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Latest posts by BobTheGardener

Talkback: How to build a raised bed

Posted: 31/03/2013 at 18:36

Hi a4, See the other thread you posted on, regarding safety.  I actually have used pressure- treated gravel boards for some of my own raised beds, but be aware that soil is very heavy (particularly when wet) and standard 19mm thick gravel boards aren't really strong enough.  I used a double thickness of them, overlapped so that the long edges of each plank aren't in the same place, to help prevent bowing.  You'll need to have strong 2" (50mm) vertical stakes at the corners and at about every 400mm along the length of each side to support the weight of wet soil behind.

Talkback: How to build a raised vegetable bed

Posted: 31/03/2013 at 18:24

A4, Treated timber used to contain arsenic, copper and chromium, but their use in wood preserving treatment methods has been long since banned.  If you are using new pressure treated timber, it should be fine.  Using reclaimed treated timber could pose a slight risk as it may have been treated with one of the banned substances, although it would be rather old timber by now (I seem to recall the ban came into effect in the 1980s.)


Posted: 30/03/2013 at 22:23

Hi Rosemarie, have a look here, which is a pretty good summary of what to do:


advice on taking Geranium cuttings

Posted: 30/03/2013 at 16:20

Alan, have a look at this video which shows you how to do it.  Ignore/skip the advert at the start:


Why I never buy online

Posted: 30/03/2013 at 00:22

I agree with many of the points, but also with Verdun regarding choice - the average GC cannot hope to match the multitude of varieties available online from specialist nurseries.  For bedding plants and gardening sundries etc (many of which are available much cheaper online), I always go to the local GC to try and help them stay in business.

I've found the condition and packaging of plants sent by post to be very good on the whole and on the rare occasion when there has been a problem it has always been quickly put right usually with profuse apologies (and often freebie/voucher etc) from the supplier.


Posted: 30/03/2013 at 00:05

Rain, I should also say that you need to prepare the ground well by digging in plenty of compost, preferably leaf mould if you have any,before planting.


Posted: 29/03/2013 at 23:02

I think we are pretty much saying the same thing anyway, Verdun.  I also find the orientalis are much less fussy.


Posted: 29/03/2013 at 22:34

Still just buds on the Forsythia here (E.mids) with snowdrops still in full bloom and only 3 or 4 dwarf daffs showing (out of hundreds still in bud!)  I also like Ribes - that is also still only buds.

Just call me buddy, buddies!


Posted: 29/03/2013 at 22:30

Hellebores are woodland plants, so normally grow under dappled shade from trees.  They need moist soil.  However, as long as you don't plant them in full sun on light soil which is prone to drying out, they should be fine.  I have a couple of H. Niger in an East-facing border which is shaded by a garage to the South,  so I would say either spot would be fine, so choose the one with the dampest soil.

More plants needed

Posted: 29/03/2013 at 22:03

I agree, Busy-Lizzie - I use Geranium wallichianum 'Buxton's Variety' all around my garden.  It's fast growing, has both pretty leaves and flowers and it makes a great low-growing ground-cover.

Discussions started by BobTheGardener

Anyone for squirrel crumble?

Thieving rodents 
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Last Post: Today at 15:41

Plant ID quizzes

Have fun identifying plants! 
Replies: 16    Views: 372
Last Post: 14/09/2014 at 13:17

Watering dried-out pots

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

Blackfly - ladybirds to the rescue!

Broad bean tip blackfly infestation 
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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! 
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Last Post: 05/07/2014 at 18:52

Lovely surprise

I went down the garden in the gloom.. 
Replies: 15    Views: 502
Last Post: 18/06/2014 at 14:32

Dragonfly/Darter/Mayfly ID?

Flew into the polytunnel for a while 
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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: 692
Last Post: 01/06/2014 at 17:42

Deep Down & Dirty: The Science of soil

Replies: 4    Views: 412
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: 485
Last Post: 22/04/2014 at 10:58

Seed grown Wisteria finally in flower - Hooray!

Planted many years ago 
Replies: 3    Views: 246
Last Post: 15/04/2014 at 12:39


Polytunnel growing 
Replies: 16    Views: 542
Last Post: 16/04/2014 at 19:05

First day of (meteorological) Spring

How id your garden looking 
Replies: 13    Views: 557
Last Post: 03/03/2014 at 20:31

DIY heated propagator

Making one from scratch 
Replies: 48    Views: 4236
Last Post: 30/06/2014 at 19:57

Cost of bird food

bulk vs supermarket 
Replies: 31    Views: 1715
Last Post: 10/02/2014 at 12:33
1 to 15 of 25 threads