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Latest posts by biofreak

Asparagus Crowns

Posted: 02/11/2014 at 10:33

I dug my asparagus bed up yesterday as wanted to see what was going  on following miserable crop despite 4yrs old - Found 7 giant crowns like you and lots of miserable spindles. realised that these were my efforts at growing from splitting - As crops marked by Bean sticks had been from giants specimans. I would recommend buying in new stock instead. Seems a long wait from smaller plants grown oneself.

Gardening by the Moon

Posted: 02/11/2014 at 10:22

Buried myself indoors this morning as high winds and lashing rain. So glad I spent last 2 summery days gardening. Thrilled Broad Beans and Spring onions have sprouted in greenhouse (on top of staging and netted well away from hungry voles!) Dug up asparagus bed yesterday as fed up with it - Threw away weedy specimens and replanted 7 giant survivors in a square plot and closer together (I know this is not the classic method but tryining it out to save space and open up more land for veg)

Here is the Lunar Calender 1-17th November.

1st Nov - Root Day Sow short carrots and radishes under cloches

2nd Nov - Flower Day In mild regions prune hydrangeas and cut out old wood.

3/4/5th Nov - Leaf Days On 3rd No gardening before 5.30am (As if we would!) Harvest lambs lettuce/spinach/lettuce and if you have had a frost the first Brussel Sprouts (Think this must have been written assuming that we are all freezing during a normal November!) Cut down Tarragon and cover with leaf mould.

6//7th Nov - Fruit Days If you have olives (possible but not likely in UK ) after they have dropped take them to your local mill to extract the oil (Inserted this piece as felt it would be interesting for you to see what we get up to in France! -Store apples in dry and airy place checking regularly for one's 'going over' or bruised.

8/9/10th Nov - Root Days Benefit from this quiet period to make a list of your successes and failures and plan ahead for next year. Take particular note of soil tests results after the growing season to note what nutrition/fertilizers you may need to add to boost next year's crops.

11/12 Nov - Flower Days After the first frosts cut down and lift Begonias/Dahlias/Cannas and Gladioli. Bring them in and store upside down in a cool dark dry place with air circulating between tubers/bulbs.Dig up and throw away annuals. Plant potted clematis. Plant Day Lilies and Paonies.

13th Nov - Leaf Day Blanch Endive/Cardoons and Celery. Wash off dandelions and cover with cloches for tasty winter salads.

14th-17th Nov - Fruit Days No gardening before 6am on the 15th. Otherwise if it is not frosty Plant bare root fruit trees, enriching the ground with compost and bonemeal. Stake well against winter winds, water well with 2 watering cans full of rainwater in preference to tap water. When leaves have fallen from fruit trees spray with Bordeaux Mixture to protect against winter bacteria and insect attack. Take cuttings from Figs by cutting off an 8-10inch (20-30cm) piece of woody stem and put a cross in the bottom before potting up in sand and compost and place against a north facing wall. (Sorry don't know why Does anyone know?) Earth up Broad Beans sown 9-10th October to protect against root rock)

Well there we are - How have you got on this year. How were the harvests - Any different to standard gardening? I shall continue Calender into Feb 2015 as promised but it would be interesting to see how many people felt a benefit using the Lunar Calender. I definately have found it strange how dates have tallied with sowing and sprouting plus planting out, but I cannot honestly say that my crops have been better so far. Year 3 will give me a better picture I think. Happy Gardening.

Gardening by the Moon

Posted: 20/10/2014 at 16:57

Just returned from UK clutching a new fork and shovel plus a packet of Broad beans. None of these items available here! Following quick inspection of potager and greenhouse remembered had to write Calender! Have just sown Rye as green manure and agree all brassicas doing really well obelixx

Lunar Calender 20-30th October

20th October Fruit Day - Plant out pot grown fruit, and chop off spent strawberry leaves and burn them to avoid spreading any diseases. Treat pruned trees and raspberry canes with Bordeaux Mixture to protect cut surfaces.

21/22/23 (No gardening 23rd)/24 October Root Days - Plant Shallots and gather roots that don't like cold and wet weather. Protect other root crops with fleece or cloches. Thin carrots sown 3/4th October. Plant out onions sown 6/7th September

25th October - Flower Day Plant out pansies and violas sown 11/12th August Finish planting out shrubs and perennials sold in containers. Cut down Begonias/cannas/dahlias and gladioli if they are dying back.

26/27th October Leaf Days - Plant chicory roots and cover them with straw or black plastic to blanche.

28/29th October Fruit Days - In mild regions sow dwarf peas (not wrinkled varieties) and Mange tous. (Think this is very optimistic in UK but who knows with this wonderful weather that we are having - I think I'll sow some in the greenhouse to go with the broad beans that I bought back from UK yesterday)

30/31st October Root Days - Sow Root Chervil and cover lightly with soil, thin out when they have 4-5 leaves.


There we are - Happy Gardening and happy Halloween!


Greenhouse in Winter

Posted: 04/10/2014 at 17:04

Apparently the voles in the front garden are tastier than in the back, many heads found in middle of kitchen floor each morning! Cats need to have a sense of direction!

Just a footnote on original question - I do not want to grow lettuce. Can I grow Broad Beans/Peas?

Figs in Pots & Mulberries

Posted: 04/10/2014 at 17:01

Did you mix it with garden soil or use it neat? Coming to UK next week, so would like to buy right thing.

Can indoor Azaleas 'become' outdoor Azaleas

Posted: 04/10/2014 at 16:59

If you received azalea as a present from someone who bought it in a supermarket as opposed to nursery, I find that they just aren't hardy enough to put outside and just keel over and die. Florist or Nursery presents seem to fair better, I assume because they have had a better start. Just a shame they all seem to be pink /red or white!

Autumn raspberries - will they need staking?

Posted: 04/10/2014 at 16:54

I don't touch the Autumn ones until the Spring then I just cut out the old growth, leaving the pale green stems to crop again. I have never staked them as they seem to form natural bushes - Do have trouble with suckers though turning up all over the veg plot instead of staying close to Mum or Dad on the edge. I have grubbed these out and planted them elsewhere or given them to friends.


Posted: 04/10/2014 at 16:51

I have decided to move my strawberries and replace them by moving the gooseberries away from where they had sawfly this year, and planting them in the ex-strawberry bed. How do I stop sawfly coming back - will they move with the bushes. Should I treat them now or wait until the spring? All ideas welcome.

Figs in Pots & Mulberries

Posted: 04/10/2014 at 16:48

I have just bought my first Pot grown Fig Tree and want to plant it in a giant pot on a South facing wall. It is covered in fruit which I gather that I do not touch. A superb open bush at the moment and I have no idea what mix of soil I should put in new container. I believe it thrives in poor sandy soil - Do I add compost or John Innes or nothing?? It's a super speciman 'Rouge de Bordeaux' and I want to give it the best start. Also I would like to buy a Mulberry Tree - Are they worth it, or do they take years to fruit? I remember the fruit as a child and it is a secret ambition to grow my own.

Catnip (Nepeta cataria)

Posted: 04/10/2014 at 16:39

Hope you haven't got a Tom Cat - He will eat every scrap and p--- on the roots effectively killing the poor plant! I find my catnip self seeds very well, especially of you do not cut it back in Winter.Boots the Bengal loves leaves rubbed on his fur, keeps him happy for hours washing!! - Whereas Gingerman thinks it is revolting stuff and won't go near.

Discussions started by biofreak


Slug deterrant? 
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Last Post: 28/02/2015 at 18:13

Lost Seed Order!!

Has anyone else lost their's in transit? 
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Cucumber Frames

How do I make maximum Use of one? 
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How to get rid of Gorse

Roadside problem 
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Last Post: 10/02/2015 at 11:35

Are Gardening Magazines Overseas related to UK?

Carol Klein & Alan Titchmarsh in France 
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Last Post: 03/02/2015 at 14:50

Old Wive's Tales/Tips and Wrinkles

True or False? 
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Last Post: 03/02/2015 at 14:29

Moving gooseberries

Will sawfly move too? 
Replies: 14    Views: 678
Last Post: 19/01/2015 at 07:57

Swiss Chard

New veg to try? 
Replies: 20    Views: 641
Last Post: 18/01/2015 at 15:48

Biodynamic Gardening

Has anyone tried it? 
Replies: 21    Views: 600
Last Post: 24/02/2015 at 14:58


Moving Gooseberries 
Replies: 1    Views: 220
Last Post: 04/10/2014 at 18:13

Figs in Pots & Mulberries

What Soil? 
Replies: 4    Views: 262
Last Post: 04/10/2014 at 18:51

Greenhouse in Winter

What to plant/sow now 
Replies: 11    Views: 773
Last Post: 10/02/2015 at 02:35


Replies: 11    Views: 411
Last Post: 19/06/2014 at 18:43

Insect Eating Plants

What soil to use 
Replies: 11    Views: 443
Last Post: 25/06/2014 at 11:39

Peach leaf Curl

Will fruit hold? 
Replies: 6    Views: 411
Last Post: 03/02/2015 at 17:43
1 to 15 of 40 threads