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Latest posts by blairs

Talkback: Front gardens

Posted: 22/12/2013 at 23:45
oldchippy wrote (see)
if you ever visit any new housing developments you will find the non existence of any front garden,and parking must be provided off road,very soon front gardens will be a thing of the past.

I live on a new development and everyone has sizable front gardens and driveway.

The places where I see most front gardens turned over to a car park is in cities, mostly in poor areas, not suburban housing developments.

Badly explained help!

Posted: 22/12/2013 at 23:42
BobTheGardener wrote (see)


In technical terms, the soil in the pots will radiate heat as infra-red radiation (heat) in all directions.  If a pot is surrounded by other pots, some of this heat will be absorbed by the other pots instead of being lost to the environment.  The effect of this is that (say) 10 pots clustered together will cool down more slowly than 10 pots spaced widely apart, so it is worth doing.

Heat has to come from somewhere though and the soil is not producing heat by itself. If the pots are in shade then there is no heat to radiate.

Sliver Birch question

Posted: 22/12/2013 at 15:24

Birch readily grows from seed and as Nutcutlet has said, look around [in spirng when the leaves are back] as you may already have one or 4.

Badly explained help!

Posted: 19/12/2013 at 18:45
Sue Gough wrote (see)

I ordered some wallflowers online, said they came in a 2litre pot. Which indeed they did, plugs pushed into a pot of compost! From a very well known female TV gardener! Another con.

I had something similar. The plant was in a 1 litre pot and the roots where 9cm pot. It had fallen out and broke in transit because of it...

Badly explained help!

Posted: 19/12/2013 at 17:56

Another common thing I see are online suppliers not giving the plant/pot size supplied. They have pictures of a flowering mature plant in the height of summer. So when people get bare roots or a 9cm pot with a twig in it they feel robbed.

Badly explained help!

Posted: 19/12/2013 at 17:55

Highland Jeannie wrote (see)


Bet it isn't up here, pal!!

I'm very pleased that the RHS have introduced a new hardiness guide - will the plant labelling companies use it??   3 guesses - 1 will do!

I have certainly seen online plants being described as hardy in mild parts of the UK...when you look into it (not on the site selling them) then sheltered, frost free and winter dry is the only way to keep them alive. That rules out everywhere (and yes I know parts of Ireland and the Scillies are very mild but they are also very wet and windy).


Badly explained help!

Posted: 19/12/2013 at 10:36

Like everyone here I always read all the gardening sections of newspapers, online and wherever we find them.

I quite often read the same 'solutions' that are often wrong or badly explained. Can you add that you have found or are just silly?

I will start with 'cluster your pots together during a frost for protection'

Plants do not release heat, so those pots all need to be in sun for a few hours to store any heat to provide any protection. Clustering pots anywhere where the pots themselves are not in sun is wasting your time.

Under trees

Posted: 18/12/2013 at 22:11

"The area is open,about two metres by three and almost 2m (height)clearance but gets almost no sun because of the yew canopy, and the proximity of the (2m close-boarded) school fence"


Ok, I was thinking out of the box and a hardy Agave. Agave americana medio picta alba would actually do OK in a dry spot. It is hardy to -10C and  does not require full sun.

Under trees

Posted: 18/12/2013 at 12:20

How sunny and open is it under the trees?

Which Nerine is this?

Posted: 17/12/2013 at 11:42

I still say Nerine alba - possibly 'Ella K'

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