Latest posts by BobTheGardener

Apple tree leaves

Posted: 08/06/2016 at 21:49

I would also pinch off the worst affected tips and this will also act as 'summer pruning' which will encourage more fruiting spurs to develop for the future.

Common 'short' poppy?

Posted: 08/06/2016 at 21:46

No, you have a genetic variation there, aka a mutant.

Please help me know what I've planted!?

Posted: 08/06/2016 at 21:44

The first one could be a primula of some kind.

Little fly-type critters

Posted: 08/06/2016 at 21:40

I'm pretty sure those are fungus gnats (sciarid flies) and you generally only see them in pots indoors.

Have a look at this site for some ideas on control but they don't cause much damage other than to very small seedlings.

Last edited: 08 June 2016 21:40:50

Lawn weed

Posted: 08/06/2016 at 20:00

Yep, commonly known a "Fox and cubs" and "Orange hawkweed".  Spreads by runners just under the surface and by seed.  Quite pretty but difficult to get rid once you have it.  It's one of the few native flowers which are orange.

Last edited: 08 June 2016 20:01:25

Lupins and woolly aphids

Posted: 07/06/2016 at 22:04

Like lily beetles, the problem with (american) lupin aphid is that it's an introduced species so there are few if any natural predators.  The ladybirds and blue tits around here gobble-up greenfly and other native aphids but they completely shun lupin aphid.  I've even transferred ladybird lavae onto infected plants but they crawled off of the plants within minutes.

What plant is this

Posted: 07/06/2016 at 21:01

The star-shaped growth on the soil surface is liverwort which indicates poor drainage and is probably essential for your orchids to thrive.  The lilies will probably die in those conditions but I'd sooner keep the orchids!

The poor drainage would also make the Marsh orchid the most likely suspect as has already been suggested.

Last edited: 07 June 2016 21:03:49

Earth / Soil Advice

Posted: 06/06/2016 at 21:39

Hamish, the best way to improve the soil is to put down 2-3 inches of well-rotted farmyard manure.  The bagged stuff (eg Grosure) available from garden centres is very good stuff.  You can dig it in or just lay it on the soil and let the worms do the work but that obviously takes longer.  One thing to be wary of when raising the soil level near a fence is that the bottom of the fence will rot so you need to put something there to retain the soil such as decking boards laid on edge and screwed to 2x2" wooden stakes hammered into the ground.  A wooden retaining edge like that would last for maybe 10 years.

Help with something eating my Limelight Hedges!

Posted: 06/06/2016 at 21:30

Agreed, the ladybird larva will devour hundreds of aphids so is a real goody!  I suspect the damage seen is caused by slugs and/or snails.

Unidentified cucumber plant - what to do

Posted: 06/06/2016 at 21:21

It's difficult to tell with cucumbers but I'd put my money on it being a greenhouse type.  As long as we don't get another cold and wet spell it may well be ok in the sheltered situation you describe.  One tip is to make a slight mound and plant on top which will prevent the stem rotting at ground level which is often a problem with 'cumbers.

Last edited: 06 June 2016 21:22:26

Discussions started by BobTheGardener

Border design by Spanish bluebells

Random plantings 
Replies: 1    Views: 192
Last Post: 14/05/2017 at 14:32

Unknown bird

Came home this evening to find this 
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Last Post: 10/05/2017 at 20:19

Garden photos April

By month so folk can see what is in bloom for reference purposes. 
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Last Post: 02/04/2017 at 20:01

Winter soft fruit pruning

Some things to do now 
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Last Post: 04/02/2017 at 17:52

'Dramatic' music in TV programmes

Increase in noise! 
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Last Post: 23/11/2016 at 22:23

Autumn foliage photos (2016)

Thought I'd start a thread just for our photos 
Replies: 69    Views: 6909
Last Post: 03/12/2016 at 00:32

Gardener's World about to start now!

Replies: 16    Views: 968
Last Post: 14/07/2016 at 16:55

Cutting ID

I thought these were philadelphus 
Replies: 3    Views: 479
Last Post: 11/07/2016 at 17:34


Hope it finds it's way home 
Replies: 3    Views: 543
Last Post: 26/04/2016 at 18:22

Vine weevils

..ate all of my winter carrots! 
Replies: 8    Views: 1488
Last Post: 01/01/2016 at 22:01

Huge pest problem

Don't think netting will work 
Replies: 10    Views: 1133
Last Post: 19/12/2015 at 21:00

Renovate or remove privet hedge?

Replace or cut back hard? 
Replies: 17    Views: 2639
Last Post: 20/09/2015 at 13:33


No real rain here for weeks 
Replies: 11    Views: 765
Last Post: 07/06/2015 at 18:41

Little Red Devils (Lily beetles)

They're about now! 
Replies: 1    Views: 773
Last Post: 06/04/2015 at 17:03

Christmas has come early

New trees 
Replies: 9    Views: 1432
Last Post: 19/12/2014 at 16:52
1 to 15 of 40 threads