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Latest posts by BobTheGardener

Lifted onion sets

Posted: 26/04/2014 at 15:06

I do exactly the same as Colin but use standard modules.  Since starting sets off this way in the GH, I've always had good crops and no problem with birds pulling them up.

Tree Growth

Posted: 26/04/2014 at 14:00

That looks a pretty good shape to me and it will start showing new shoots soon (it's a bit early for them to appear yet on an olive grown outside in the UK.)  Have a look at the RHS advice on growing and pruning olive trees:



Posted: 26/04/2014 at 13:56

They do need a year or three to settle in and start cropping well.  In the first year or two you want to encourage them to grow new strong stems, preferably from the base (snip off any weak, spindly growth.)  Feed them with a proprietary ericaceous liquid feed every few weeks and you should be fine next year.  If you can get any ericaceous bark chippings or similar mulch, they do appreciate a layer of that on top of the compost as they have lots of roots near the surface and this helps to protect them from drying out.

Tulip Care

Posted: 26/04/2014 at 12:49

Hi Helga, yes you can snip the flower stems off.  What sort of tulips are they?  Most of the 'fancy' types do not usually come back well in the second year and many  gardeners treat them as annuals, digging them up after flowering so they can plant summer bedding plants etc.  I leave them in but have lots of hardy perennials in my beds which are now starting to grow and will cover the dying tulip foliage.  If you do leave them in, it's important to remove the leaves once those die as they carry a virus called 'tulip fire' which will otherwise very likely affect the tulips badly next year.

Tree Growth

Posted: 26/04/2014 at 12:34

Normally, if the growing point at the top of the main trunk is cut off (and it sounds like this has been done to your tree) one branch near the top will become dominant and is known as the 'leader'.  This will become the new trunk in time.  Can you post a photo of the whole tree so we can have a look at how it is currently growing?  It may need some formative pruning to help it grow into a good shape in the future.

Chili Hardiness

Posted: 26/04/2014 at 11:14

Chilies and peppers really need a minimum night temperature of 12C to grow really well.  From my own experience, anything under 5C can kill them, or at least badly stunt their growth and they take a long time to recover from having their growth 'checked' like that.  I'd keep bringing them in at night until June.


Can anyone identify this invader?

Posted: 26/04/2014 at 10:58

Just saw the new image - Elder for me.

Can anyone identify this invader?

Posted: 26/04/2014 at 10:57

Young Ash tree(s) or elder.  Either way, best dig it out while you still can (unless you want a big tree there.)  As mentioned above, tricky to give 100% positive ID as the pic is a bit small and we need to see the growing point at the top.

Indoor cyclamen

Posted: 25/04/2014 at 21:04

They will open naturally at the point they are ready to be sown.  I find them incredibly easy to grow.  Just pop the seed onto some seed compost and cover lightly (I usually use a dusting of fine vermiculite but fine compost also works.)  Once they have grown a couple of leaves, carefully prick-out and plant the tiny round corm which will have formed just on or below the surface of a small pot.  In 2 years they will have grown large enough to flower.

Tomato leaf problem troubleshooting

Posted: 25/04/2014 at 20:57

Take a look at the undersides with a magnifying glass. The only thing that reminds me of is early signs of spider mite damage.  Those creatures are too small to be seen with the unaided eye.  They produce webs as the infestation takes hold.  It doesn't look like any of the forms of fungal infection I am familiar with.

Discussions started by BobTheGardener

Little Red Devils (Lily beetles)

They're about now! 
Replies: 1    Views: 137
Last Post: 06/04/2015 at 17:03

Christmas has come early

New trees 
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Last Post: 19/12/2014 at 16:52

Anyone for squirrel crumble?

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

Plant ID quizzes

Have fun identifying plants! 
Replies: 16    Views: 531
Last Post: 14/09/2014 at 13:17

Watering dried-out pots

Tip to help to stop water running straight through 
Replies: 13    Views: 473
Last Post: 28/07/2014 at 12:28

Blackfly - ladybirds to the rescue!

Broad bean tip blackfly infestation 
Replies: 2    Views: 332
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: 314
Last Post: 05/07/2014 at 18:52

Lovely surprise

I went down the garden in the gloom.. 
Replies: 15    Views: 620
Last Post: 18/06/2014 at 14:32

Dragonfly/Darter/Mayfly ID?

Flew into the polytunnel for a while 
Replies: 6    Views: 524
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: 981
Last Post: 01/06/2014 at 17:42

Deep Down & Dirty: The Science of soil

Replies: 4    Views: 597
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: 663
Last Post: 22/04/2014 at 10:58

Seed grown Wisteria finally in flower - Hooray!

Planted many years ago 
Replies: 3    Views: 356
Last Post: 15/04/2014 at 12:39


Polytunnel growing 
Replies: 16    Views: 664
Last Post: 16/04/2014 at 19:05

First day of (meteorological) Spring

How id your garden looking 
Replies: 13    Views: 714
Last Post: 03/03/2014 at 20:31
1 to 15 of 27 threads