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Latest posts by BobTheGardener

Spring sweethearts

Posted: 07/04/2013 at 22:58

Some beautiful photos everyone!  Here's my humble effort.  Only mini daffs, about the same size as the snowdrops, but they really made me smile this morning.


What has happened???

Posted: 07/04/2013 at 22:27

I know what you mean, chicky!  My 'Lizzie' early plum has had flower buds on for nearly 2 months and I don't think she can hold it in much longer, poor thing!

Our own A to Z of our Gardening

Posted: 07/04/2013 at 15:12

I'll have a go at Aquilegia:

Aquilegia are an unfussy, hardy and long-lived perennial that thrives in most soils and aspects.  They come in a wide variety of flower shapes and colours and are easy to grow from seed, which can be sown as soon as it is collected or in the spring.  Growing your own can be rewarding, but be aware that they very readily cross-pollinate and don't come true from collected seed, but worthwhile new variants often arise so you can have a plant that is completely unique to you!

Excellent varieties are available commercially and some of my favourite large flowered varieties from seed are aquilegia caerulea (blue/white) and McKana Giant hybrids (mixed colours.)



Bee spotting

Posted: 07/04/2013 at 14:45

Thanks for the great photo's Cheery!

If anyone is interested in identifying the bees they see, here are a few web links:

General Bee ID:


Solitary bees:

Honey bees:


mulching advice please

Posted: 07/04/2013 at 13:40

If in doubt, compost it first for at least 6 months.  This will break down any growth-retarding natural chemicals that the leaves may contain.  If you don't have a compost heap, you could put  the shreddings into a black bin liner, wet them, tie the bag closed and poke a few holes in it, then hide behind a shrub etc. for a year. That's how I make my leaf-mould, too.

using ash from wood and brickettes in the garden

Posted: 07/04/2013 at 13:32

Wood ash is good for use around the garden but avoid using it on any plants which prefer acid conditions as it is alkaline.  I would advise against using the briquette ash though as it may contain traces of heavy metals which are not good for plants or animals, including us.

Plants to avoid using the wood ash on include (but are not limited to): Acer, Azalea, Camelia, Heather, Rhododendron, Blueberry, Cranberry, Raspberry, Apple, Grape, Strawberry, Potato.  If you aren't sure about a particular plant, use google and search for the plant name and add "growing conditions" to see if it prefers acid soil (pH lower than 6.5) - if so, avoid using the wood ash on it.

Rhubarb in pots

Posted: 06/04/2013 at 20:19

Hi lavenderlass, check that you haven't accidentaly clicked 'Ignore' on your own avatar.

To fix it, go to Settings and unignore yourself.

Good news about the rhubarb!


PS, the site 'my posts' thing is currently broken for everyone - they are working on a fix.

Good Evening FORKERS

Posted: 06/04/2013 at 18:46

Great weather and got a lot done.

The 72 bedding plugs which arrived this morning turned into well over 100 when potted-on into modules as many of them had more than one plant so I separated those which would easily come apart. The tomatoes which came up earlier this week spent the day in the GH and look really healthy, with he sungold now showing true leaves - I'll bring 'em indoors tonight though.  Also got a cheap rhubarb from wilko, so that's gone in the ground today, too.


Posted: 06/04/2013 at 18:36

Hi Maureen, yes but mix it in well othewise it may take a long time to rot down.  Large amounts may attract vermin too, so I wouldn't add more than a pound or so in one go.

plum trees - problems

Posted: 06/04/2013 at 15:50

Hi Ina, it's still a bit early for many varieties of plum, particularly the late cropping ones.  Hopefully you have small buds visible?  What variety is it?

Discussions started by BobTheGardener

Anyone for squirrel crumble?

Thieving rodents 
Replies: 12    Views: 375
Last Post: 27/11/2014 at 21:12

Plant ID quizzes

Have fun identifying plants! 
Replies: 16    Views: 409
Last Post: 14/09/2014 at 13:17

Watering dried-out pots

Tip to help to stop water running straight through 
Replies: 13    Views: 363
Last Post: 28/07/2014 at 12:28

Blackfly - ladybirds to the rescue!

Broad bean tip blackfly infestation 
Replies: 2    Views: 231
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: 210
Last Post: 05/07/2014 at 18:52

Lovely surprise

I went down the garden in the gloom.. 
Replies: 15    Views: 530
Last Post: 18/06/2014 at 14:32

Dragonfly/Darter/Mayfly ID?

Flew into the polytunnel for a while 
Replies: 6    Views: 362
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: 834
Last Post: 01/06/2014 at 17:42

Deep Down & Dirty: The Science of soil

Replies: 4    Views: 460
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: 515
Last Post: 22/04/2014 at 10:58

Seed grown Wisteria finally in flower - Hooray!

Planted many years ago 
Replies: 3    Views: 267
Last Post: 15/04/2014 at 12:39


Polytunnel growing 
Replies: 16    Views: 570
Last Post: 16/04/2014 at 19:05

First day of (meteorological) Spring

How id your garden looking 
Replies: 13    Views: 593
Last Post: 03/03/2014 at 20:31

DIY heated propagator

Making one from scratch 
Replies: 48    Views: 4672
Last Post: 30/06/2014 at 19:57

Cost of bird food

bulk vs supermarket 
Replies: 31    Views: 1850
Last Post: 10/02/2014 at 12:33
1 to 15 of 25 threads