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Latest posts by blairs

What to sow in January

Posted: 03/01/2013 at 11:46

I agree with Sotongeoff. The sunlight is just not enough yet and you will end up with leggy plants. The only seeds to germinate now are those difficult or lengthy ones such as Banana/musa, perhaps Canna etc.


Posted: 03/01/2013 at 10:15

You do not cut back 2 year old whips. Let them grow for a season or so and then remove the leader so that the hedge fills outwards and not upwards. You will put the hedge back 2 years by cutting them down now to 9''. You only prune down if restoring a hedge, doing so now to a plant with little roots is stupid.



Posted: 01/01/2013 at 13:46

Viburnam beetle and larvae shreds the leaves like Snails do. If it is wedges cut out of the sides of the leaves then it may be Vine Weevil.

new years resolution

Posted: 31/12/2012 at 21:21

@ Jackie Frost - am only going to grow from seed this year. Have various Musa on the go at the moment and in April Cosmos, Canna, Gunnera, Ginger Lilly, Colcasia and a few other hardy (ish) tropicals.


I moved into a new garden and had to buy lots of structural plants, wind breaks etc. I also planted an 80 metre wildlife hedge down the side of my house!

Watterlogged soil, everything rotting

Posted: 31/12/2012 at 21:17
blueberry77 wrote (see)

Thanks for the suggestions. It's not a big space and I like to grow mostly veg, herbs, cottage garden flowers. There is a very slight slope so maybe I should just write off the end where it has puddled the worst.

Would it help if I put a load of straw down to soak up the water at the wettest part - then compost the straw when it starts to rot down ?

Build raised beds. It will not solve the drainage issues but will help the veg, herbs and flowers etc to grow as their roots are raised out of the worst. I use old pallets, stain them and they are strong and as you add soil it works well and is productive. You can easily flatten them if the owner wants them removed.

Watterlogged soil, everything rotting

Posted: 30/12/2012 at 14:10

Ligularia, Rodgersia and Gunnera come to mind. Bamboo is also very tolerant of damp ground, but not winter drowning, which sounds like what you have.

Can you put a shallow ditch down the side of the lowest part of the garden? That will drain out the worst water to one spot. Something 30cm wide and 50cm deep will collate the water from the rest of the garden as long as it is lower.

new years resolution

Posted: 28/12/2012 at 21:28

To not buy any plants in 2013...I spend far too much and cannot resist. I will resist in 2013, honestly


tetrapanax papyrifer seed germination

Posted: 20/12/2012 at 15:47

Thank you - that was quick. I spent hours looking on google without success.

tetrapanax papyrifer seed germination

Posted: 20/12/2012 at 15:24

A friend gave me some Tetrapanax papyrifer seeds from 'Chitern Seeds'. They did not come with germination instructions. Cannot seem to find any germination instructions online. Anyone had any luck in germinationg tetrapanax seed?


Posted: 16/12/2012 at 10:05

"evergreen and tall, to get to around 15 ft min"

You are talking conifers then as 15ft would be a mature (10-15 year at least) climbing plant. Have a look at Cypress - these make good screens, grow thinly and can be cut back. they also grow tall quite quickly.

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