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Latest posts by BobTheGardener

Grease bands for new cherry trees?

Posted: 19/10/2014 at 14:47

As you will be fan training them, ants will have many more ways to get onto the trees to do their 'aphid farming' than just by climbing up the trunks, so it's probably not worth using grease bands.  I would just keep an eye on them (particularly the growing tips) and treat any aphid attacks on the young leaves as and when you find them.

If you are fan training using free-standing posts and wire rather than against a fence or wall then a grease band on both the trunks and each post might be worth considering.

Tomatoes Indoors for next year

Posted: 18/10/2014 at 13:57

No for the tomatoes and maybe for the chillies.  Chillies are perennial but don't always survive over the winter indoors; it depends on exactly what the indoor conditions they experience are.

New small pond for frogs/toads

Posted: 18/10/2014 at 10:11

With a slug population that large I think your idea of using nematodes is a good one.  Those are completely natural and exist in small numbers in the soil anyway.  Perhaps your garden has low numbers of natural slug predators in general, so it's worth trying all of the suggestions here.  Frogs and toads are not a panacea against slugs but they will eat a few of the smaller ones each night so a pond can only help.  For snails you do need to try and attract thrushes and hedgehogs.

over wintering fuschias

Posted: 17/10/2014 at 20:08

The answer to that is "hardly at all".  Dormant plants are easily killed by a combination of overwatering and cold when they may survive the cold alone.  Once the leaves have fallen and the plant is dormant, the compost only needs to be barely moist.  I'm a great believer in the 'finger test':  Poke a finger into the compost and as long as it feels slightly damp about an inch down then no water is necessary.  The top inch can be completely dry with no ill effects.

Garden Fencing

Posted: 17/10/2014 at 19:36

Triangular section arris rails are used as there's no chance of detritus building up on top of them thus giving rot a place to get started like it would on a rectangular section horizontal batten.  Probably less wood needed too, which will be the real reason of course!

Any suggestions

Posted: 17/10/2014 at 19:12

Trained fruit trees for me!  Peach, nectarine, fig and pear far a start - in fact most fruit trees would love to be trained against a lovely heat-retaining wall like that.

Edit: just read your other message regarding altitude and being a frost pocket so maybe not!

Spent Tomato Compost

Posted: 17/10/2014 at 18:44

I was just about to write exactly the same thing, artjak.

unidentified veg

Posted: 16/10/2014 at 18:57

Yep, forked white carrot from the rainbow mix I reckon.  Nut is right - if it smell like a carrot, that is what it is.

Moving clematis

Posted: 16/10/2014 at 18:52

You could try taking some softwood cuttings in Spring as insurance, Mrs G.  I've found the cirrhosa types much easier to root than other clematis.  Details on how to take softwood cuttings here:

No digging required!

Apple tree problems

Posted: 15/10/2014 at 20:51

The RHS now advise against using anything on tree wounds as there is evidence that it can trap fungal spores and bacteria underneath the wound paint and actually slows the healing process.

I'm not sure I'd do what you suggest though in removing the whole limb above the support.  Cutting a large branch like that half way will cause more problems than it solves.  I'd just remove the short stumpy bit if you aren't going to remove the whole thing to the main trunk.  I like Alan's advice and suggest looking at the RHS advice on renovative pruning of old apple trees:


Discussions started by BobTheGardener

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A week of rain = jungle garden!

It's been too wet to really do anything outside.. 
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Deep Down & Dirty: The Science of soil

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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
1 to 15 of 29 threads