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Chris 11

Latest posts by Chris 11

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poisonous courgettes

Posted: 04/12/2014 at 19:22

The bitter taste of some fruit is caused by an over-production of plant defence chemicals called ‘cucurbitacins’. This is mainly a problem in courgettes and summer squash and is caused primarily by a mutation within the plant. The problem is more likely when plants are grown from saved seeds, where inadvertent cross-pollination may have occurred.

Affected fruit should not be eaten as it causes stomach upsets and affected plants should be removed.

'Mazina's chilli'

Posted: 06/11/2014 at 19:08

Thanks Edd, I agree something like that is the most likely explanation.

Catnip (Nepeta cataria)

Posted: 05/10/2014 at 10:19

From what I've read, not all cats react to it, but maybe around 2/3rds plus. Of those, some prefer it fresh and green and straight off the plant, others prefer it dried like it would be in cat toys.

It's a wonderful plant, both for cats and pollinating insects.

Catnip (Nepeta cataria)

Posted: 04/10/2014 at 16:09

You could keep it potbound and on the windowsill for now. I've grown it for a few years, and it sometimes survives the winter outdoors, but not always. It also sometimes self seeds and grows again in the same patch, but again, not always, probably because cats love it too much and nibble it and roll all over it before it gets established and grows again.

I grow it in pots in the greenhouse, and plant out when its established, into an area of the garden where I'm happy for the cats to enjoy it. It over winters ok in the greenhouse and is ready for the garden in spring, as well as a fresh source of leaves for the cat in winter when there would be none still growing outdoors.

My seeds were originally Mr F's rather than T&M, but they look like the same variety, Nepeta Cataria.

Recommendations for a 9ft high living, thin, hedge near a house

Posted: 30/09/2014 at 20:16

If it will be in full sun, does that mean that anything you grow 9ft tall will be causing that much more extra shade to your neighbours than an existing or replacement fence?

A lot of bad feeling can be caused by depriving neighbours of sunlight just because you want a bit more privacy.

There's a good reason planning permission is needed for anything more than 6ft.

Plant catnip plant outside in Spring or Autumn?

Posted: 20/09/2014 at 21:52

Try and let at least one plant flower, and collect the seeds for starting again next year. It doesn't always survive over winter or self-seed in the garden the following year. It does tend to survive and even continue growing slowly over winter if you can put the pots in a green house or similar.

My plants also have those white spots on the leaves, anyone know what they are?



Posted: 09/09/2014 at 18:01

Grew my late-autumn planted garlic in patio tubs last year and it was very successful.

As long as the modules are deep enough to get some decent root development, I think it's a viable option.

Talkback: Elephant hawk moth

Posted: 02/09/2014 at 11:07

 Saw a lovely elephant hawkmoth sitting on one of my chilli plants back in mid-June.


Posted: 21/08/2014 at 11:04

Agree with Fairygirl. August so far has been colder and less sunny than would be ideal, just when the tomatoes (and chillies, courgettes etc) would have really benefited from it.

Probably explains lower yields, smaller tomatoes, slower and delayed ripening.

Good year for sweetcorn?

Posted: 21/08/2014 at 10:56

Minipops just starting to show tassles, so will probably be ready soon, first time I've grown them.

Swifts are not ready and would have benefited from a sunnier August than we have had so far. Heavy rain and wind didn't help as the ground was already saturated during windy conditions which led to them toppling instead of staying strong and upright like previous years.

1 to 10 of 23

Discussions started by Chris 11

'Mazina's chilli'

Anyone heard of it? 
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Last Post: 06/11/2014 at 19:08
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