London (change)
Today 22°C / 15°C
Tomorrow 20°C / 13°C
6 messages
01/08/2013 at 09:10

Its hot hot hot here 31deg and its times like this that its not always easy to keep the troughs & hanging baskets from drying out,

Here''s a tip that'll help, make ice cubes and put these on the top of the compost in your troughs/baskets,

they'll take longer to melt and by the time they have melted the plants would have used the water rather than the water drying out,

You can also make ice feed cubes and use these the same way,

just freeze tomato mixed fluid feed and then fill the iced cubes and freeze (make sure you mark the ice cube trays your using so they're not mixed up with the forhuman use ones )

Another good idea is to water of an evening, its cooler then and the plants will not dryout over night, then in the morning use the ice cube idea.

01/08/2013 at 10:56

Better to use water retentive granules mixed into the compost from teh start and then water generously in the evening so they can soak up the excess and release it by day.  In very hot or windy spells, water again early morning before going to work or doing other jobs.

Most hanging basket plants are half hardy and aren't going to enjoy being doused with ice cubes although they're better than nothing.


01/08/2013 at 22:56

And most people will have ice in the freezer,

Most people on the O.A.P; income will be able to afford ice but with the cost of living the way it is for a lot of people i'd say ice cubes they can afford and it gives these people a hobby to enjoy at little cost,

The same goes for a lot of handy house hold items to help gardening folk to manage without going to the cost of chemicles etc to fight the verious bacteria & insects from eating their plants, Im talking about washing-up liquid in water that help black fly be delt with "after all a lot of people would chuck the water away after washing the evening dishes, why not chuck it over the bean's etc.

If it's pointed out the use of everyday items people can use i feel it will help more people to enjoy gardening.

The tried & tested ways are well worth pointing out.

02/08/2013 at 09:56

Well, we'll have to agree to disagree.  I don't use any chemicals agains aphids or other pests apart form wildlife friendly pellets for slugs and snails. 

Soapy water is indiscriminate and bad for beneficial insects such as hoverflies and ladybirds which will eat thousands of aphids and maintain a balance if left alone.  I  feed the birds all year and the parents hoover up aphids and caterpillars to feed their young in the nest.   More natural balance.  

02/08/2013 at 10:10

I dunk hanging baskets ina big bucket to give them a good soak.

02/08/2013 at 12:22

Just keep watering in the evening - forgot to put gel crystals in my baskets this year but I'm finding that watering in the evening seems to work OK for them.

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