Latest posts by BobTheGardener


Posted: 13/03/2013 at 19:08

How to 'prune' leylandii:

Take one chainsaw.  Hard 'prune' to ground.  Pile 'prunings' in big heap.  Set fire to heap and dance around fire while laughing maniacally!

WEATHER this week

Posted: 13/03/2013 at 19:02

Just had 4 bare-root magnolia trees delivered.  I had 4 bags of ericaceous ready for them, but just found the bags are frozen solid.  Typical!  Fortunately, the roots are wrapped, so they should survive until the weekend by which time the compost will (hopefully) have thawed enough to plant them!

Wisteria not flowering why?

Posted: 13/03/2013 at 18:54

Fully agree with Dove.  I grew 2 wisteria from seed over 10 years ago and neither has yet flowered, despite being fed and pruned properly.  If anyone is interested in having a wisteria, I would highly recommend only buying one which is actually in flower in a garden centre.  That way you know what colour the flowers are and how fragrant they are.  Seed grown wisteria are extremely variable in those areas, and the 'good doers' are almost all grafted.  I'm now seriously considering buying a wisteria in flower and grafting pieces on to the ones I grew from seed, effectively demoting them to mere rootstock!


Posted: 12/03/2013 at 22:21
nutcutlet wrote (see)

Can't think of anything that starts green, goes black, then yellow though

A bruise?

Plastic sprayers.

Posted: 11/03/2013 at 19:05

Same problem as everyone else.  Hand sprayers are possibly the most unreliable gardening product on the shelves!  The only one of mine which keeps working reliably is a pump-up type which cost a small fortune.

pepper plants

Posted: 11/03/2013 at 18:52

Good luck, Lyn - all we can hope for is a decent amount of sunshine this year - they definitely need that (but don't we all!)

pepper plants

Posted: 11/03/2013 at 18:44

Hi Lyn, no, but I do hand-pollinate all flowers.  Another thing which helps with peppers & chillis is to re-pot them several times as they grow.  Start them in small 3" pots and re-pot into 5" then 7", then 10" as the roots reach the sides of each size.  Planting them directly from 3" to 10" pots (or into growbags or greenhouse borders) seems to temporarily stunt their growth somewhat.  The best crops I ever had were when I started them early (end of Feb) and kept them above 20C at all times, but that was an expensive thing to do (I kept the conservatory heated with a temperature controlled fan heater) and isn't something I will ever consider again, given the cost of energy now.

Camelia - why are buds only on lower branches

Posted: 10/03/2013 at 18:00

Hi Tony, while camelia can flower on new growth, it takes the best part of a year for the new wood to mature enough, so when it was pruned will affect this.  The best time to prune it is immediately after flowering which give the new growth that pruning encourages time to mature.  If you did prune it at the right time last year, the lack of flowers may be down to the poor summer we had or it may need feeding.

Currant bushes

Posted: 09/03/2013 at 12:34

Yes, that's the best way to plant a blackcurrent.  However, for the redcurrent, cut back any branches that are hanging less than 3" above the soil to the stem, and shorten all other branches by a third.

lawn improvement

Posted: 09/03/2013 at 12:26

Hi Chris, I removed my lawns several years ago as I honestly felt they took far too much work for such little return on my clay soil.  They were replaced with bark, underplanted with all sorts of things including early bulbs (eg snowdrops, fritillaries, aconites, lots of different miniature narcissi/daffodils), celendine, hardy geraniums, various hardy cyclamen.  No work needed at all now other than spreading a bit of fresh bark every couple of years or so.  Just something to consider, although I do understand those who actually like a bit of lawn, even though I don't miss it one iota!

Discussions started by BobTheGardener

Plant ID quizzes

Have fun identifying plants! 
Replies: 16    Views: 328
Last Post: 14/09/2014 at 13:17

Watering dried-out pots

Tip to help to stop water running straight through 
Replies: 13    Views: 308
Last Post: 28/07/2014 at 12:28

Blackfly - ladybirds to the rescue!

Broad bean tip blackfly infestation 
Replies: 2    Views: 169
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: 157
Last Post: 05/07/2014 at 18:52

Lovely surprise

I went down the garden in the gloom.. 
Replies: 15    Views: 475
Last Post: 18/06/2014 at 14:32

Dragonfly/Darter/Mayfly ID?

Flew into the polytunnel for a while 
Replies: 6    Views: 284
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: 547
Last Post: 01/06/2014 at 17:42

Deep Down & Dirty: The Science of soil

Replies: 4    Views: 366
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: 448
Last Post: 22/04/2014 at 10:58

Seed grown Wisteria finally in flower - Hooray!

Planted many years ago 
Replies: 3    Views: 213
Last Post: 15/04/2014 at 12:39


Polytunnel growing 
Replies: 16    Views: 521
Last Post: 16/04/2014 at 19:05

First day of (meteorological) Spring

How id your garden looking 
Replies: 13    Views: 528
Last Post: 03/03/2014 at 20:31

DIY heated propagator

Making one from scratch 
Replies: 48    Views: 3878
Last Post: 30/06/2014 at 19:57

Cost of bird food

bulk vs supermarket 
Replies: 31    Views: 1627
Last Post: 10/02/2014 at 12:33

Wild Garden (Community Channel)

On Freeview/Sky 
Replies: 5    Views: 486
Last Post: 10/12/2013 at 12:21
1 to 15 of 24 threads