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Latest posts by BobTheGardener


Posted: 19/10/2013 at 19:18

They are Palace Purple, Verdun.  I think they may have been part of a perennial plug collection and have been grown on in a coldframe for most of the year as they were tiny when they arrived.  Like your Pulmonaria, it'll give me something to look at until I decide what else is going in there or the Spring bulbs appear.  Sorry to hear about your niece's experience - that sort of thing is always extremely upsetting.  By the way, can you or anyone else recommend a good supplier for Dierama?  I really fancy trying some but haven't had much luck in finding them.

Red Robins?

Posted: 19/10/2013 at 18:39

Photinia can be propagated by taking softwood cuttings in early Summer or semi-ripe cuttings in late Summer or Autumn.  It might be a bit late now but worth trying - RHS advice on semi-ripe cuttings here:


Crazy raspberries

Posted: 19/10/2013 at 18:35

Have they been in a couple of years or more and planted fairly near each other?  If so I suspect that the Autumn fruiting ones may have sent underground runners and are coming up in between your Summer fruiting ones - I had them appear over 20 feet away.  It's also not unknown for them to be accidentally mixed up by the supplier if they are fairly new canes.


Posted: 19/10/2013 at 18:18

Hi all, just managed to finish planting 150 crocus, 25 hyacinth and half a dozen heuchera into my new beds before the rain started - it really came down hard in very visible sheets!  No need to water anything in now in though.

Help needed with Twisted Hazel Tree

Posted: 19/10/2013 at 18:04

I agree with Dove.  The black leaves may just have been coated with honeydew from aphids.  This thin layer of sugars excreted by the aphids usually does turn black at this time of the year when a kind of black mould grows on it.  If it's that it won't harm your tree and the leaves will fall off very soon anyway as hazels of all kinds are losing  their leaves right now.  

What tree is this?

Posted: 19/10/2013 at 13:57

Andrew, yes, that is definitely hawthorn.  However, don't worry about putting poisonous plants or berries onto your compost heap.  The bacteria in compost heaps will happily break down any type of plant material into harmless compost and there is absolutely no danger of any plant poisons remaining and being taken up into your vegetables when the compost is later used on them.


Preparing bed for onions

Posted: 18/10/2013 at 23:27

No, Madeleine, I start them off in Spring.  I've tried Autumn planting with a few things (onions and broad beans come to mind) but they never do very well for me - having clay soil probably doesn't help - I would imagine if you have lighter, better drained soil it would worth trying though.

To Manure or not to Manure

Posted: 18/10/2013 at 21:55

Yep, comfrey brew is excellent stuff.  Nettle tea has more nitrate so more suited to leafy veg and comfrey is more balanced so perfect for flowers and fruit.  Either will work extremely well on your broccoli but I'd use the nettle on the broccoli and save the comfrey for tomatoes etc.

Preparing bed for onions

Posted: 18/10/2013 at 19:06

Onions are greedy feeders so adding anything rich in nutrients to the soil will help.  I also use fish, blood and bone and mix a few good handfulls into a bucket of home made compostm with each set getting a trowelfull when they are planted out (I start them in modules in the cold GH.)   The resulting onions are pretty consistently tennis-ball sized, sometimes larger.

To Manure or not to Manure

Posted: 18/10/2013 at 18:42

If the patch has had one good lot of manure in it this year that should be good enough.  Broccoli and other brassicas needs Nitrogen and that is being supplied by the dead roots of the runner beans which 'fix' their own Nitrogen from the air (actually it's symbiotic bacteria which grow in bean root nodules which do the business.)  If you want to give the broccoli a boost once it is planted, use a high-nitrate fertiliser such as nettle tea, chicken pellets or use growmore pellets if you don't mind using non-organic fertilisers.

Discussions started by BobTheGardener

Blackfly - ladybirds to the rescue!

Broad bean tip blackfly infestation 
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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! 
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Lovely surprise

I went down the garden in the gloom.. 
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Dragonfly/Darter/Mayfly ID?

Flew into the polytunnel for a while 
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A week of rain = jungle garden!

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Last Post: 01/06/2014 at 17:42

Deep Down & Dirty: The Science of soil

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Last Post: 24/04/2014 at 11:30

Check your delphiniums for caterpillars

Look for distorted and damaged leaves near the tips 
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Last Post: 22/04/2014 at 10:58

Seed grown Wisteria finally in flower - Hooray!

Planted many years ago 
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Last Post: 15/04/2014 at 12:39


Polytunnel growing 
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Last Post: 16/04/2014 at 19:05

First day of (meteorological) Spring

How id your garden looking 
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Last Post: 03/03/2014 at 20:31

DIY heated propagator

Making one from scratch 
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Last Post: 30/06/2014 at 19:57

Cost of bird food

bulk vs supermarket 
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Last Post: 10/02/2014 at 12:33

Wild Garden (Community Channel)

On Freeview/Sky 
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Last Post: 10/12/2013 at 12:21

Front garden revamp - before and after photos

Redsigning weedy crazy paving 
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Last Post: 21/10/2013 at 20:16


Flowering in September 
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Last Post: 13/09/2013 at 13:20
1 to 15 of 22 threads