisher, is the fact that it will now sit on the magazine shelves in shops etc with all the other gardening publications rather than being usually on the bottom shelf mixed up with other newspapers. Regarding Kitchen Garden, I was told that there was to be a change to the format of the magazine etc etc so I was not re commissioned. Drop a line to Steve Ott the Editor if you feel aggrieved!

  4. Already made contact with Steve Ott and got the same guff you were spouted. Never buying it again!

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