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Latest posts by BobTheGardener

Damson or plum........

Posted: 20/07/2015 at 19:57

Fritillary, you should remove most of them but leave a few if you want a few new branches, in which case prune them back by about a 1/3rd which will encourage them to produce fruiting spurs.  You can try pulling the unwanted water shoots off with a sharp tug - if you are lucky they will come away and there is less chance of them growing back when you do that, otherwise cut them off almost flush with the branch they are growing from. Yes, apples (and pears) also produce this type of growth when pruned heavily.

Thornless Fruit Bushes

Posted: 20/07/2015 at 19:24

Yes, blueberries are all thornless but do require acid soil - all of mine are grown in containers with a 50/50 mix of ericaceous compost and John Innes No 3.  Jostaberries are also thornless and worth growing as a cross between gooseberry and blackcurrant.

Blue spinach seeds?

Posted: 19/07/2015 at 23:38

Some seeds are available with a coating to either help you sow them individually more easily or germinate/grow more successfully.  The bright colour is to help you see them so you can space them out appropriately.  I've not seen spinach but have used carrot seeds like that.  Here's a web page from a company which makes them:


Damson or plum........

Posted: 19/07/2015 at 17:24

It (big trees shading things out) happens as gardens mature Jo.   Glad I don't have a sycamore but do have ash trees so still have lots of seedings to keep pulling up!  Good luck with the baby plum - it will take a few years to fruit so perhaps try and keep the old plum going until then.  As long as you don't prune it really hard you should be able to keep on top of the water shoots.

Anyone know what this is please?

Posted: 19/07/2015 at 16:19

Acanthus mollis (Bear's breeches)

Raspberry worms?

Posted: 19/07/2015 at 15:37

Pretty much, yes.  Make sure you pick every fruit though as the lifecycle of the beetle involves the grubs dropping to the ground when they emerge from the ripe fruit and burying themselves where they pupate, ready to emerge as adults next year and which will lay eggs on the young flowers.  If you can break that cycle it should reduce damage next year.  One way of doing that is to lift some of the new canes, wash the soil from their roots and plant in another part of the garden.

I'm with Dove on the Autumn fruiting ones (Polka is excellent) for the same reason!

Damson or plum........

Posted: 19/07/2015 at 15:28

Plums fruit on old wood, so any pruning will mean losing some of next year's harvest.  Now is the best time to renovate an old tree but you need to do it over several years and control the 'water shoots' (lots of vertical growth) which will follow any hard pruning by cutting most of them back next summer.  More advice on the RHS site:

Is the tree shaded by another larger tree nearby (that's what it looks like in the photo)?  If so, the reason it has grown like this is that it it searching for light and you could consider reducing the crown of the larger tree.  If that isn't practical then it might be best to sacrifice it and plant a new plum where it will get full sunlight.

CLG Roses

Posted: 18/07/2015 at 18:51

Just short for 'climbing' I think nitram.

Architectural plant help needed

Posted: 18/07/2015 at 18:03

If you could put a couple of posts in a few inches from the wall with trellis between them, you would be able to plant a climber if you wanted an evergreen clematis or an ivy etc.

Butternut Squash Plant is, well .... squashed!

Posted: 18/07/2015 at 15:34

Something in the soil eating the roots like vine weevil grubs?  You could try tipping the soil out onto a sheet of plastic etc and look for small white C shaped grubs like the image at the bottom of the RHS page:


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1 to 15 of 29 threads