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Latest posts by BobTheGardener

Apple tree problem or not

Posted: 14/07/2013 at 13:08

Ants themselves don't harm apples trees, but they farm aphids which do cause damage.  If you look at the leaves on the branch tips, you will doubtless find aphids which the ants have carried there.  As aphids suck the sap they produce honeydew as a waste product and the ants eat this.

To prevent ants from climbing the tree, try putting a thick wide band of vaseline around the trunk and cut down any tall nearby plants which touch the tree branches and would allow the ants to find another route up the tree.

You shouldn't allow apples to produce fruit for the first 2 or 3 years anyway so that they can establish a good root system first, so lack of apples on your year old tree is actually a Good Thing.

Insect ID

Posted: 13/07/2013 at 16:42

Hi Frozz, that's a ladybird larva, 100%.  Lucky you!

Pond level dropping.....

Posted: 13/07/2013 at 15:11

Suggest filling the water butt using a spray attachment on the hose.  This will take longer to fill it but it'll provide the best possible aeration and should allow a lot of the chlorine to disperse.

Dahlia problem

Posted: 12/07/2013 at 22:54

Let's hope that's not the start of a plague of dahlia-loving locusts, SwissSue! 

Good Evening FORKERS

Posted: 12/07/2013 at 21:40

Hi Verd & all, runner beans also finally forming here, first raspberries ripened today too although they didn't make it very far - "gardener's privilege" if you know what I mean!  Noticed all of the winter squash have at least one fruit on now, with each vine growing another metre since Monday - amazing what a few days of sunshine can do!

Hope things go better for those previously mentioned in this thread who are currently unwell.

little black bugs smothering many of my plants

Posted: 12/07/2013 at 19:30

In previous years I have used bug spray to stop sawfly devastating my Soloman's seal.  However, this year I decided to just pick them all off by hand but last night I noticed a tiny wasp laying eggs into each and every sawfly larvae so decided I quite like the idea of lots more of these predators being around in the future and let them be.  The Soloman's seal will still be eaten to shreds this year, but next year there may be a lot more of these predator wasps which may help keep sawfly numbers down.  The bug spray would have killed the wasp too of course.  It's just a different (and better, in my opinion) way of looking at things.

Garden Gallery 2013

Posted: 12/07/2013 at 17:13

Beautiful gardens everyone - I'm a bit jealous of the larger ones but have become quite good at cramming lots of things into a relatively small area!:


Alliums with Agapanthus?

Posted: 12/07/2013 at 16:45

I wouldn't plant the agapanthus too close to the alliums as agapanthus can be quite thuggish and have large root systems - I'm just revamping a raised bed so will nip out and take a couple of pics to show you just how invasive these roots can be.

Plant and roots:

 Roots close-up:


help please.....anyone

Posted: 12/07/2013 at 15:30

Passionate, I'm pretty sure you need to upload to a photo site first with Apple devices, so try uploading to Picasa.  This should do it:

Once that is done successfully, you can paste the link into the 'External site' bit when you click the little tree on this site.


Can anyone tell me what this is?

Posted: 12/07/2013 at 15:22

It's Lychnis chalcedonica, probably 'Pinkie'.

Discussions started by BobTheGardener

Anyone for squirrel crumble?

Thieving rodents 
Replies: 5    Views: 238
Last Post: 25/10/2014 at 22:29

Plant ID quizzes

Have fun identifying plants! 
Replies: 16    Views: 405
Last Post: 14/09/2014 at 13:17

Watering dried-out pots

Tip to help to stop water running straight through 
Replies: 13    Views: 358
Last Post: 28/07/2014 at 12:28

Blackfly - ladybirds to the rescue!

Broad bean tip blackfly infestation 
Replies: 2    Views: 229
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: 205
Last Post: 05/07/2014 at 18:52

Lovely surprise

I went down the garden in the gloom.. 
Replies: 15    Views: 525
Last Post: 18/06/2014 at 14:32

Dragonfly/Darter/Mayfly ID?

Flew into the polytunnel for a while 
Replies: 6    Views: 355
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: 815
Last Post: 01/06/2014 at 17:42

Deep Down & Dirty: The Science of soil

Replies: 4    Views: 452
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: 509
Last Post: 22/04/2014 at 10:58

Seed grown Wisteria finally in flower - Hooray!

Planted many years ago 
Replies: 3    Views: 264
Last Post: 15/04/2014 at 12:39


Polytunnel growing 
Replies: 16    Views: 565
Last Post: 16/04/2014 at 19:05

First day of (meteorological) Spring

How id your garden looking 
Replies: 13    Views: 586
Last Post: 03/03/2014 at 20:31

DIY heated propagator

Making one from scratch 
Replies: 48    Views: 4616
Last Post: 30/06/2014 at 19:57

Cost of bird food

bulk vs supermarket 
Replies: 31    Views: 1817
Last Post: 10/02/2014 at 12:33
1 to 15 of 25 threads