Latest posts by blairs

Talkback: Slug-proof plants

Posted: 27/06/2012 at 16:05

A problem this year is the wet weather and mild winter has created perfect slug conditions, so there are a lot more of them. I have found them eating lots of slug proof plants this year - Hellebores, Mahonia, Eunonymous and etc. Best pick them out at dusk with tweezers as others have said.

Talkback: Parakeets

Posted: 27/06/2012 at 15:59
Also a problem in Europe. You see them in Amsterdam, Brussels and Paris. I suppose they have novelty value for many.

Acer problems

Posted: 03/06/2012 at 22:39
Alina W wrote (see)

Because acers naturally grow under trees in leaf litter, a myth has developed that they need ericaceous soil. They will grow in ericaceous soil, but don't need it to thrive.

Quite true! I use compost from my garden but do give an ericauous feed when I can remember to do so which is not that often.

Acer problems

Posted: 01/06/2012 at 10:01

The wind of earlier in the year when the young leaves were emerging did not help but I think a few of mine suffered the same fate as yours due to the heavy rain. It compacted the soil enough that it stayed wet for ages and caused root problems. I removed mine from their pots, loosened the soil, added a small amount of fertiliser and am hoping ther their reserve leaves emerge. I scratched the trunk and they are still green underneath - so do the same. Even if no new leaves come out this year I would wait to see if they emerge next, so keep watering and looking after them.


chickens and slug pellets

Posted: 29/05/2012 at 19:42

Mmm. I use pellets and they work great on stopping slugs eating my plants. From what I have read the side effects of birds and animals eating poisoned slugs is negligible-they would have to eat 10K slugs a day to get the same toxicity. But I would factor in what you do with the chickens. If it is eggs only then no worries, eating them then I would be more weary.

bolting onions

Posted: 27/05/2012 at 20:17

The only problem with bolted onions is that they do not store - they use all their energy to make flowers. One of the main reasons fro bolting is disturbed roots - moving them or too dry/wet. Leave them till the bulb is of useable size and you will not have lost out.

Planting out

Posted: 26/05/2012 at 12:56

Gunnera is a bog plant from South America, the heat is not going to affect it!

For trees, dig a hole 2 the diameter of the tree and just smaller than the height of the roots. Soak the planting hole with water and add some bonemeal and compost. Add the tree - you want the root ball to be slightly above the hole to stop it from drowning in heavy rain until the roots have grown.


Posted: 25/05/2012 at 14:25

Palaisglide advice is correct, though I need to ask, are they bare root plants planted this year? The leaves to root ratio are out of sync due to the roots being removed, so with that is another possible reason for poor looking leafs. Keep them well watered.

Rowan Tree

Posted: 25/05/2012 at 14:22

I have some Rowan trees. I have them as a boundary planting to screen neighbours. They grow thin and upright for the first 10 years then start to branch out and thicken. You can plant it anywhere as long as you prune it. They take a pruning and can be kept at a reasonable height for any garden. I mixed mine with Birch. Both give a dappled screening which is pleasant all year round.

What plants go well with Freesia?

Posted: 23/05/2012 at 20:18

They go well with Sparaxis - aka Harlequin flower. They are both the same shape, size, contrasting flowers and Sparaxis has no perfume, so does not detract from the wonderful Freesia perfume. Freesia in UK are best in full sun - esp if you want the perfume.

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