Adam Pasco

Latest posts by Adam Pasco

Talkback: Spring blossom

Posted: 12/05/2013 at 23:02
Hi Jak, No, I wasn't on this cruise, but hope you can join me on a future one.

Talkback: Spring blossom

Posted: 03/05/2013 at 20:24
Hi Galest.

Wow your plums are early. Which part of teh country do you live?

This sounds like damage from Plum Moth. I'd recommend haning pheromone moth traps in your trees early next year to catch the male moths. It's too late now .... the damage is done.

Dying Off Daffs

Posted: 29/04/2013 at 20:54

Yes, always let bulbs die down naturally, and please don't torture them by tying up their foliage. Some gardeners used to do this to make old foliage look tidier, but just be patient as they're actually feeding teh bulbs that will multiply and build-up to flower is future years.

Like lazy gardener, I alwasy pick off the old faded flower heads to prevent them wasting energy forming seed heads. Just pick off teh head, leaving the stalk to die down in its own time.

However, unlike lazy gardener I prefer drenching soil around clumps of established bulbs with a generous watering can or two of a liquid feed solution, as this gets straight to work. If conditions stay dry there's a chance that pelleted chicken manure will not dissolve and reach the roots, and won't be of any benefit to the bulbs at all.


Talkback: Plant diseases and busy Lizzies

Posted: 19/03/2013 at 20:34
Hi Flowering Rose. Many plant diseases have been 'imported' or have spread to the British Isles in the, including devastating tree diseases.
Downy mildew is a fungus disease, but virus ones can also spread easily in different ways.
I'm not sure where this particular disease came from, but it certainly spread quickly! All we can do is avoid growing problem plants and choose resistant ones instead.

Talkback: Preventing garlic rust

Posted: 18/03/2013 at 20:12
I've just checked, and I think Bumper is a commercial fungicide, so should not be used by amateur gardeners.

Talkback: Preventing garlic rust

Posted: 18/03/2013 at 12:42

No, I haven't heard of that product. Like so many garden chemicals, this one has probably been withdrawn from the market. Only a very few remain, which is why it's so important for gardeners to look for cultural ways to avoid/control problems, and choose resistant varieties where possible.

However, I'm not aware of any varieties of garlic that are resistant to garlic rust. Perhaps the weather won't be so wet this year, and the garlic will grow well. Fingers crossed!

Talkback: Early seed sowing

Posted: 26/02/2013 at 13:38

Hi ballydavis. The disease that has affected Busy Lizzies over teh past few years is a fungus called Downy Mildew. I'll be posting a blog about this soon, so watch this space!

And I agree with other posts that you should be cautious not to sow too early. Conditions have been cold and dull so far this year, and seeds and seedlings need he complete opposite to grow and flourish. A heated propagator might help seeds germinate from early sowings, but unless you have lighting units over them the seedlings will grow weak and lankly in dull conditions.

It's surprising how quickly things improve during March, so get everything ready to start seed sowing in earnest later in March for those tender greenhouse crops. I can't wait!

how to grow cucumber seed

Posted: 18/02/2013 at 11:25

Hi Cody Smith. Where are you going to grow your cucumbers? Are they indoors in a greenhouse, or ridge varieties to grow outside?

If choosing varieties for the greenhouse then from experience I now only grow varieties that claim to be tolerant to or show reistance to powdery mildew, like 'Tiffany' and 'Carmen'. Personally I no longer risk growing older varieties that do not offer resistance, as I've lost entire plants to this disease in the past. I certainly don't want to be spraying crops against disease, but actually I don't think there are any good fungicides to use in any case.

As well as the sowing instructions others have given do remember that cucumbers must have warmth and very good light (full light but not scorching sunlight). You must be able to maintain a temperature of around 20??C (68??F) for germination, and seedlings need a minimum night temperature of around 16??C (60??F). For me that means I need an electric propagator, as I can't afford to heat the entire greenhouse.

Poor light results in very drawn, lanky seedlings, so I'd probably wait for a couple more weeks until light levels improve before sowing, unless you have a lighting unit to place over your propagator.


Talkback: Planting to cut winter fuel bills

Posted: 07/02/2013 at 10:05
Interesting thoughts Gardening Grandma. There are several different ideas and issues wrapped up together here, so in addition to understanding the physics involved in insulation/wind chill/draft proofing/heat transfer/summer cooling/shading/etc there are many practical considerations to take on board.

In many situations our properties benefit from the warmth direct sunshine provides, warming brick walls, or solar panels on the roof to warm water or produce electricity.

We know building construction also plays a part in controlling warming/cooling, from building a entry porch before getting to the front door to having a conservatory or lean-to against the property, double glazing, cavity wall insulation, and so on.

So, moving beyond the construction of the house, and the costs involved improving their insulation/heat loss and so on, it would be interesting to see more research on the influence of the outside environment, including our gardens, on our homes.

Talkback: Planting to cut winter fuel bills

Posted: 04/02/2013 at 20:41
Yes, I agree, oldchippy. It makes sense, doesn't it. We know that hedges, fences and walls protect us from high wind, although this affect only works for a certain distance from the fence (the distance depends on its height). Turbulence is created the further away you move.

Plants surrounding a property must help reduce the strength of cooling winds in winter, and also produce shade that helps cool warm air in summer.

It would be interesting to find out by how much we could all cut down on heat loss, and calculate the saving on fuel bills. Now that would provide a very good incentive for people to plant more. Perhaps the Government would then promote this, or even subsidise people who create gardens. Well that's a thought!

Discussions started by Adam Pasco

Talkback: Christmas chilli

I've just found a recipe for Brussels sprouts with chilli, garlic and lemon. Has anyone tried it? 
Replies: 1    Views: 819
Last Post: 06/02/2014 at 17:10

New flowers to recommend

Can you recommend a new variety of flowering plant to others? 
Replies: 13    Views: 3962
Last Post: 25/10/2012 at 10:39

Talkback: Glow-worms

Now that's one creature I've never had the pleasure of discovering. How exciting. I've stood for many an hour in the past looking upwards i... 
Replies: 6    Views: 1376
Last Post: 21/08/2012 at 21:50

Talkback: Feeding garden birds

Good advice, Kate. And it's not just bird feeders that must be kept clean, but bird baths too. Possibly it's even more important to keep bir... 
Replies: 2    Views: 1061
Last Post: 09/02/2012 at 20:15
4 threads returned