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BobTheGardener


Latest posts by BobTheGardener

ORNAMENTAL APPLE TREE

Posted: 28/11/2013 at 18:47

Hi Nadger, Yes that is young and it is important to prune it properly in the early years to help it form a good shape.  Prune it when completely dormant - if it still has any leaves on, leave it for a while - I usually do mine in January/February, but never during a prolonged hard frost.  For both ornamental and edible apples, the pruning is the same when they are young.  Cut each branch back by about a third to half, to a bud facing in the direction you want it to grow (usually that's an outward facing one.)

Branches which are pruned will have stronger growth next year than any which you don't prune, so although it seems illogical, if the tree is growing weakly on one side, prune that side harder.

Here's the RHS advice on pruning young apples:

http://apps.rhs.org.uk/AdviceSearch/profile.aspx?PID=164

and the diagrams here may help:

http://www.gardenaction.co.uk/fruit_veg_diary/fruit_veg_mini_project_september_2d_apple.asp

 

 

If you could invent something...

Posted: 27/11/2013 at 23:09

Great idea, Dove - I'll sign-up for a tardis-shed right now!

How about trowels and secateurs which emit a beep when you click a remote on your key-ring so you can find them in the garden?  I spend ages looking for mine after leaving them somewhere after getting distracted! 

Peppers

Posted: 27/11/2013 at 22:54

Hi David, while you can overwinter peppers, they do need to be kept warmer than in an unheated greenhouse.  I've done it by keeping them in a back room of the house where it never dropped below about 15C but I wouldn't say it was really worth it as ones grown from seed actually did better that year.  Due to the cold Spring this year, there wasn't really a long enough warm period to successfully grow peppers outdoors - they need quite a long season.  To be sure of a crop in the uk we really need to grow them in a greenhouse although it's fine to take them out into the open during the height of the Summer.

When do I plant lily of the valley

Posted: 27/11/2013 at 19:31

Isn't that the truth - sometimes I think they do it just to tease us!

When do I plant lily of the valley

Posted: 27/11/2013 at 18:23

As nut says, they're very hardy but can be temperamental.  Some folk have real trouble getting them to establish while for others they become invasive.  Doesn't seem to be much middle ground!

Daffodils suitable for heavy soil

Posted: 26/11/2013 at 19:25

Hi Lewis,  I garden on heavy clay and think the display will look fine next Spring.  The tulips probably won't come back very well the year after but the daffodils will probably love it.  Some of the crocus types will do well, others may flag in subsequent years.  Some large red or yellow tulips might repeat well depending on type, but I have to treat most of the fancy ones as annuals.  Species tulips are a lot more tolerant:

http://www.gardenersworld.com/plants/features/wildlife/growing-species-tulips/1119.html

 

Freesias

Posted: 26/11/2013 at 18:41

I think it's down to the size/quality of the bulbs - if they're nice and fat you should be OK.  Mine looked a bit on the small side to be fair - will buy them from somewhere else next time!

ORNAMENTAL APPLE TREE

Posted: 26/11/2013 at 18:39

How old is the tree?

Huge Bee on Winter Clematis "Freckles"

Posted: 26/11/2013 at 18:36

That'll probably be a queen building up her reserves before hibernating.  Excellent photos!

Freesias

Posted: 26/11/2013 at 18:29

I planted some in a large pot in Spring and they did nothing until August when they finally sent up shoots.  They are about 10 inches tall now but no sign of a flower and  they've been in the conservatory since it started getting cold.  I'll either get flowers for Christmas or (far more likely) they'll continue to look like a bowl of wide grass until they die back!  No doubt if I chuck them on the compost heap they'll decide to flower!

Discussions started by BobTheGardener

Drought

No real rain here for weeks 
Replies: 11    Views: 201
Last Post: 07/06/2015 at 18:41

Little Red Devils (Lily beetles)

They're about now! 
Replies: 1    Views: 233
Last Post: 06/04/2015 at 17:03

Christmas has come early

New trees 
Replies: 9    Views: 848
Last Post: 19/12/2014 at 16:52

Anyone for squirrel crumble?

Thieving rodents 
Replies: 12    Views: 635
Last Post: 27/11/2014 at 21:12

Plant ID quizzes

Have fun identifying plants! 
Replies: 16    Views: 586
Last Post: 14/09/2014 at 13:17

Watering dried-out pots

Tip to help to stop water running straight through 
Replies: 13    Views: 541
Last Post: 28/07/2014 at 12:28

Blackfly - ladybirds to the rescue!

Broad bean tip blackfly infestation 
Replies: 2    Views: 410
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: 363
Last Post: 05/07/2014 at 18:52

Lovely surprise

I went down the garden in the gloom.. 
Replies: 15    Views: 672
Last Post: 18/06/2014 at 14:32

Dragonfly/Darter/Mayfly ID?

Flew into the polytunnel for a while 
Replies: 6    Views: 588
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: 1050
Last Post: 01/06/2014 at 17:42

Deep Down & Dirty: The Science of soil

Replies: 4    Views: 658
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: 975
Last Post: 22/04/2014 at 10:58

Seed grown Wisteria finally in flower - Hooray!

Planted many years ago 
Replies: 3    Views: 399
Last Post: 15/04/2014 at 12:39

Oops!

Polytunnel growing 
Replies: 16    Views: 727
Last Post: 16/04/2014 at 19:05
1 to 15 of 28 threads