Latest posts by Bookertoo

Drooping Camassia

Posted: 08/05/2013 at 16:13

Hmm, interersting that you are having trouble with the blue one, with more desscription of the problems I wonder one of two things.  Is there any way it could have been damaged at some point in the last little while, maybe by a pigeon, someone walking past or something, allowing the damage to be obvious later.  Also I wonder if you had a late frost which might have damaged the forming bloom. 

to bark or not

Posted: 08/05/2013 at 10:13

Bark can be a good ground cover, and a good mulch.  We use it in our fruit cage, though not on the beds because I am not particularly keen on its appearance.  I do mulch the beds with compost each year.  Your bark chippings will be best just laid on top of the ground, nature will do the rest.  Get the first plantings in and then lay it if you choose to do so. 

The plants will certainy grow through it, even the smallest of bulbs - in fact I have a snowdrop and a crocus that appear to have grown through concrete!!  I do not dig my garden, ever, having done it once and for all 15 - 17 years ago, I rely on close planting and as vigorous a weeding as I can give, if I feel like it.  The only time we dig anything is to plant a new tree, fruit or whatever. There are books about the 'no dig' garden you might like to borrow from the library and see what you think about.  Our soil is quite good, and getting better  with the compost we put on top each year, the worms and beetles etc. pull it down and enrich the soil that way.  If you do go ahead, all you need to do is scrape way an area to plant you new plants and they will be quite happy, pull the bark back over the area, with it not touching the stems to begin with.  Some bark can change the Ph of your soil, something to keep in mind depending upon what you want to grow in it. 

I think that, if you do go ahead, that finer bark looks better than the coarser chop, though that is a matter of personal taste.  There is nothing to be afraid of, and it does reduce the depth to which weeds can grow their roots, making it easier to get them out - but it will not stop them trying!


Posted: 08/05/2013 at 10:02

Whether you buy a greenhouse to fit, or make a frame yourself, you will never regret it - having that bit of cover for tender things - including yourself if the weather goes sour - is one of the great joys of gardening if you can manage it.  There are companies who, if you send your measurements of the the space, will supply the poles for the frame and netting for it - we did this for our rather long and narrow area, it worked vdry well.  Worth looking at the suppliers to see - much, much cheaper than the expense of an actual bespoke one as MMP says. 

Talkback: Cuckoo flower

Posted: 08/05/2013 at 09:59

It wasn't particularly subtle, but last night when I was scarifying the grass before the expected rain came, a robin and a pair of blackbirds took grave exception to my being in 'their' garden at all.  The noise level was incredible, and absolutely wonderful.   I finished the task and went inside, leaving the garden to them, with a big smile on my face and a feeling all was right with the world,  not something we get too often. Today while it rains and greens up the grass, they are down finding all the things I scraped up, picking up bits of loose moss and grass - while I admire a large pot of cream tulips - balm for the sould gardening is - sometimes. 

Drooping Camassia

Posted: 08/05/2013 at 09:55

I haave grown bllue camassia for years, with wonderful success, now their buds are high and will soon open, but the white ones have never done anything.  I do wonder if they are just a breeders 'sport' rahter than a colour the plant developed itself?  Sometimes in their enthusiasm to give us something new, the resulting offerings aren't up to natures plans.  I too have given up with th white ones, added to which, here at least, they did not come up and try to flower at the same time as the blue, which had been my, now bandoned, plan.  Should have guessed nature would win, she usually does!

creating a full bodied hedge

Posted: 08/05/2013 at 09:52

... to say nothing of the perfume of the white narcissi, the red peeled back buds of the acers against their acid green and deep purple young leaves, the bright pink oxalis, blue scillas, and loads of birds on the feeders - why woudn't everyone garden I wonder? 

Do you think...

Posted: 07/05/2013 at 16:43

Yes, I too would be more concerned about the larvae than the smallness of the saplings - can you as Klink suggests, take a picture of those?  If you have disposed of them, then look up vine weavil larvae on a search engine and see if that is what they looked like??  If so, your supplier can take your plants away and give you new ones with no additions!!  They may be something quite harmless, but you need to make sure. 

creating a full bodied hedge

Posted: 07/05/2013 at 15:19

ah Catnip, we're all liable to feel like that from time to time, about 10 times a day in my case, when I look out at the garden and see all the things I want to do and the few hours there are to do them in!!  It is such a lovely surprise when people like the garden, even when sometimes all the gardener sees are what they percieve is not right - we should take the advice of one famous gardener on TV, who said 'don't forget just to stop and give the garden a good looking at and dose of enjoyment' - no-one else will worry about the laurels bare legs, and given time you will improve it. 

clematis suggestion please

Posted: 07/05/2013 at 11:52

So is the pale pink Hagley hybrid, most of the paler ones appreciate some shade, also the alpina types do well in the kind of place you describe. 

bark chip

Posted: 07/05/2013 at 11:49

Cheaper to get it delivered from an on line store, depending very much on how much you need - and the bags it comes in make wonderful raised beds afterwards.

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