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We moved here two years ago - before that we spent a few years in a city Victorian terrace with a tiny north-facing garden just like your daughter's - it can be a challenge but we grew runner beans, strawberries, courgettes, tomatoes, salads and herbs, as well as climbing and rambling roses, clematis, foxgloves, astrantias, honeysuckles, ferns and lily of the valley amongst other things - and we had a tiny pond which the frogs found 

As I said it was a challenge, and after a while I was desperate to move here to a bigger garden, but I did love that little patch 


Hi All

Just thought I'd say hi ... I'm new here and it seems only polite to introduce myself before I start pumping you all for info, advice, inspiration, and maybe some hand holding when things get tough.

So, hi.  I'm Steph.  Pleased to be here. 

I previously had a courtyard type, container garden, for about 10 years - it did quite well, tho more by luck than judgement I have to say.  I've also been an armchair gardener (TV and mags) for years, and now I have my very own real garden!

In fact I have two ... eeek!

Front garden - small but very sunny and often windy.  Currently a small lawn, small patio area and two small borders - neglected.  Plan = not a clue yet.

Back garden - odd shaped, neglected, basically a deciduous woodland, lots of tree roots in the erm, 'lawn', whichis a bit boggy in places.  I'm told there is not a great deal of soil, but what would I know??  It's acidic, I think, because I've got a few acid lovers that seem to be thriving - ie they are  totally overgrown.  It needs patios sorting, a new base for the shed, and one for my new greenhouse (purchased second hand and needs putting back together ... eeek again).  Also, it needs paths putting in, and seating areas, some parts even need excavating!  Plan = BIG.


So, as I said, I'm probably going to need some support with my new adventure, so I imagine I'll be around a fair bit.  Looking forward to meeting you all in due course.

Thanks- Steph  



Perhaps I too should introduce myself, although I have been seeking advice in the veg and fruit thread for a little while.

During the war when I was very tiny I was sent to a progressive co-ed school called Long Dene which was housed in Chiddingstone Castle;  which is now one of the gardens you can get two for one tickets for.  I was taught gardening at that school (and not much else), we grew all the vegetables possible and ate all of them, except the potatoes, raw.  I have loved gardening ever since, where ever I have lived I have created some kind of garden with space for fruit and veg, even if grown on a tiny patio or balcony, in containers.  I lived in Indiana USA for ten years, gardening there was a real challenge with winters that got 22 below freezing and summers that got up to 40 frequently and  with unbearable humidity. Basil grew 4' tall lush and rampant, no stopping it; likewise Busy Lizzies self seeding coming back each year bigger and higher than the year before.

Now I live in East Sussex and have lovely manageable garden, half of which is a kitchen garden where I grow all the vegetables to supply two of my children and their families' who live near by. This makes me a very happy and active grandmother who is still learning more and more how to garden!    

I have been reading a great book called the kitchen herb garden by Maureen little, it has great advice on planting herbs, recipes and ways of storing them-a good read! this weekend will be spent dismantling my garden fences here in Devon which have been hit by these strong winds! anyone else's garden more water than soil right now?

Steve 309

Hello everyone

I too have been here for a week or two, but only just found this thread,  So hello

I help with three gardens (beside my own pathetic little back yard); I get paid (till they find out I really don't know all that much) to run one at a sort of hostel for homeless/recovering addicts/ex-offenders and try (ha ha) to get them involved; I also help with the garden at a one-man monastery (don't ask) and have my own (sort of) allotment on the same site.

My background is in Biology but mostly not botany so although I know some of the theory it doesn't often help much!

There's not a lot nicer (is there?) than coming home with a bunch of stuff you've just harvested and turning it into a meal!  Unless it's eating a ripe strawberry straight off the plant......

Anyway, here I am and I shall be asking for advice (and no doubt dispensing some of dubious value) until I find something better to do.  Seems like a nice place so far!


Steve 309
Jumbo56 wrote (see) other query is that my hubby refuses to change from Tetley teabags, which I find annoyingly uncompostable, and have resorted to taking the one worm from each bag, and putting the composted tea in the compost and throwing the bag away.  Does anyone else have problems with tea bags, or is it something peculiar to my compost?

 I've had this too.  Some types are obviously made of plastic, others of paper.  I s'pose you just have to keep trying till you find ones that rot.  If you're reduced to tearing open teabags to get at the compost I think you need another source of compost material!

Very useful book for Herb Identification  = The Illustrated Book Of Herbs - Their Medicinal and Culinary Uses. - Over 250 species illustrated in full colour. - Edited by sarah Bunney ,published by Octopus Books Ltd.

Good Morning Gardeners

I have just joined today and look forward to picking up lots of useful tips from the experienced amongst you.

Best wishes


Hello pandora 

Hi Pandora33. Welcome to the forum.


Can any1 tell me how to stop my dog going on my garden ??



Well that is a hard one, first of all dogs love to play and rummage maybe you should have one area for the dog to go to Fenced off with a gate, train him or her to use that area but if you mean the dog is fouling the area well that's simple either put in a dog loo and train it to use it , or take him or her out at regular intervals you will get to know when the dog generally does their business so you take it out just before he does it
they learn very quickly. However if the dog is doing thing like digging holes or plants up you can try this method, get a small tin with a seal able lid put a few screws or nails into it, make sure it rattles when shook. seal the lid so it does not come free.

when you see the dog doing something you dislike or doing wrong throw the tin

towards the dog so it lands beside the dog and shout firmly the dogs name and say with a commanding voice no  your dog will get use to it and will stop doing what ever you do not want him to do . DO NOT THROW IT TO HIT THE DOG.

I trained my German Shepperd and a staffy and have no problems once they got to learn no means no. 



Thanx chris25  I'll try the tin as my dog not  fouling just digging 

joyce mannell

Do anyone want any aquilegia seeds its the common lilac one

joyce mannell

I posted a message in the potting shed to give away aqualigia seeds doesnt anyone want them


Joyce, I think you should start a new thread for your question. No one will know otherwise. This is a very old thread and some of the people on it are no longer here and the title doesn't mention aquilegia seeds.