Latest posts by Bookertoo

New Composter.

Posted: 21/06/2013 at 15:59

Molly, it is true that not many worms come equiped with crampons and ropes, so the bin does need to be on the ground, and as someone else said that helps it to drain if it gets very wet.  My imagination ran away with me, imagining the worms on a climbing expedition up the bricks......  mind, the slugs seem to manage well enough up the walls and the water butts into the hostas!!

Plumb tree disaster.

Posted: 21/06/2013 at 15:57

Don't worry about last year Briggsy, no-on had good crops last summer - too wet, too dark and too windy - my crab apple, which is usually laden with frui,t managed to produce 10!  The eaters had some, but not many and at that we did better than some as the trees are espaliered next to a wall so got some shelter.  Only the redcurrants/blackcurrants did well, but they always do.

Damsons make the best jam ever, hope you get a good crop of those.  Are your plums eaters or cookers, or don't you know yet?  No room for anything as big as a plum tree here, and as yet there are no reliable fruiters on dwarfing root stocks, which I have for my eating apples and cherry - maybe in time huh?

Care of tiny strawberry seedlings?

Posted: 21/06/2013 at 15:52

Really that's a judgement - use the tip of your finger to see if they are moist - such tiny roots won't enjoy feeling water logged, they need air as well.  If they are in your kitchen, then ensure they are on the brightest windowsill - but watch out for scorching if we get any sun - I know, it sounds complicated but it isn't really, just needs thinking about when the weather changes as ours does so much.  Let the top of the compost become dry at least, then indeed spray rather than soak while they are babies.  Coddle them, like any other baby - human, animal or plant.  Thank you for putting the coin in to show their real size, that is thoughtful, as it is often hard to judge in a photograph.  Do you have anything like vermiculite or perlite?  The compost could be topped up with that, it will keep the stem of the plant dry, as damping off - rot of the tiny stem - can be a difficulty with little seedlings. 

Epson salt on Runner beans

Posted: 21/06/2013 at 14:55

Interesting Verdun, always good to hear other folks ideas and options, - either way, the beans need some help whichever you chose Stephen

Plumb tree disaster.

Posted: 21/06/2013 at 14:54

Hmm, yes you are right, no splinting that I think.  You will just have to remove the falling split part as smoothly as you can, and hope that nature will do the rest.  In spite of not wanting to lose this years fruit, I'd be inclined to reduce its load as it has alot of healing to do, and may find that too much with fruit production - you'll be best judge of that.  Maybe clear the grass from around the roots a bit and give it some good feed to build it up as it heals - it doesn't need any competition at root level just now.  It is not absolutely certain tht you can save this, but it is always worth a try - why did it split int he first palce I wonder.  It looks as if a branch has come of that  area before?  

You've got some lovely trees in your garden, lucky you - ae they all productive fruit trees or a mixture?

Garden visit

Posted: 21/06/2013 at 12:36

Remember going there a few years ago and being amazed - wonderful what can be sone with money and people!  Wonderful garderners who know their stuff and get the chance to do it, for the joy of us all.  Must go again ..............

Epson salt on Runner beans

Posted: 21/06/2013 at 12:34

I'd suggest a plant feed, possibly with iron in it.  Any seaweed based fertiliser will help, these are designed for plants rahter than Epsom salts which are designed for people.  Have the beans had alot of rain?  The nutrients can get washed out of the soil if it has rained alot, and runners are hungry plants anyway.  Feed them up, and the will probably do fine after that. 

Plumb tree disaster.

Posted: 21/06/2013 at 12:32

These days it is not suggested that you paint wood wounds with stuff as we used to do - nature will heal the area.  You will need to cut it nice and flat with no splintery bits left.  Such a shame, but plums are inclined to do this I gather.  If the tree is then very much heavier on one side than the other, you have a couple of choices, you can reduce the wood on the other side and lose the crop on that branch as well, or support it if you can until cropping is over.   You will need to prune to get some balance on the tree or it will split again.  Don't prune plums in winter, but as soon as fruiting is over, unless you need to take bits off now to balance it.  

I am just wondering how big the tree is?  Would it be possible to 'splint' the two sides together?  Using very strong tree ties it can be done, I have seen this with split trees but not fruit trees, and not very big ones - may be worth trying?  Probaby someone else here knows more than I do about your problem.  Good luck with it, such a shame to lose it. 

How to tame the wilderness!

Posted: 21/06/2013 at 12:26

That's why it is so important to do a bit at a time, or you will feel overwhelmed byt the whole idea! Poor you, I have gained such a garden in my time, and I'm afraid it did take ages, but in the end it was worth it.  It might be worth just doing something like mowing if you have a lawn, that helps it to look better at once.  Maybe chop weeds to ground level where they are big, like docks and nettles at least ehy won't set seed again this year, and you might be able to see something nice next to them?   Other than that, hard work, lots of cups of tea - and do tell, or show if you can photograph it, how you are doing.  Lots of good people here to encourage you. 

is this a Chinese Lantern plant??????

Posted: 21/06/2013 at 11:44

Looks just like my echinops now, very lush with the wet - stunning plant - certainly not a chinese lantern. 

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