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Bookertoo


Latest posts by Bookertoo

A few random questions :)

Posted: 12/07/2012 at 11:52

Nothing really is normal this year Loz, my beans are tall but spindly with nary a sign of a flower, peas only 8 inches tall, flowering but they should be 36 -40 inches high as they are bush types.  Often hard to dig tatties, there are special potato forks which are supposed to help.  I tend to pull the top off then spuddle around with my hands until I find something.  Having said that we are not growing any this year for a variety of reasons.  Broad beans eaten by slugs - no year is ever as the books and packaging  tell you, but this wet dark weather is really holding everything back.  Keep using the organisc irion bawed slug pellets, and for the rest, just hope, not much more any of us can do I am afraid.

Raspberies have suface roots and may just have drowned, I've got plenty of foliage but few if any berries - will be an expensive year food wise I think, come autumn.  Farmers are teling their crops are suffering dreadfully, fields of rotten peas shown and so forth. 

Of course, as ever, next year will be wonderful, it always is .................

July in the garden!!

Posted: 12/07/2012 at 11:47

I grow that gorgeous red lychnis with purple / blue echinops, looks wonderful together, though not for very long as the lychnis is over before the echinops gets into full stride, but for a while it would have made Christopher Lloyd's heart sing. 

Gary, our strawberries have looked like that for what seems months also - I suppose they will redden if we get any sun that lasts for more than half an hour.  The redcurrants are very red but I'll bet not sweet as there has been no sun to turn the starches to sugars - they'll still cook up well for jams and syrups I expect. 

What's the weather like in your area?

Posted: 12/07/2012 at 11:36

Wow, one day without rain and I've had to water the hanging baskets, thanks be to goodness.  I'd almost forgotten how!

Pruning Cotoneaster Horizontalis

Posted: 11/07/2012 at 21:23

O course it is not impossible that you do have a hive of bees near at hand, but it is most likely that the bees are just delighted to find your cotoneaster - they really do love the flowers, also pyracantha seems to be a favourite of them here too.

When you cone to prune it, don't be too delicate or yu will get lots of thinwhispy shoots looking rather untidy, cut a deent sized bit off if it is where you don't want it, and don't worry, it will make new branches afterwards.  There is a very good small RHS book on pruning, virtually foolproof - I know, 'cos I'm fairly foolish, and I can follow it - not that I always do but that is something else again.

wildflowers

Posted: 11/07/2012 at 16:53

huge foxgloves everywhere indeed, last year my son and I were grumbling about he pathetic little 18 inch high efforts, not this year!! They have loved the wet conditions, but as they are native here that is probably hardly surprising.  The hostas are loving the wet too, as is the golden hop - always a high speed runner but this year headed for a gold medal.  Hardy geraniums very happy, and some clematis but by no means all. 

Does anyone know what this plant is?

Posted: 11/07/2012 at 16:49

.... but in the right place under control it is absolutely gorgeous! Most of the other campanulas are not quite as invasive, but there is a tall white one, the name of which escapes me at present, and that really has become a pain in the front garden - sets itself everywhere, I'm actually encouraging the little blue one as that is low enough to be manageable, but the white one is really a pest in bellflower clothing.

The One Show - Britain's Largest Potted Plant

Posted: 11/07/2012 at 16:45

Hmm, there ae so many discriminatory remarks there that I really don't quite know where to start!!  I am in the age group that has white hair, am very computer literate, do know what an aspidistra look like,  and am a very keen gardener - but am not a TV watcher so would not have seen the questioner not heard the question.

Anyway, to get back to the largest pot plant, that really is a how long is a piece of string question, there are huge hostas, swiss cheese plants etc, which may be competitors - do you want an indoor or an outdoor plant? I have a 12 foot oak tree in a pot, and I am sure there are many others out there with huge pot plants.  Glad you are excluding commercial / professional growers such as Kew and other such places, as some of the plants in pots there are just incredibly enormous - including an enormous rubber tree in one stately home conservatory - no idea which, they run into each other after a few dozen visits. 

I am very curious as to why you would imagine a person of advanced years would not frequesnt the boards - or was that supposed to be a jokette? 

Penstemons

Posted: 11/07/2012 at 16:34

You can keep them under a hedge if you have one, ina garage if there is a window, or anywhere cool where they will not freeze.  failing all of that, a cheap plastic grow house will work, but make sure it is pinned down well as they blow away very easily - leaving your baby penstemons uncovered.  In fact, they are tough little plants, and if you have sheltered part of the garden, and we get some decent weather later in the year (sigh of hope!), they may well establish well enough in the ground to get through the windter, depending how much of one we get of course..  A cloche or  large plastic bottle with the lid removed and the bottom cut off to act as a cloche will protect them - especially come spring when the slugs are hungry - come to that at any time, they are always hungry!!

help have i killed my clematis

Posted: 11/07/2012 at 16:29

Regarding your rose - very near the time of the move, dig it up with as much earth around the rootball as you can get, wrap it in wet sacking, pop into a bucket or something so there is not wet earth everywhere, and replant as soon as possible when you get where you are going.  You will need to reduce the stems by at least one third, as it will need all its energy to make new roots where it is going.  Septemeber - October is the best time to do this so the timing is right - good luck with it. 

help have i killed my clematis

Posted: 11/07/2012 at 16:26

I think it is likely that your montana is droopy because it has been rained on so much.  I've had several for around 15 years and have never fed them, except incidentally when other plants near at hand get a dose of feed.  It may also have just got very heavy, its own weight plus that of all the rain - prune away, you can't kill it.  My neighbour chopped mine down, it was 18 foot long along our fence, and ended up an 18 inch stump - yes, we are still speaking, there was a misunderstanding about the nature of the plant - anyway, the point is that it has recovered and is heading off too be its origianl size again in a year or two. 

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