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Latest posts by BobTheGardener

Odd corrections?

Posted: 18/02/2015 at 19:41

It depends on OS version, browser make and version and even whether you happen to have a word processor installed in some cases.  Because of that I'll only give a fix for Windows 8: Settings, PC settings, PC and Devices, Typing.  Turn off 'Autocorrect mispelt words'


Jeruselem artichokes

Posted: 18/02/2015 at 19:16

Italiophile is right, I used to grow 'fartichokes' and tried really hard to ensure that I removed all of the tubers, but was still getting volunteers about 8 years after I 'stopped' growing them!  By pulling the new shoots up whenever I saw one, they did eventually give up though.  Personally I like them roasted but that didn't help at all with their 'sheet-lifting' properties!

Bekkie - you will likely get between 10 and 25 tubers from each one planted if your ground is fertile.

Odd corrections?

Posted: 18/02/2015 at 18:35

It's a setting on your computer but it's difficult to tell you where to turn it off without any clues as to what device you are using with which browser.


Posted: 17/02/2015 at 23:41

The main reason for growing anything in rows is to make weeding easier - you need enough space between rows to regularly run a hoe between them without risk of slicing the carrot tops off.  When growing in containers you can plant much closer as weeds aren't anywhere near such a problem.  I have grown carrots in containers just by scattering the seeds thinly over the entire surface and then thinning until they are about 3-4 cm apart.  As long as you water them well, they still grow quite large.  All home grown carrots taste much sweeter than those from the supermarket in my experience.


Posted: 17/02/2015 at 22:56

Parsnips really need to be grown from seed and sown in-situ.  Plug plants will always produce twisted roots as the parsnip grows from a single main root which goes straight down very early in the plants life.  It cannot do that when started in a module.  I grew 16 in a 50x50cm, 70cm tall container last year filled with 50/50 sharp sand and multi-purpose compost mixture.  Three or four seeds per planting position, thinned to one if several germinated (which takes a few weeks - don't give up if nothing seems to be happening.)  I also very successfully grow carrots in the same way, but sow them in closely spaced rows (10cm apart) and thin the seedlings to about 3cm apart along the row.  It's surprising just how many carrots you can grow in a container! 

Purple sprouting broccoli

Posted: 16/02/2015 at 22:40

Hi Jason, most brassicas like to be really well firmed in when planted, otherwise they tend to bolt and go to seed.  For that reason, they are better in the ground.  If you don't have much space, I would seriously consider growing something else rather than purple sprouting broc.  It does take up a lot of space for the amount of crop you get back.  Over the last few years I've been growing root crops like carrots and parsnips in containers and bags.  You can get a surprisingly large number in a relatively small space and this leaves room in my veg beds for the brassicas.

water pump size

Posted: 16/02/2015 at 22:22

Pumps are rated by flow and 'head', which is the height that they are capable of pumping water to from the reservoir.  You should choose one with a 'head' rating of at least 1.5 times the vertical distance from where the pump is (usually at the bottom of the reservoir) and the outlet (eg the hole where the fountain spurts from.)  The flow (usually in gallons per hour) you need depends on the size of the hole the fountain spurts from, roughly 1 inch=100 GPH, half inch = 50GPH etc.  The most important number is the 'head' (aka rise) though - too small and you'll get nothing, too large and you'll be shooting water up into the sky!  This page may help:


Anyone done any gardening today?

Posted: 16/02/2015 at 19:36

I do the same as you Perki but every 3 or 4 years replace the lot.  Part of the reason for doing this is that Ash tree roots growing under the GH keep growing upwards into the beds and sucking out nutrients (and a lot of water!) and I can't cut them back properly without clearing the borders out completely.  Even though I line the bottoms and sides with 2 or 3 layers of old compost bags, the Ash tree roots still come through!

strawberry bare roots

Posted: 16/02/2015 at 19:21

If they are anything like the wild strawberries growing here DorsetUK, they will be happy.  I have to treat them as weeds or they just take over areas.  As you say, they seem to grow in anything!

Discussions started by BobTheGardener


No real rain here for weeks 
Replies: 11    Views: 261
Last Post: 07/06/2015 at 18:41

Little Red Devils (Lily beetles)

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

Christmas has come early

New trees 
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Last Post: 19/12/2014 at 16:52

Anyone for squirrel crumble?

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

Plant ID quizzes

Have fun identifying plants! 
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Last Post: 14/09/2014 at 13:17

Watering dried-out pots

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

Blackfly - ladybirds to the rescue!

Broad bean tip blackfly infestation 
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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: 406
Last Post: 05/07/2014 at 18:52

Lovely surprise

I went down the garden in the gloom.. 
Replies: 15    Views: 725
Last Post: 18/06/2014 at 14:32

Dragonfly/Darter/Mayfly ID?

Flew into the polytunnel for a while 
Replies: 6    Views: 640
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: 1112
Last Post: 01/06/2014 at 17:42

Deep Down & Dirty: The Science of soil

Replies: 4    Views: 737
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: 1162
Last Post: 22/04/2014 at 10:58

Seed grown Wisteria finally in flower - Hooray!

Planted many years ago 
Replies: 3    Views: 441
Last Post: 15/04/2014 at 12:39


Polytunnel growing 
Replies: 16    Views: 775
Last Post: 16/04/2014 at 19:05
1 to 15 of 28 threads