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Latest posts by BobTheGardener

Favourite biscuit?

Posted: 24/03/2015 at 18:41

Plain digestives dunked in tea and removed just before they go too soft and fall in!

Few newbie questios (mainly tomatoes)

Posted: 24/03/2015 at 18:33

Yes Joe - if you start feeding too early you'll get lots of leafy growth instead of them producing flowering trusses.  There's a school of thought that when a plant senses diminishing nutrients being taken in that this triggers it to reproduce (ie a survival tactic) hence the earlier production of flowers to make seed.

Few newbie questios (mainly tomatoes)

Posted: 24/03/2015 at 00:32

Also peppers don't require the same strength feed as toms - use it at half strength.  The better liquid tomato feeds also contain trace elements - look for that on the label.  Having trace nutrients can help if the compost is lacking anything vital to healthy growth.  Under-watering is also better than over-watering and always water the compost directly to avoid wetting the leaves as this encourages fungal infections.

Dicentra spectabilis - is yours up yet?

Posted: 24/03/2015 at 00:18

Hi Gillian, yes the shoots are around 3-4 inches high on mine, but it is in a sheltered spot.

Plant Identification please

Posted: 22/03/2015 at 23:03
nutcutlet wrote (see)

I thought monbretia had flattened round corms

I agree - whatever those roots are, they aren't montbretia.

SALIX 'Flamingo'

Posted: 22/03/2015 at 22:32

Claire, just about all you can do is keep your fingers crossed.  The tree may have been 'sulking' after the shock of being planted and will hopefully soon start growing again.  To check it hasn't died, scrape a bit of the bark off near the end of a branch with your thumbnail - it should be green underneath.  If it is brown, move down the branch nearer the ground and try again.  If you don't find any green underneath the bark anywhere on the tree then I'm afraid it will have gone to the great garden in the sky.  If that's the case contact the supplier and you may get a replacement.

Anyone done any gardening today?

Posted: 22/03/2015 at 16:58

Beautiful day here - did some work on the veg beds, repotted some 2 year old strawberries into larger pots with plenty of well-rotted FYM in the mix.  Decided to sow all of the old tomato seeds which have been hanging around for a few years - if they all come up (and they might - tom seeds last for years in my experience) I'll have about 20 varieties!  Sowed all of the sweet pepper and chili seeds also on the heated bench and inspected all the other (,ainly flower) seeds I've sown over the last few weeks and found signs of life everywhere!   Before I know it, I'll be out of room.. as per usual!

Talkback: How to grow dahlias from seed

Posted: 22/03/2015 at 16:44

Sarah, ordinary multi-purpose compost will be fine.  Yes, they are perennial, but like all dahlias they are tender perennials, so you should move the pots inside to somewhere frost-free over winter, or lift the tubers (if planted in the ground) and store them in dry compost or wrapped in newspaper etc over the winter.  Sometimes dahlias will survive in the ground over winter.  All of the ones I've ever grown from seed have developed a sizeable tuber by the time the first frost comes.

Anyone done any gardening today?

Posted: 22/03/2015 at 15:14

Nice spot for something needing a bit of protection.  The roots of a fig would also be nicely 'hemmed in' there.  Fan-trained or espalier fruit tree, like a pear, peach apricot or nectarine?   Orange Pippin site has some good advice on those:


Chili Leaf Problem

Posted: 22/03/2015 at 15:04

As far as I can recall, they just "grew out of it" and later, larger leaves higher up the plants weren't affected.

Discussions started by BobTheGardener

Little Red Devils (Lily beetles)

They're about now! 
Replies: 1    Views: 139
Last Post: 06/04/2015 at 17:03

Christmas has come early

New trees 
Replies: 9    Views: 793
Last Post: 19/12/2014 at 16:52

Anyone for squirrel crumble?

Thieving rodents 
Replies: 12    Views: 590
Last Post: 27/11/2014 at 21:12

Plant ID quizzes

Have fun identifying plants! 
Replies: 16    Views: 532
Last Post: 14/09/2014 at 13:17

Watering dried-out pots

Tip to help to stop water running straight through 
Replies: 13    Views: 474
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: 315
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: 598
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: 715
Last Post: 03/03/2014 at 20:31
1 to 15 of 27 threads