London (change)


Latest posts by BobTheGardener

Black ants all over my acer.

Posted: 10/04/2015 at 11:40

That's just their normal growth habit - the leaves will be normal when they are fully developed.

PS, I would remove the blue label around the trunk - they can restrict growth and hide pests or become a starting point for a fungal infection.  Or is that tape holding it together where it has been split/broken at some point?

Plant id please

Posted: 09/04/2015 at 22:54

Haha - how could I have forgotten that 'enchanting' weed! 

Hobby Greenhouse gets too hot

Posted: 09/04/2015 at 22:51

I have solar-panel powered fans in my greenhouse, but given the resources used to make the panels, I can't really call them sustainable.  My long-term solution was to grow a dwarf apple tree directly to the south and keep it it to an open shape by summer pruning.  That way, the greenhouse gets maximum light when it is needed most (from late autumn to spring) when there are no leaves on the tree and some shade in the summer which the leaves provide.  Bonus apples, too!

Plant id please

Posted: 09/04/2015 at 22:43

If I didn't try and keep on top of them, Geum urbanum and Ranunculus repens would completely take over my whole garden in short order!  OK, that's a bit of an exaggeration as I'm sure the Hedera helix and Fraxinus excelsior seedlings would survive and the Fragaria vesca would doubtless find a niche for itself, too, not to mention the Aegopodium podagraria and Elymus repens!   Blimey, they don't seem so bad when called by their latin names though do they?

Black ants all over my acer.

Posted: 09/04/2015 at 22:25

Edd's right - I would plunge the whole pot in a bucket of water for 30 minutes or so every few days until they have gone.  The ants may have excavated a nest inside the pot.

Fertilizing... Please help as it's driving me mad!

Posted: 09/04/2015 at 22:17

Hi Craigh, FB&B is long-lasting, so you only really need to use it once a year (apply as recommended  on the packet) , although most of us will add a little to the planting hole when something new goes in.  I started serious gardening in my mid-20s as an escape from technology (my work) but it has proven to be relaxing, exciting, keeps me fit and provides the tastiest fruit and veg I have ever eaten - what's not to like!

Fertilizing... Please help as it's driving me mad!

Posted: 09/04/2015 at 21:35

Well rotted horse manure would certainly be the best overall and you would normally spread that on flower beds and shrubs in early spring.  Put it on veg. beds in the autumn.  However, fish, blood and bone fertiliser is an excellent slow-release organic fertiliser which you just need to tickle-in to the surface with a small rake, hoe or similar andis usually added in spring.

If you have clay or sandy soil, then a top-dressing of well-rotted manure will improve the soil structure as worms will pull it down into the soil.  If you are lucky enough to have a good loamy soil then F,B & B will be enough but adding manure is good for any type of soil.

Growing carrots in a container

Posted: 09/04/2015 at 19:01

If you stand the box on a few bricks etc, you'll also have a better chance of avoiding carrot fly which allegedly only fly 18 inches high.  For the last few years I've very successfully grown carrots in raised wooden planters for that very reason and the days of my carrot crops being totally devastated by carrot fly are becoming a distant memory!   Works for parsnips too, but those need a deeper box - mine is 24" deep.

Sorry, another ID please!

Posted: 09/04/2015 at 18:52

Agree with foxglove.

Growing fruit and veg in desert conditions

Posted: 09/04/2015 at 18:52

If you like cherry sized tomatoes, Sungold is hard to beat for flavour and is a strong grower, so should do well there.  However, I think you're on to a loser with strawberries as I'm pretty sure they require a cold spell and as their best crops come in years 2 and 3, you will have a serious problem in keeping them alive over the summer.  Water melons might be worth a shot though.

Discussions started by BobTheGardener


Hope it finds it's way home 
Replies: 3    Views: 159
Last Post: 26/04/2016 at 18:22

Vine weevils

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

Huge pest problem

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

Renovate or remove privet hedge?

Replace or cut back hard? 
Replies: 19    Views: 1122
Last Post: 20/09/2015 at 13:33


No real rain here for weeks 
Replies: 11    Views: 489
Last Post: 07/06/2015 at 18:41

Little Red Devils (Lily beetles)

They're about now! 
Replies: 1    Views: 499
Last Post: 06/04/2015 at 17:03

Christmas has come early

New trees 
Replies: 9    Views: 1097
Last Post: 19/12/2014 at 16:52

Anyone for squirrel crumble?

Thieving rodents 
Replies: 12    Views: 899
Last Post: 27/11/2014 at 21:12

Plant ID quizzes

Have fun identifying plants! 
Replies: 16    Views: 877
Last Post: 14/09/2014 at 13:17

Watering dried-out pots

Tip to help to stop water running straight through 
Replies: 13    Views: 807
Last Post: 28/07/2014 at 12:28

Blackfly - ladybirds to the rescue!

Broad bean tip blackfly infestation 
Replies: 2    Views: 681
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: 587
Last Post: 05/07/2014 at 18:52

Lovely surprise

I went down the garden in the gloom.. 
Replies: 15    Views: 961
Last Post: 18/06/2014 at 14:32

Dragonfly/Darter/Mayfly ID?

Flew into the polytunnel for a while 
Replies: 6    Views: 853
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: 1350
Last Post: 01/06/2014 at 17:42
1 to 15 of 32 threads