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Latest posts by BobTheGardener

young tomatoe plants

Posted: 26/04/2013 at 21:00

Like Fairygirl, I usually pot-on to 5 or 6" pots after the 3".  I don't plant into the cold greenhouse until local night time temperatures are guaranteed to not drop much below 10C, so about the end of May.  They've spent most of this week in the GH all day and night, but will be brought back indoors each night starting tonight, now that the night temps are forecast to be single figures (or even frosts) for the next few days.

does anyone know what it is??

Posted: 26/04/2013 at 20:44

I think nutcutlet is right - the flower buds look identical if you extract the photo and blow it up in an external image viewer.  I wish they'd fix the photos on the site so we can just click them to zoom-in, like we used to be able to.

Chelsea chop

Posted: 26/04/2013 at 11:35

Hi nut, yes, that's the main reason I do it to mine.  I was going to consign them to the compost bin as I got fed up with them falling over everything until I tried cutting them back when they were about 12-15" high.  Still might get rid to be honest - not overly keen on them, so if I need space for something else, they're high on the list of possible sacrifices! 

Compost bags

Posted: 26/04/2013 at 11:23

I also use them for lining pots and planters as well as the trenches in the greenhouse. I've also turned them inside out to hide the labels and used them for planting spuds and toms, but even all of that only recycles about 10% of them so I agree it's a problem.  There must be a way to commercially recycle all types of plastic bag I would have thought.  A chance for someone to make a few million with the right idea?!

Don't want my greenhouse blowing down..

Posted: 26/04/2013 at 10:09

The sliding door extension might work.  Most of the weight of sliding doors is taken by the top rail (there are usually wheels in the top of the door which run along the top door rail which comes with the kits.)  All the bottom door rail does is guide the door and stops it swinging outwards, so you could even screw a piece of timber to the concrete to do that.

I would build the base and greenhouse as it is first (but no glass yet), so you can see how everything works, then cut parts out to extend the door later (an angle grinder with a metal cutting disk will easily cut through both aluminium and breeze block.)  One problem may be that an extended door will hit the breeze blocks when you slide it.  The way around that might be to set the the breeze blocks on that side of the door frame in a different way, so they are flush with the outside, or cut part of them away with a chisel.  The most important thing is that the greenhouse frame and base is supported from below by the breeze blocks all the way around where there is glass above.  If you don't do that, the weight of the glass will cause the frame/base to bend and the glass will crack.  If you can't see an easy way to do that on the door end, having to use a couple of steps wouldn't be the end of the world!

Mirabelle de Nancy plum

Posted: 26/04/2013 at 09:14

This diagram shows it quite well:


Don't want my greenhouse blowing down..

Posted: 26/04/2013 at 00:22

Hi garjobo, while I don't really fit the description very well , I am pretty handy at DIY and will try and help.  First, breeze blocks come in 3 types, low density (sometimes called aerated), medium density and high density (sometimes called concrete blocks.)  You want medium or high density.  Medium density can be drilled fairly easily and are strong enough to take rawlplugs.  High density will be much harder to drill and are much heavier.  Don't use low density - those are the crumbly ones.

First, lay your base out on the concrete and make sure it is square by measuring between opposite corners.  When both measurements are exactly the same, it is square (ie all corners are 90 degrees.)  Lay the base on the concrete slab (which you say you have already laid) and, using chalk, draw all the way around the inside of the base.  Using a straight piece of timber, mark another line about an inch inside the lines you drew on the concrete before, so you end up with two rectangles, one inside the other.  Lay the breeze blocks to the inner lines using a 3:1 mix of builders sand and cement, so there will be one inch of breeze block showing all the way around the inside, when you lay the base on them. This gives you some leeway and will ensure that the rawlplug holes (which you will drill later) aren't too near the edge of the blocks.  Wait a few days to make sure the cement has set (cover with plastic if rain or frost is expected.)

Drill 5mm holes through the bottom of the metal base (about 4 or 5 holes along each side will be enough, and 2 or 3 at each end) then lay the base on the breeze blocks and mark the breeze blocks below through the holes (eg using a permanent marker pen.)  Remove the base and drill holes for the rawlplugs at the marks, using the correct size drill bit to suit the rawlplugs (I suggest 6mm rawlplugs.) The holes need to be 45mm deep (wrap some electrical tape around your masonry drill bit, so there is 45mm of bit showing from the tip, so you don't drill the holes too deep.)  Screw the base into the rawlplugs using size 5x45mm stainless steels woodscrews (eg 5x45mm turbo ultra from Screwfix.) It is important to use stainless steel screws when fixing aluminium anywhere which will get wet as even zinc plated steel screws will rust quickly.  If any of the holes are in the wrong place, you can still unscrew the base at this stage and drill new holes.

Hope that helps!


growing onions and sets

Posted: 25/04/2013 at 20:21

Hi Dave, did you harden them off before planting out?  If not, they will have had a bit of a shock and will sulk for a while before resuming growth.

Broad beans

Posted: 25/04/2013 at 20:19

Hi Russell, only when they are fully grown (ie about 3-4ft tall) and that is only to prevent blackfly infestation.  I usually wait until one plant has a sign of blackfly, then pinch out the tips of them all.

Large polytunnel and beds and no clue where to start

Posted: 24/04/2013 at 22:56

Glyphosate inactivates when it touches the soil - you only spray it on the weed leaves, which absorb it.  It then kills the whole plants, roots and all.  As soon as the weeds have died and gone brown you can remove them and plant immediately.

What a wonderful resource you have in that large polytunnel, Louise - I'd love one that size!

Discussions started by BobTheGardener

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1 to 15 of 17 threads