London (change)
Today 12°C / 7°C
Tomorrow 12°C / 12°C


Latest posts by BobTheGardener

Butterfly sightings 2014

Posted: 30/03/2014 at 20:12

Lots of peacocks and small tortoiseshells about this weekend - most I could count at one time (tricky when they're all over the shop) was 12 (mainly peacocks.)  Also a very large brimstone.


Posted: 30/03/2014 at 20:02

Hi Rob,  Slug ID guide here:

Yours looks like a  grey field slug (aka Netted slug) to me.

tulip bulbs

Posted: 30/03/2014 at 14:25

Hi Marion, I have some yellow and some red which have been going since I moved here over 30 years ago but they are still in their nappies compared to yours!

Growing from seed

Posted: 30/03/2014 at 10:16

Hi little bee, I agree with the above.  It's important to remove the tops of propagator trays as soon as the seeds have germinated.  What I do is sow the seeds into the tray, water once from the bottom - as soon as the top of the compost starts to change colour they have had enough.  Put the top on and do no more watering until the seedlings show, then remove the top.  After that, water when the compost starts to dry out - I judge that by lifting the tray and feeling how heavy it is.

Carrots need direct sowing into their final growing position - they won't transplant well and even if they do survive being pricked-out, they will produce poor roots.  When carrot seedlings germinate, they send down a very thin but very long single root.  This becomes the carrot and it is virtually impossible to transplant them without damaging this root which can become 15cm long in a matter of days after germination.

Did you remember to turn your clocks back?

Posted: 30/03/2014 at 09:52

Is my evergreen dying?

Posted: 29/03/2014 at 21:40

If I had a similar space, I'd probably go for one of those narrow, tall flowering cherries called Prunus Amanogawa.  Always wanted one!

Help - is my evergreen dying?

Posted: 29/03/2014 at 15:38

See answer to your other identical question, Kelly.

Is my evergreen dying?

Posted: 29/03/2014 at 15:34

It's a fir tree of some kind.  Unfortunately, the brown sections are dead and won't regrow fresh green growth.  If you follow the brown down and find there are green shoots below, cut the brown section off just above where the healthy growth is.  If you're very, very, lucky the green shoots may grow and cover the bare parts you have now revealed.  However, in the vast majority of cases, the tree will continue to die back, so seriously consider removing it and seeing this as an opportunity to plant something else.

Stratification of Seeds

Posted: 27/03/2014 at 23:30

Most of the things I've read say six weeks but mine have been in about 4 and are coming out this weekend.  If nothing happens they can always go back in..


Posted: 27/03/2014 at 22:47

Whitefly in particular can be very difficult to control, especially if you have them at this time of the year.  As you clearly want to be as organic as possible, I think the answer for you is biological control using a parasitic wasp called encarsia formosa.  It's a bit too cold to use them right now, but it should be ok in a few weeks.  Not cheap but google should find you the best price.

Discussions started by BobTheGardener

Renovate or remove privet hedge?

Replace or cut back hard? 
Replies: 19    Views: 648
Last Post: 20/09/2015 at 13:33


No real rain here for weeks 
Replies: 11    Views: 327
Last Post: 07/06/2015 at 18:41

Little Red Devils (Lily beetles)

They're about now! 
Replies: 1    Views: 367
Last Post: 06/04/2015 at 17:03

Christmas has come early

New trees 
Replies: 9    Views: 962
Last Post: 19/12/2014 at 16:52

Anyone for squirrel crumble?

Thieving rodents 
Replies: 12    Views: 747
Last Post: 27/11/2014 at 21:12

Plant ID quizzes

Have fun identifying plants! 
Replies: 16    Views: 706
Last Post: 14/09/2014 at 13:17

Watering dried-out pots

Tip to help to stop water running straight through 
Replies: 13    Views: 664
Last Post: 28/07/2014 at 12:28

Blackfly - ladybirds to the rescue!

Broad bean tip blackfly infestation 
Replies: 2    Views: 532
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: 456
Last Post: 05/07/2014 at 18:52

Lovely surprise

I went down the garden in the gloom.. 
Replies: 15    Views: 788
Last Post: 18/06/2014 at 14:32

Dragonfly/Darter/Mayfly ID?

Flew into the polytunnel for a while 
Replies: 6    Views: 698
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: 1179
Last Post: 01/06/2014 at 17:42

Deep Down & Dirty: The Science of soil

Replies: 4    Views: 836
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: 1296
Last Post: 22/04/2014 at 10:58

Seed grown Wisteria finally in flower - Hooray!

Planted many years ago 
Replies: 3    Views: 510
Last Post: 15/04/2014 at 12:39
1 to 15 of 29 threads