London (change)
Today 20°C / 15°C
Tomorrow 20°C / 13°C

BobTheGardener


Latest posts by BobTheGardener

Kale & Beans

Posted: 05/07/2014 at 12:40

Sounds odd to me too.  Beans fix Nitrogen and Kale needs that.  Companion planting (there are two definitions of that - one is for pest control and the other is entirely different and is for nutrient sharing) is often used with the oldest known one being "3 sisters" where you plant sweetcorn (need N and provides natural 'poles' for the beans), climbing beans (fix N) and squash (living mulch to reduce weeds and shade roots) all together in the same place, usually a mound.

I've done it many times and it does work.

The only negative concerns crop rotation.  This is important to prevent pest and disease build-up in the soil.  I found this to be more important in the long run so no longer use the nutrient-sharing type of companion planting except with sweetcorn when I always plant beans with them as they can be trained to support the corn by intertwining between stems, completely eliminating the need for poles and string.

Lots of experimenting has been done in my garden over many years - can you tell?

Bubbles in canal

Posted: 04/07/2014 at 21:45
pansyface wrote (see)
Maybe the barge stirred up some rotting organic matter on the bed of the canal.

Definitely this.

Which netting /mesh for growing brassicas?

Posted: 04/07/2014 at 19:19

Holes no larger than 7mm is standard protection against cabbage white butterflies.  I use this stuff - now 4 years old and still strong with no rips (a problem with cheaper stuff is that it gets affected by sunlight and falls apart after a year or two):

http://www.harrodhorticultural.com/heavy-duty-butterfly-netting-pid7526.html

No connection - just a satisfied customer.

Don't plant your brassicas too close to the sides though, whichever netting you use as they just lay eggs on those leaves which are touching the net!

crab apple trees

Posted: 04/07/2014 at 19:08

One of the best is John Downie - pink buds, white flowers and lots of red fruit.  I'm sure other forum members can also recommend varieties.

not enough bees

Posted: 03/07/2014 at 21:23

You could try spraying them with water as this is an age-old tip which is supposed to help setting.  Don't blast the flowers off though - some hose attachments can be a bit too strong!

please identify

Posted: 03/07/2014 at 20:56

If my ID is correct, it's a goodie and eats mealybugs.  If Fidget is right, it's a baddie.

We need another opinion methinks. 

The mealybug ladybird is being used for biological control, so it's a possible escapee from a nursery etc.

please identify

Posted: 03/07/2014 at 20:43

Looks like a Cryptolaemus montrouzieri larva (mealybug ladybird larva) but they seem to be endemic to Australia or New Zealand - where are you?

Potato blight

Posted: 03/07/2014 at 20:36

If the stems are still green and are yet to be affected (ie only the leaves have symptoms) you can pull the haulms up and the spuds can stay in the ground and harvested as needed because they shouldn't be affected.  If the stems near the ground are blighted, then best lift the whole lot and eat those spuds which aren't affected asap.

Strawberrys

Posted: 03/07/2014 at 00:01

More runners should soon appear Kweegly, so don't worry. 

John Innes Homebase lies perhaps

Posted: 02/07/2014 at 18:44

Yeah, it's meaningless.  They could have made a batch of compost, perfectly formulated to one of the JI standards (which one though?!) but then only added a teaspoonful!

Discussions started by BobTheGardener

Watering dried-out pots

Tip to help to stop water running straight through 
Replies: 13    Views: 277
Last Post: 28/07/2014 at 12:28

Blackfly - ladybirds to the rescue!

Broad bean tip blackfly infestation 
Replies: 2    Views: 138
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: 127
Last Post: 05/07/2014 at 18:52

Lovely surprise

I went down the garden in the gloom.. 
Replies: 15    Views: 438
Last Post: 18/06/2014 at 14:32

Dragonfly/Darter/Mayfly ID?

Flew into the polytunnel for a while 
Replies: 6    Views: 247
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: 488
Last Post: 01/06/2014 at 17:42

Deep Down & Dirty: The Science of soil

Replies: 4    Views: 328
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: 396
Last Post: 22/04/2014 at 10:58

Seed grown Wisteria finally in flower - Hooray!

Planted many years ago 
Replies: 3    Views: 193
Last Post: 15/04/2014 at 12:39

Oops!

Polytunnel growing 
Replies: 16    Views: 490
Last Post: 16/04/2014 at 19:05

First day of (meteorological) Spring

How id your garden looking 
Replies: 13    Views: 501
Last Post: 03/03/2014 at 20:31

DIY heated propagator

Making one from scratch 
Replies: 48    Views: 3519
Last Post: 30/06/2014 at 19:57

Cost of bird food

bulk vs supermarket 
Replies: 31    Views: 1443
Last Post: 10/02/2014 at 12:33

Wild Garden (Community Channel)

On Freeview/Sky 
Replies: 5    Views: 457
Last Post: 10/12/2013 at 12:21

Front garden revamp - before and after photos

Redsigning weedy crazy paving 
Replies: 24    Views: 1631
Last Post: 21/10/2013 at 20:16
1 to 15 of 23 threads