Bob Bob

Latest posts by Bob Bob

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Anyone done any gardening today - version 3

Posted: 19/04/2017 at 18:13

Cleared out and knocked down the shed.Cleared out the space behind which had become a dumping place for all manner of cuttings, clippings and other things.

Filled 40 rubble sacks with the stuff that had been cleared from behind the shed! Also a huge clearout of old pots and planters (nothing fancy, plastic tat), old bike and loads of other garden paraphernalia.

5 trips to the local tip! Then the car needed a good cleaning!

Relaxed with a bit of planting in the front garden. Heuchera, Rock Rose and Winter Currant.

Absolutely goosed now!

Anyone done any gardening today - version 3

Posted: 11/04/2017 at 22:07

Mowed the lawn in the front garden and what's left of the lawn in the back garden (Thanks dog!). Then weeded the borders in the front.

While the front doesn't get the thousands of sycamore seedlings that the back garden gets it seems to be a favourite spot for Ground Elder - absolutely hate the stuff and it's a monotonous pain getting it out. Still, it's all looking much better now and ready for a bit of planting.

Anyone done any gardening today - version 3

Posted: 10/04/2017 at 20:31

Had a few packs of Hardy Annuals arrive from Chilterns so I've been sowing them direct in a new bed. In and around them I've planted some small silver foxgloves that were started in trays last year and then completely forgot about, some crocosmia that was started from seed about 3 years ago in a pot and split a couple of Heucharas.

Hopefully get plenty of colour with very few pennies spent.

Have my dahlias died ?

Posted: 10/04/2017 at 11:31

I've successfully speared right through my first Dahlia tuber of the season! One very big disadvantage to leaving them in the soil over winter

Not too concerned as I've had problems with aphids on Dahlias the last couple of years so I'm phasing them out of my garden. I had to do the same with Lillys due to red beetles.


Posted: 07/04/2017 at 20:42

If they're in a sunny spot then I'm 99% sure you won't have to worry about their performance or flowering. I have two in the garden and if I didn't cut them back hard they'd absolutely swamp their neighbours and they both flowered profusely and put around 6-7ft of growth in their first year.

Have my dahlias died ?

Posted: 07/04/2017 at 20:37

April is still very early for a Dahlia to be poking above the soil so I'd just wait. I've been waiting till May/June up here on Merseyside for them to show in pots.

I'd agree with Chloe Craven about leaving them in the ground. I've found cutting back after the first frosts and a generous mulching is enough to get them through winter. I'd only lift them if it was a flood prone site or one with poor drainage as it's sitting in water for long periods that will do for them generally.

Sycamore tree saplings from neighbours tree

Posted: 02/04/2017 at 20:44

Even our shed has sycamore seedlings growing on the roof this year! The mild autumn seems to have given them a real boom.

I say shed, it's a wooden wreck waiting to be pulled down since Storm Doris had her wicked way with it. Hopefully the neighbour will agree to at least some tree surgery if only to allow a bit more light in your garden. 

We have a large sycamore which probably predates the house given it's size. If any of our neighbours wanted to pay for it to be cut down I'd bite their hands off! Since we're renting though I'm not forking out and it only casts a shade for a small part of the day in a small part of the garden so we're lucky.

Help for a noob

Posted: 02/04/2017 at 19:12

Hi Paul - I'm a St.Helens lad, just up the road in Prescot now!

Have you considered a climbing Hydrangea? They take a year or so to get comfortable but will then climb your fence pretty quickly and are easy to prune or train if they're heading in the wrong direction. They also won't mind being stuck in the shade for a few hours a day. Not evergreen though so maybe not but it's a spectacular looking thing in autumn when the leaves turn a fiery orange before dropping.

And if drainage is a problem then a few moisture loving hostas dotted around will help suck up the excess. Another plant that doesn't need lots of sunlight to do well.

What's the best way to go about fixing this garden?

Posted: 02/04/2017 at 19:02

Looking at the photo the solution is going to involve plenty of digging, weeding and levelling off regardless of whether you want just a lawn or a big flowery show. The lawn looks beyond rescue - there are plenty of videos showing the steps involved. It's a fair old bit of work but nothing complicated and the effort you put in now will pay dividends down the line.

There was a very good Alan Titchmarsh series called "How To Be A Gardener" a few years back which you can still find posted online with the help of Google. That's a pretty good starting point if you just want a lawn and a few flowers.

Sycamore tree saplings from neighbours tree

Posted: 02/04/2017 at 18:53
Chloe Kraven says:

You don't need permission to trim branches that overhang your property.

Just do it and chuck the cuttings back over his fence

See original post


Sounds like a lot of work and potential legal problems and will solve the problem of around 2% of the seedlings if at all. And as the tree is on the other side of an alley there may be no overhanging branches whatsoever - not at all worth the hassle either way.

We get loads of sycamore seedlings but they're very easy to pluck out, especially before they get their first true leaves and for quite some time afterwards and as Stephanie said - very distinctive looking.

They're pretty inconsiderate are Sycamores - But sometimes you just have to accept that Mother Nature doesn't really prioritise us mere gardeners 

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