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Latest posts by BobTheGardener


Posted: 05/05/2014 at 10:14

I have about a dozen Stacey and one of them looks just like yours this year.  I wonder if it could be vine weevil?  Let me know if you find any when you re-pot and I'll do the same to my poorly one!

Help needed - Fungus in garden

Posted: 05/05/2014 at 10:10

There's no cure as such.  Pre-treated wood will last longer but will eventually succumb to one of the thousands of types of fungi (only a laboratory could definitely ID which one.)  However, it could last another 5 years before falling apart completely.  The only real solution is replacement - pre-treated wood can last 15 years but if in permanent contact with wet soil it can be much less.  That's why railway sleepers used to be soaked in boiling tar, which makes them last for decades.  Unfortunately, it was found to be rather toxic and carcinogenic, so you can't generally find them for domestic use any longer.

Is my wisteria going to strangle my tree?

Posted: 05/05/2014 at 09:57

Nutcutlet is perfectly correct - the only living part of a tree trunk is a thin layer of cells just under the bark (sometimes only one cell thick!) known as the cambium.  If this gets restricted all the way around the trunk, the tree will die.  See here for an explanation:



Posted: 04/05/2014 at 21:06

They are 'farming' aphids Lisa.  The ants feed off the sugary waste the aphids produce as they suck the sap of the tree.  You can apply a grease band to stop the ants - I use a thick layer of Vaseline around the trunk of my apple trees to stop them.  The ants also carry young aphids to new leaves.  Don't forget to kill the aphids now you know they are present - a spray with soapy water will do the trick.  

Sweet pepper seed germination - epic failure!

Posted: 04/05/2014 at 11:24

Better to use a windowsill indoors that an unheated greenhouse, NannyG.  The type of seed trays with a clear lid are best.  Chilies and peppers need higher night time temperatures than you will get in a cold greenhouse at this time of the year.

Honeyberry flower bud or fruit

Posted: 04/05/2014 at 11:13

Agreed, young fruit (lucky you!)   The slight purple on the leaves means it got a bit dry at some stage, probably during delivery.

woolly aphid?

Posted: 04/05/2014 at 11:06

As it's an indoor plant, I'd spray with Provado ultimate bug killer, which is systemic and will be absorbed into the plant so is guaranteed to kill them.  Being indoors, there is no chance of the spray harming bees or other wildlife so I have no qualms about using it on pernicious pests on houseplants.


Posted: 04/05/2014 at 11:02

I got a couple of mine from Parkers as they were the cheapest - they are Lonicera Kamtschatica which I think is the most common one but they were very small plants.  I can't remember where the others came from though, maybe Crocus.  Primrose have both Kamtschatica and Moreno as 3 year olds in 3l pots, so perhaps get one of each then you're guaranteed at least 2 types?

What have I done?

Posted: 03/05/2014 at 21:58

Seeing Save after Upload is normal Berkley.


Unidentified insect

Posted: 03/05/2014 at 19:31

I think it's Brown scale - I have them on my Japanese plum but they like a whole range of shrubs:


Discussions started by BobTheGardener

Anyone for squirrel crumble?

Thieving rodents 
Replies: 5    Views: 195
Last Post: 25/10/2014 at 22:29

Plant ID quizzes

Have fun identifying plants! 
Replies: 16    Views: 379
Last Post: 14/09/2014 at 13:17

Watering dried-out pots

Tip to help to stop water running straight through 
Replies: 13    Views: 342
Last Post: 28/07/2014 at 12:28

Blackfly - ladybirds to the rescue!

Broad bean tip blackfly infestation 
Replies: 2    Views: 203
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: 188
Last Post: 05/07/2014 at 18:52

Lovely surprise

I went down the garden in the gloom.. 
Replies: 15    Views: 507
Last Post: 18/06/2014 at 14:32

Dragonfly/Darter/Mayfly ID?

Flew into the polytunnel for a while 
Replies: 6    Views: 320
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: 710
Last Post: 01/06/2014 at 17:42

Deep Down & Dirty: The Science of soil

Replies: 4    Views: 415
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: 487
Last Post: 22/04/2014 at 10:58

Seed grown Wisteria finally in flower - Hooray!

Planted many years ago 
Replies: 3    Views: 248
Last Post: 15/04/2014 at 12:39


Polytunnel growing 
Replies: 16    Views: 545
Last Post: 16/04/2014 at 19:05

First day of (meteorological) Spring

How id your garden looking 
Replies: 13    Views: 562
Last Post: 03/03/2014 at 20:31

DIY heated propagator

Making one from scratch 
Replies: 48    Views: 4310
Last Post: 30/06/2014 at 19:57

Cost of bird food

bulk vs supermarket 
Replies: 31    Views: 1735
Last Post: 10/02/2014 at 12:33
1 to 15 of 25 threads