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Latest posts by BobTheGardener

cross pollination of apple trees

Posted: 31/07/2014 at 18:20

Hi Marion, Berghill has explained it very well.  The graft union will look something like this (click the link below to see):

They are usually near the bottom of the trunk, but can sometimes be higher.

Does this look like excess nitrogen?

Posted: 31/07/2014 at 17:37

Looks more like simple drought to me but dry soil and excess nitrogen wouldn't have helped!  It looks like it's new growth from the base which has died - the plant may have done that itself to prevent further water loss.  If the affected growth doesn't recover now you have given it a good drink, cut it (only the dead growth) right back to the ground just in case it is (or becomes) diseased.

Garden Design Computer Programme

Posted: 30/07/2014 at 18:34

I agree, a garden design program would really be based on visualisation technology (2D or 3D) while a planner would be more like a database/calendar.  Two very different skillsets required and unlikely to be created by single programmer so would need to be written by a team.  Market research has probably made it untenable which is why so few are around.  I've often looked for something like this over the past ten years and have been disappointed.  I think you would be better finding two separate applications or doing the planning yourself in a similar way to the method I suggested, but you then need quite well developed Microsoft Office skills.  You can still download google sketchup which could be used for design.

Lilly trees

Posted: 30/07/2014 at 18:15

Hi Stifyn, do you mean lily trees (normally called Magnolia trees) or tree lilies (true lilies which grow to 2m or more tall)?


Who is this please?

Posted: 30/07/2014 at 16:56

Looks flightless, whatever it is.

A new small flowering plant ID, please.

Posted: 30/07/2014 at 15:02

I don't recognise it either but leaves, growth habit and anthers are very fuchsia-like.  Maybe some form with 4 large sepals and tiny (invisible) petals?

Garden Design Computer Programme

Posted: 30/07/2014 at 13:55

Do you also have Outlook, Yvie?  If so, maybe you could use the calendar feature together with bookmarks and hyperlinks?  I had a quick play and you can hyperlink to bookmarks or headings in both word and excel documents.

I believe this site may be planning to add some features which may help, too.

I remember the BBC used to have a garden planner on their website before the  cutbacks forced them to close many of their helpful-to-the-public web stuff.


Posted: 30/07/2014 at 13:13

Or are you asking for something to grow on the trellis, Cookie?

cross pollination of apple trees

Posted: 30/07/2014 at 13:02

Hi marion, what you describe is not possible - cross pollination only affects the seeds and cannot change the variety of an existing tree.  What can happen is that branches can grow from below the graft point (virtually all apple trees have the named variety grafted onto a different rootstock.)  If branches are allowed to grow from below the graft, they will produce apples of the rootstock variety.  As rootstocks are chosen for their vigour and not fruit, these branches will usually take over and become dominant.  Have a look to see if you can find the original graft union and remove any branches which come from below that point.

Mildew can also badly affect a tree enough to change the quality of the fruit.  It is difficult to deal with but generally is due to dryness at the roots and high humidity in the air.  You can do little about the humidity, but giving the trees a regular and deep watering should help with the dryness.  My advice would be to keep a circle of ground, about a metre in diameter around the base of the trunks, clear of grass, weeds and other plants.  After watering them well, mulch this area with a good layer of garden compost mixed with well rotted farmyard manure from a garden centre.  Top the layer up each Spring.  Also make sure you are pruning the trees properly so that their is plenty of light and air getting into the centre and ensure the trees are not being overly shaded by surrounding trees and large shrubs.


Posted: 30/07/2014 at 12:28

Have a very close look at the back of the affected leaves and check for tiny caterpillars.  I have them on mine (last year too) and they eat all of the green matter from below, leaving only the upper surface and veins. The leaves then dry and go crispy.  No-one seems sure of exactly which moth or sawfly is causing this - it may be an invader from the US and affects carrots, too.  I had to spray with an organic bug spray as the rate at which the damage spread was incredible.  There are threads about it on other forums:



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