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Latest posts by BobTheGardener

unknowns plants

Posted: 12/09/2014 at 14:08

The first one looks like a chrysanthemum which should be coming into flower about now, if it is.  2nd looks like a not-very-healthy clematis and the last is a fuchsia.  None of them need cutting back at this time but cut chrysanthemums back to the ground in winter and prune the fuchsia quite hard in early spring, back to emerging buds.  Young clematis should be cur back to about 30cm high regardless of the pruning group in early spring.

Hawthorn hedge

Posted: 12/09/2014 at 13:59

I think that's the answer as Orchard Ermine (Yponomeuta padella) moths do feed on hawthorn and I can see what look like caterpillar droppings when the pics are seen full size.


Can someone please identify the problem with this conifer & what to do?

Posted: 11/09/2014 at 21:46

Unfortunately, conifers don't sprout new growth from main trunks or branches.  That section is dead as a dodo and won't recover, but you may be able to save the rest by cutting it out promptly, otherwise it might continue to die back to the roots (if it hasn't already.)

The conifers either side in the hedge will grow from the ends of their branches and will hopefully cover the gap in time.  Nature abhors a vacuum!

Talkback: How to fit an automatic greenhouse vent opener

Posted: 11/09/2014 at 21:06

I can tell you how I adjusted mine:  At night when the temperature was low, I turned the adjustment so that the window was only just closed.  I found this allowed it to open to the maximum (about 8 inches) on a hot day.

Hot thread

Posted: 11/09/2014 at 20:54

The original 'Cosmos' was presented by the late Carl Sagan and this is the version you want to watch.  The series was later re-made but although more up do date scientifically, isn't a patch on the original which was truly awe inspiring thanks to Sagan's wonderful presentation skills.

Can someone please identify the problem with this conifer & what to do?

Posted: 11/09/2014 at 20:49

It looks like dieback, possibly from a fungal disease.  I think all you can do is delve inside, cut the dead section out (try to cut a few inches lower than the dead section)and hope the other parts grow to cover the hole.  It looks like a conifer hedge?

Discoloured skin n outdoor grown tomatoes

Posted: 11/09/2014 at 20:29

The blackened stems are a sign that it's almost certainly late blight.  I'd do as you suggest, removing all remaining trusses and binning the main stems.

Best Blueberry Variety?

Posted: 11/09/2014 at 20:12

I agree with David, MrsT and you should remove all dead growth and also any wispy, weak growth growing near the base.  The strong, long shoots are the ones which are going to produce your crop next year.

When to pick green tomatoes

Posted: 11/09/2014 at 20:03

Ideally they should be left on the plants to ripen as long as the plants are healthy.  There is no guarantee that tomatoes picked when they are green will ripen, but if you have to pick them because the plants become diseased, then place them somewhere warm as it is temperature which ripens them, not light.  Storing them with a ripe banana can help as that will release ethane gas which artificially promotes ripening, but keep an eye on them in case any of them (or the banana) begin to rot and remove those.

Plant ID Help

Posted: 11/09/2014 at 17:25

It's a brassica of some kind, possibly a young 'walking stick' cabbage (Jersey kale) although rather small for that.  Was it growing in amongst other plants?  If so, possibly from dropped birdseed - I get a lot of brassicas in my borders from that.

Discussions started by BobTheGardener

Renovate or remove privet hedge?

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


No real rain here for weeks 
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Little Red Devils (Lily beetles)

They're about now! 
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Christmas has come early

New trees 
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Anyone for squirrel crumble?

Thieving rodents 
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Plant ID quizzes

Have fun identifying plants! 
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Last Post: 14/09/2014 at 13:17

Watering dried-out pots

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

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! 
Replies: 3    Views: 434
Last Post: 05/07/2014 at 18:52

Lovely surprise

I went down the garden in the gloom.. 
Replies: 15    Views: 756
Last Post: 18/06/2014 at 14:32

Dragonfly/Darter/Mayfly ID?

Flew into the polytunnel for a while 
Replies: 6    Views: 668
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: 1143
Last Post: 01/06/2014 at 17:42

Deep Down & Dirty: The Science of soil

Replies: 4    Views: 776
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: 1221
Last Post: 22/04/2014 at 10:58

Seed grown Wisteria finally in flower - Hooray!

Planted many years ago 
Replies: 3    Views: 469
Last Post: 15/04/2014 at 12:39
1 to 15 of 29 threads