London (change)
Today 10°C / 5°C
Tomorrow 10°C / 6°C

BobTheGardener


Latest posts by BobTheGardener

Magnolia died off

Posted: 24/06/2014 at 18:22

All you can do is keep it watered and hope.  There was a late frost here which killed all of the leaves and flowers on 4 of my young magnolias.  The ones which were planted 2 years ago have now recovered and grown new leaves but the two planted last Autumn are dead sticks and have now been pulled up.

Use your thumbnail to scrape a small amount of the outer bark from the trunk, starting at the top.  If it is still green underneath they are alive.  If brown, the wood is dead at that section, so move down a few inches and try again.  If brown all the way down there is no hope of recovery.  If you do find green tissue, cut all of the dead wood above it off, just above a bud if you can see one.

Garlic rust

Posted: 24/06/2014 at 00:22

It's now pretty much agreed that the culprit is Leek rust, as I've mentioned before.  See the RHS advice:

http://rhs.org.uk/advice/profile?pid=214

 

 

Has my broccoli bolted?

Posted: 23/06/2014 at 20:09

You are picking-up this gardening lark really quickly, OL!    All these little tricks and tips add-up and I'm sure you will have a better crop next year!   We all started off knowing virtually nothing, after all!

Has my broccoli bolted?

Posted: 23/06/2014 at 19:35

It happens to us all, OL, especially when there's a dry spell at a critical point in their development.  You can help by planting them deeper (up to the lowest leaves) when you transplant them, assuming you started them in trays or modules.  Do that when they have 4 or 5 true leaves.  Regular watering is also essential - if they dry out, it triggers them into flower (which is what the head is really.)

Has my broccoli bolted?

Posted: 23/06/2014 at 19:28

Yes, I think they have as they should have grown bigger than this before producing heads.  However, all may not be lost as they will produce side shoots.  Cut all of these early heads off now - you may have enough for a meal - and then side shoots should soon start to appear at the joints between leaves and stem.  If you only have a few plants it may not be worth it though as side shoots (aka spears) are always much smaller than the main head.

nettle feed

Posted: 22/06/2014 at 22:43

It's high in nitrates, so best for leafy veg like cabbage, lettuce etc.  Runner beans make their own so won't likely benefit much, but it certainly won't harm them.

Gherkins

Posted: 22/06/2014 at 16:35

Yeah, it's tricky unless you grow quite a few gherkin plants so that you have lots of fruit all coming ready at the same time.

Best feed/product

Posted: 22/06/2014 at 16:32

Fish, blood and bone and comfrey feed.  I haven't found the need for anything else since I started using this combination about 20 years ago.  I grow a large variety of fruit & veg, plus greenhouse crops of many kinds.

cucumbers

Posted: 22/06/2014 at 16:27

Cucumber plants can only support so many fruits which is limited by the size of the root system and how much water that can supply, which will obviously be more limited in a pot than when in the ground.  When the plants feels water-stressed, the first thing they will do is drop new flowers.  As`soon as you harvest some of the cucumbers near the bottom, any new flowers which form will likely start setting again.

nettle feed

Posted: 22/06/2014 at 15:47

Using rhubarb leaves to make an aphid spray does work as the leaves contain a poison called oxalic acid.  It can be used as a general insecticide but do be very careful as it is equally poisonous to us and other animals so keep well out of the way of children and pets.  Lots of info on various ways to control aphids, including recipes, here:

http://www.pan-uk.org/archive/Projects/Local/alt~dir/aphids.htm

 

Discussions started by BobTheGardener

Christmas has come early

New trees 
Replies: 9    Views: 683
Last Post: 19/12/2014 at 16:52

Anyone for squirrel crumble?

Thieving rodents 
Replies: 12    Views: 555
Last Post: 27/11/2014 at 21:12

Plant ID quizzes

Have fun identifying plants! 
Replies: 16    Views: 499
Last Post: 14/09/2014 at 13:17

Watering dried-out pots

Tip to help to stop water running straight through 
Replies: 13    Views: 435
Last Post: 28/07/2014 at 12:28

Blackfly - ladybirds to the rescue!

Broad bean tip blackfly infestation 
Replies: 2    Views: 301
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: 289
Last Post: 05/07/2014 at 18:52

Lovely surprise

I went down the garden in the gloom.. 
Replies: 15    Views: 598
Last Post: 18/06/2014 at 14:32

Dragonfly/Darter/Mayfly ID?

Flew into the polytunnel for a while 
Replies: 6    Views: 490
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: 935
Last Post: 01/06/2014 at 17:42

Deep Down & Dirty: The Science of soil

Replies: 4    Views: 559
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: 606
Last Post: 22/04/2014 at 10:58

Seed grown Wisteria finally in flower - Hooray!

Planted many years ago 
Replies: 3    Views: 331
Last Post: 15/04/2014 at 12:39

Oops!

Polytunnel growing 
Replies: 16    Views: 633
Last Post: 16/04/2014 at 19:05

First day of (meteorological) Spring

How id your garden looking 
Replies: 13    Views: 680
Last Post: 03/03/2014 at 20:31

DIY heated propagator

Making one from scratch 
Replies: 48    Views: 6971
Last Post: 30/06/2014 at 19:57
1 to 15 of 26 threads