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Latest posts by BobTheGardener

Growing Tomatoes Up String

Posted: 19/06/2015 at 19:12

The softer the better David.  I've used the course threaded stuff and find both that and artificial fibres can cut into the stem as the fruit gets heavier which produces damage that can lead to fungal infections.

Ants eggs?

Posted: 19/06/2015 at 18:59

They look like empty shells of ants eggs to me - probably clearing them out of the nest.  Normally, a regular soaking of the pot will get rid of ants but I'm not sure the orchid would like that too much.  I would re-pot the orchid and shake off all of the soil/ants nest in the process.

My Strawberries are all being eaten

Posted: 19/06/2015 at 18:54

As said, likely blackbirds but it could also be squirrels.  Netting works against the birds but if they still disappear it's squirrels I'm afraid and they will scoff the lot no matter what defences you put in place (I speak from experience!) 

Cucumber feeding

Posted: 17/06/2015 at 18:49

Yes, too much feed and you'll do more harm than good florafanatic.  I only feed cucs and tomatoes once a fortnight myself.

I had a young apple

Posted: 16/06/2015 at 23:08

Where are you David?  Apricots don't grow well in most of the UK, especially in open positions - they usually need a sheltered spot such as by a south-facing wall.  Sanjy is right about not letting grass grow near the trunk - a circle of about a metre diameter should be kept clear of grass and weeds as those compete for the nutrients that the tree needs.

Ground cover plants?

Posted: 16/06/2015 at 19:21

Not particularly fast growing but Heuchera are pretty tough, need no real maintenance and come in an incredible number of colours these days.  Evergreen too.  If you grow them fairly close together they will suppress any weed growth.

The problem with most fast-growing ground cover is that it rarely stays where you want it and often becomes a thug if you don't keep it in check (which is, of course, the maintenance you are trying to avoid!)

Talkback: How to improve your soil

Posted: 16/06/2015 at 18:40

If you can't get any well-rotted farmyard manure locally, the bagged stuff from garden centres etc is very good these days.  I've been using the Westlands for a while now with great results.

Strange male courgette flower parts

Posted: 15/06/2015 at 22:33

The courgette fruit (in fact any fruit) only grows when the seeds inside have been fertilized (pollinated.)  If that doesn't happen, the fruit shrivels and drops off so the plant can save it's energy to form seeds in the next female flower.  From a plant's point of view (if there was such a thing!) it's only aim is to reproduce itself and that means producing fertile seeds. 

Help wanted please

Posted: 15/06/2015 at 22:04

I would stop feeding it and only water it when the top inch of soil is dry.  Too much food and water can cause leaves to yellow and drop like that.  You won't harm the plant by doing this and if it starts showing signs of recovery, you know you are on to a winner.

carrots and beets dying?

Posted: 14/06/2015 at 23:59

Unfortunately, carrots cannot be lifted and replanted successfully.  To thin them out you need to remove some while leaving the rest in place. You can use the thinnings in salads.  However, beetroot might re-grow after transplanting but will wilt badly because of the root disturbance.  Water it every day until it perks up.  Provide some shading until then to prevent the sun from drying them out.

Discussions started by BobTheGardener


Hope it finds it's way home 
Replies: 3    Views: 248
Last Post: 26/04/2016 at 18:22

Vine weevils

..ate all of my winter carrots! 
Replies: 8    Views: 1055
Last Post: 01/01/2016 at 22:01

Huge pest problem

Don't think netting will work 
Replies: 10    Views: 692
Last Post: 19/12/2015 at 21:00

Renovate or remove privet hedge?

Replace or cut back hard? 
Replies: 19    Views: 1241
Last Post: 20/09/2015 at 13:33


No real rain here for weeks 
Replies: 11    Views: 524
Last Post: 07/06/2015 at 18:41

Little Red Devils (Lily beetles)

They're about now! 
Replies: 1    Views: 547
Last Post: 06/04/2015 at 17:03

Christmas has come early

New trees 
Replies: 9    Views: 1138
Last Post: 19/12/2014 at 16:52

Anyone for squirrel crumble?

Thieving rodents 
Replies: 12    Views: 940
Last Post: 27/11/2014 at 21:12

Plant ID quizzes

Have fun identifying plants! 
Replies: 16    Views: 927
Last Post: 14/09/2014 at 13:17

Watering dried-out pots

Tip to help to stop water running straight through 
Replies: 13    Views: 854
Last Post: 28/07/2014 at 12:28

Blackfly - ladybirds to the rescue!

Broad bean tip blackfly infestation 
Replies: 2    Views: 731
Last Post: 13/07/2014 at 18:04

Bob's guide to picking soft fruit

Only fto be read by your household's main gardener! 
Replies: 3    Views: 622
Last Post: 05/07/2014 at 18:52

Lovely surprise

I went down the garden in the gloom.. 
Replies: 15    Views: 1006
Last Post: 18/06/2014 at 14:32

Dragonfly/Darter/Mayfly ID?

Flew into the polytunnel for a while 
Replies: 6    Views: 902
Last Post: 01/06/2014 at 21:44

A week of rain = jungle garden!

It's been too wet to really do anything outside.. 
Replies: 16    Views: 1388
Last Post: 01/06/2014 at 17:42
1 to 15 of 32 threads