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BobTheGardener


Latest posts by BobTheGardener

apple canker

Posted: 26/01/2014 at 14:22

Hi PP, there's not much you can do other than the options you've already considered - either cut the affected branches out or live with it.  Canker is not usually fatal on a mature tree so just keeping an eye on it would be my advice.  If growth dies beyond the canker you will  have to remove the affected parts - if you can cut it back to another branch lower down the limb do that otherwise the whole branch should come off at the trunk.  The other possibility is to start a replacement tree in a large tub now with a view to removing the old tree and replacing it in a few years.  You could even try grafting a healthy scion from the old tree onto the new one if you don't want to lose it completely.

 

Soil warming cables

Posted: 26/01/2014 at 13:08

Hi Brumbull, that's exactly the type of cable I already bought, ready for my heated bench.  I have a different thermostat (from something else) but the one you show is also what I'd recommend for anyone starting from scratch.

Old timer2, I'd also recommend the Parasene cable.  Information from the company recommends that a 6m long cable is ideal for a 4'x2' box, so your 8'x2' would need twice that, so a 12m cable should be perfect.  They are on Amazon for £23 + £3 delivery which is very good value.

DIY heated propagator

Posted: 25/01/2014 at 18:15

Hi all, over the next couple of weekends I'm building a heated propagator from various bits of wood etc which I have left over from other projects around the house and garden and will post photos as I go.  Feel free to ask any questions if this sort of thing interests you.  

Today I made the base from left-over decking boards and some outdoor-grade plywood I happened to have:

 

http://s4.gardenersworld.com/uploads/images/original/36539.jpg?width=288&height=350&mode=max

Screwed together using stainless steel screws and painted with clear wood preserver before being put into the greenhouse overnight to dry.

 

in the green

Posted: 25/01/2014 at 17:59

I move bulbs even in flower (except deeply planted ones like tulips) nut, but I dig a whole clod of earth out with the bulbs inside.  Seems to work ok.

ORNAMENTAL APPLE TREE

Posted: 25/01/2014 at 17:48

Bumped for rubber

winter care of fruit trees

Posted: 25/01/2014 at 17:41

Yes, a bit too eager rubber!  They will start fruiting properly from the 3rd year and steadily get better.  The greenfly are 'farmed' by ants so the trick is to put a thick band of Vaseline all the way around the trunk, just above where it's tied to the stake.  This prevents the ants from climbing up into the tree carrying young aphids which they deposit on the youngest leaves.  The ants feed from the sugary honeydew which the aphids exude as a waste product when sucking sap.

Make sure you prune the young trees properly during winter for the first few years as it's important to form the right shape while they are young.  There are a few posts about how to do this on the forum - I'll bump them up for you.

Camera Corner

Posted: 25/01/2014 at 17:29

KEF, I usually only get a handful of nuts as the squirrels always beat me to them but got about a litre of them this past autumn - no squirrels for once!  Welcome back Fairy - missed you!

Camera Corner

Posted: 25/01/2014 at 15:37

Here's a pic of catkins on my hazel which were taken just before the thunder & lightning arrived:

http://s4.gardenersworld.com/uploads/images/original/36534.jpg?width=288&height=350&mode=max

If you zoom-in you can just make out the tiny female flowers (red bits on the end of some buds) which eventually turn into nuts.

Talkback: How to plant a bare-root rose

Posted: 25/01/2014 at 14:54

Agree with Dove and I'd also suggest planting them a little deeper to cover and protect potential buds at the bottom of the stems.  Some new roses arrived at about this time last year and had rather a lot of fresh growth on them which was later killed by frosts.  I was experimenting with planting depth at the time and out of the 4, the 2 I planted deeper sent up new shoots from the buried stems in the spring and flowered just fine.  The two planted with the graft at soil level died.

Big garden bird watch

Posted: 25/01/2014 at 11:25
flowersforbees wrote (see)

I know just what you mean Nutcutlet!  I had a flock of starlings came down onto

the bird table this morning, but it was impossible to count them as they were

constantly changing position and as others flew in, some flew off!  Have been able

to count one robin, two blue tits, two great tits, one thrush, five blackbirds, eight

sparrows and seventeen starlings (but there were probably about twenty five - they

just wouldn't stay still).

I know what you mean about the starlings - they go crazy over mealworms!  Love the collective nouns for them: Chattering, affliction or murmuration!  However, I have my own - a squabble of starlings!

Discussions started by BobTheGardener

Anyone for squirrel crumble?

Thieving rodents 
Replies: 5    Views: 113
Last Post: Yesterday at 22:29

Plant ID quizzes

Have fun identifying plants! 
Replies: 16    Views: 372
Last Post: 14/09/2014 at 13:17

Watering dried-out pots

Tip to help to stop water running straight through 
Replies: 13    Views: 338
Last Post: 28/07/2014 at 12:28

Blackfly - ladybirds to the rescue!

Broad bean tip blackfly infestation 
Replies: 2    Views: 197
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: 184
Last Post: 05/07/2014 at 18:52

Lovely surprise

I went down the garden in the gloom.. 
Replies: 15    Views: 502
Last Post: 18/06/2014 at 14:32

Dragonfly/Darter/Mayfly ID?

Flew into the polytunnel for a while 
Replies: 6    Views: 312
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: 693
Last Post: 01/06/2014 at 17:42

Deep Down & Dirty: The Science of soil

Replies: 4    Views: 412
Last Post: 24/04/2014 at 11:30

Check your delphiniums for caterpillars

Look for distorted and damaged leaves near the tips 
Replies: 10    Views: 485
Last Post: 22/04/2014 at 10:58

Seed grown Wisteria finally in flower - Hooray!

Planted many years ago 
Replies: 3    Views: 246
Last Post: 15/04/2014 at 12:39

Oops!

Polytunnel growing 
Replies: 16    Views: 543
Last Post: 16/04/2014 at 19:05

First day of (meteorological) Spring

How id your garden looking 
Replies: 13    Views: 557
Last Post: 03/03/2014 at 20:31

DIY heated propagator

Making one from scratch 
Replies: 48    Views: 4248
Last Post: 30/06/2014 at 19:57

Cost of bird food

bulk vs supermarket 
Replies: 31    Views: 1716
Last Post: 10/02/2014 at 12:33
1 to 15 of 25 threads