Latest posts by BobTheGardener

tastiest cherry tomatoes to grow recommendations?

Posted: 12/12/2015 at 14:32

Sungold (F1): (yellow) excellent flavour but they are very sweet which not everyone prefers.  Extremely reliable - these usually crop first and are the last to finish for me.

Suncherry Premium (F1): as above but red and slightly less sweet.

Last year I also bought a cherry tomato plant collection as well as my usual dozen or so varieties from seed.  It was the Sun plant collection from Mr Fothergills.  They were ALL fantastic with my favourite being 'sunpeach' which has all of the flavour of sungold and suncherry but not as sweet.

Anyone done any gardening today?

Posted: 11/12/2015 at 22:27

Had the day off today and luckily the weather was pretty good so got a lot done.

Dug up about 20 summer raspberry canes which have been slowly encroaching into my veg plot over the last few years.  Did the same with some blackberry canes which had popped-up in the middle of some gooseberry bushes and also gave the gooseberries a good prune.  Potted about 600 bulbs which I got on various special offers for next to nothing, including alliums, parrot tulips, iris, ioxa and anemones.  Cleared the greenhouse of about 20 dead tomato vines and put the pots of bulbs in there which should help speed them along after being planted so late.  Cleared a dozen sweet pepper plants and spread the spent compost on the borders, weeding as I went. 

Bit tired now!  


Posted: 08/12/2015 at 01:12

One possibility that you probably don't want to hear is Honey fungus.  If the problem started at one point and is spreading along the row then HF is a possibility.  The fact that seedlings are also affected is one thing which makes me suspect this damaging fungal disease.

Talkback: What to prune in winter

Posted: 08/12/2015 at 01:05

LoopyLoo, don't prune your plum tree until early spring or (preferably) midsummer or you risk it getting 'silver leaf' which is a nasty fungal disease which infects stone fruit trees in their dormant season and may kill it.  If you absolutely must cut it back, then remove a minimal amount now and then cut those same branches back in spring or  summer.  That way you should remove any infected wood before it spreads throughout the tree.  You can cut branches back to a side shoot or close to the trunk.  See the RHS advice here:


Swede and Sprouts just not growing

Posted: 06/12/2015 at 21:18

Sounds like a combination of late planting, lack of nutrients and probably less than ideal weather.  I sow brassicas in early March and plant out when they have 5 true leaves.  Brassicas also tend to do better in heavy soils.  For next year, I would try adding as much well-rotted farmyard manure as you can lay your hands on which will provide the missing nutrients and also help retain water - brassicas don't like soil drying out.  The bagged stuff from garden centres is fine if you can't get it locally.  My own brussels are (unusually) a bit small this year too which I'm putting down to lack of enough sunshine in my area this year.

piccolo tomatoes

Posted: 06/12/2015 at 20:56

Fermenting the seeds for 3 days gets rid of the jelly-like coating which stops the seeds sticking together, so is optional.  It's the way recommended by the realseeds site.  Some sites say piccolo is an F1 hybrid so won't come true from seed but there are many reports of folk saving seeds from supermarket bought piccolo and finding they do come true, so definitely worth trying.  Because it's a commercially grown variety I suspect it's now been bred to be stable.


Anyone done any gardening today?

Posted: 06/12/2015 at 15:34

Well done wonks!  The sun almost came out here so I removed dahlias from their large pots, stored them and planted about 100 tulips in the vacated pots.   Also did a bit more tidying up and weeding - removed lots of field buttercup and dandelions which had become evident after the foliage of the hardy perennials had died back.  They came up very easily because of the recent rain. 

How to tell if a rose is a climber?

Posted: 05/12/2015 at 17:53

It looks like one of the 'old garden rose' family, many of which are considered to be climbers.  I'm no rose expert but there's some interesting info here which may help:

I have a couple of moss roses which were here when I moved in 30-odd years ago and love them, especially as they seem to be the only ones I have which don't get diseases.

Passion Flowers

Posted: 04/12/2015 at 16:10

Hi Jan, ideally they should be pruned immediately after flowering, cutting each flowered shoot back to leave 2 buds after the point the shoot emerges from the main stem.  They can take a hard pruning if overgrown, but leave that until spring.  More advice from the RHS here:


Gardening Vices ......

Posted: 04/12/2015 at 15:17

The replies of Pansyface and Nut sound rather too familiar! -  I've just planted out 36 'spare' primroses in 3" pots which I had shoved in a corner when I ran out of room last year..  Also walking about visually planning (ok, pottering!) too much and finding myself unable to make a decision so ending up doing nothing.   Quite relaxing though!

Discussions started by BobTheGardener


Hope it finds it's way home 
Replies: 3    Views: 300
Last Post: 26/04/2016 at 18:22

Vine weevils

..ate all of my winter carrots! 
Replies: 8    Views: 1105
Last Post: 01/01/2016 at 22:01

Huge pest problem

Don't think netting will work 
Replies: 10    Views: 739
Last Post: 19/12/2015 at 21:00

Renovate or remove privet hedge?

Replace or cut back hard? 
Replies: 19    Views: 1373
Last Post: 20/09/2015 at 13:33


No real rain here for weeks 
Replies: 11    Views: 555
Last Post: 07/06/2015 at 18:41

Little Red Devils (Lily beetles)

They're about now! 
Replies: 1    Views: 576
Last Post: 06/04/2015 at 17:03

Christmas has come early

New trees 
Replies: 9    Views: 1178
Last Post: 19/12/2014 at 16:52

Anyone for squirrel crumble?

Thieving rodents 
Replies: 12    Views: 973
Last Post: 27/11/2014 at 21:12

Plant ID quizzes

Have fun identifying plants! 
Replies: 16    Views: 962
Last Post: 14/09/2014 at 13:17

Watering dried-out pots

Tip to help to stop water running straight through 
Replies: 13    Views: 904
Last Post: 28/07/2014 at 12:28

Blackfly - ladybirds to the rescue!

Broad bean tip blackfly infestation 
Replies: 2    Views: 789
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: 655
Last Post: 05/07/2014 at 18:52

Lovely surprise

I went down the garden in the gloom.. 
Replies: 15    Views: 1068
Last Post: 18/06/2014 at 14:32

Dragonfly/Darter/Mayfly ID?

Flew into the polytunnel for a while 
Replies: 6    Views: 942
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: 1431
Last Post: 01/06/2014 at 17:42
1 to 15 of 32 threads