Latest posts by Blueboots

Full sun fragrant climbing rose

Posted: 29/05/2013 at 10:59

Yep - it was definitely labelled Albertine, and it looked like Albertine, but was completely fragrance free.

Thanks artjak, I hadn't heard of 'rose repeat disease'. I don't know how to sterilise soil in-situ (or anywhere else for that matter), so planting in a cardboard box sounds like a good move.

I'll go to the garden centre and see if they have Compassion.

When I was a kid, the three story house on the end of the terrace had the most magnificent rose climbing right to the roof. It was white and had masses of blooms which were intensely fragrant. The blooms held their shape too, the lady that lived there used to give my mum some for the house.

Best Compost 2013

Posted: 29/05/2013 at 10:52

This is an excellent thread - thanks. I was particularly interested to hear what franco6832 had to say about J Arthur Bowers. I bought 6 bags recently, because my local DIY store was stocking it, and because it had a label on saying Which Best Buy 2012. If it's a which best buy, I thought it must be good. It's actually like finely chipped wood bark! I can't use it in containers, and have mixed up the first bag with other stuff to get rid of it around the garden.

I've been winding myself up to write to J Arthur and ask if this bag was a one-off dud. Apparently not . I will email and complain - I have another five bags of "compost" I don't know what to do with.


Bulrushes - a cunning plan

Posted: 29/05/2013 at 10:26

I think I've got that covered utcutlet. I just hook up a bit at the edge with the rake, and saw vertically through the mat, being careful not to go deep enough to nick the liner. I think it's going to take a lot of sawing and balancing though.

I've got a lot of the tops off by basically heaving the rake into the middle of the tops and pulling off what I could. It was quite good exercise!

However I do it, I see myself going in headfirst at some stage. Maybe I shouid consider wearing a wetsuit.

Full sun fragrant climbing rose

Posted: 29/05/2013 at 10:21

I've sprayed glypohsate over everything in a herb patch in a semi-circular bed front of my house (on top of the patio) to get rid of couch grass. I put a bin liner over the climbing rose, and while all the other things are dying well the rose is OK.

However, it has finally dawned on me that the climing rose isn't actually a climbing rose. I've let it go long and leggy next to a fan shaped trellis on the wall behind, but it doesn't actually climb. I'm going to pull it out and put it in quarantine in a pot, and plant another rose in it's place.

The wall is rendered white and faces due South, it's sheltered and hot (well as hot as it gets these days). The bed is shallow but wide and will be full of herbs once I take all the dead weeds out.

I'd prefer a yellow or red rose, but the most important thing is fragrance - I want a really smelly rose. The house is a bungalow so I don't want it to climb too madly - and I don't want it to damage the wall - I don't know how climbing roses climb.

In my last house I bought an Albertine for fragrance. It was nice, but had no smell whatsoever .

What do you think?


Bulrushes - a cunning plan

Posted: 29/05/2013 at 10:07

I have a small lined pond (about 10 ft across) which is choked with bulrushes. I've tried pulling them out individually, but that's quite tough, and sometimes the leaves pull out suddenly without the roots, and I've nearly fallen on my backside - or worse - overcompensated and nearly fallen headlong into the pond.

The bulrushes are in one big dense mat, too huge to just pull out altogether, so I have a cunning plan to deal with them.

I will carefully hook up a bit of it at the edge with a rake, then take my Fiskar's saw-on-a-stick and saw off bits till I've got it all out.

I haven't actually tried this yet. Would anyone care to comment before I take two pointy implements to a plastic lined pond? I can't think of anything better. Standing in the pond isn't a great option because I think I'd go through it - and my blue boots have started to leak .

bees living in my veg patch

Posted: 29/05/2013 at 09:46

Wow - that's quite a bee saga Wintersong, and a wonderful photograph! I'm also amazed at some of the other facts here. I have a lot to learn about bees.

We have lots of bees round our blue flowers, but have no idea where they live. We have a bee box but have only ever had spiders and earwigs in it , despite siting it out of direct sunshine/driving rain, and near good bee flowers.  The instructions said to put bits of mouse nest in it because bees are attracted to that. However, as we don't encourage mice, we don't have access to mouse nest.

Clearing nettles

Posted: 21/05/2013 at 15:34

Over the past two years I've got rid of a lot of chest high nettles by spraying with glyphosate. It was a large area so digging it all out wasn't really practical. Glyphosate does kill grass, but I was desperate and the garden was a mess so I didn't much care.I was careful to spray on calm days and it was very effective.

I started off with a largish spray container and graduated to a backpack - much easier to handle. Safer too, the strap linkage on the first container broke and the whole thing fell on the back of my leg. Had it hit my foot I think it would have broken it.

It does take a while for the nettles to start looking sick though - give it three weeks before you think the stuff hasn't worked.


Is ivy a good thing or a bad thing?

Posted: 21/05/2013 at 15:25

Good advice, thank you.  That's settled then, I'll go out and chop it off the trees and walls. I might try to eradicate it in some parts, but just keep an eye on it in others.

I had it growing up a garage wall, round a fountain at my last house. I kept it trimmed and it looked lovely, but it was in a pot. When I left, I destroyed it so my nice neighbour (it was her garage wall) didn't have problems with rampant ivy and unknown new neighbours.


Is ivy a good thing or a bad thing?

Posted: 21/05/2013 at 08:02

I have leylandii around the edges of my garden (and it has to stay there I'm afraid), and there is a lot of ivy too. It looks nice and keeps down things I really don't like (nettles etc), but the ivy itself is climbing the trees and walls, and becoming a nuisance.

Should I just try to keep it in check physically, or should I try to remove it?

update on Jeyes Fluid and cat probs

Posted: 21/05/2013 at 07:53

I had  success with tea bags soaked in ordinary (pine) disinfectant when cat started regularly using my herb container as a toilet!

I have a bigger garden now and jeyes/teabags might be a good idea where I'm growing anything edible. I wondered about putting some round the base of the bird feeder (local cats like to hang out there too), but I suspect it might upset the birds too. Do birds smell like mammals?

Discussions started by Blueboots

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Full sun fragrant climbing rose

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Bulrushes - a cunning plan

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Need advice on where to start and how to use the forum. 
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13 threads returned