Latest posts by chrissieB

Hanging basket shade

Posted: 20/07/2017 at 08:18

Begonias as said will do well.  I always found violas did quite well in shade (ours was north west facing wall so no sun at all). Petunias also did ok - didnt grow as madly as in the sun but still gave good colour for the season 

Heucheras and carex work well and give lots of foliage colour and can be reused each year. Parsley makes a good foliage plant in shade.

if you get some direct sun you may find quite a few things work - they may not flower quite as much but still give a good display - in fact they may do just as well as they also won't  get too hot or dry. So do try any sun loving favourites.

Allotment plot

Posted: 19/07/2017 at 15:19

If you are offered a choice, also look at what the neighbouring plots are like. If they are very weedy and poorly kept then you will be battling weed seeds from their plots.

Even a well cared plot will look completely overgrown if it's  been untended for just a few months - so worth asking how long a plot has been been untennanted.

Also think about what the aspect is - sunny etc, any shelter from wind etc...if on a slope is that going to make it less sunny/more sheltered but also walk up and down it a couple of time as if it's an effort then it's going to be more so when you're working on it and moving compost etc from one end to another.

Also look what's on the plot as it's great if you inherit a shed, compost bins, poly tunnels, fruit bushes etc but do check if it's being left for the new  tennant - we were thrilled at the shed we thought we would have only to find out that it had been promised to someone else and was gone by the time we'd got the site keys.

Finally, as already said - being near the water taps (if they have them) is very useful.

I don't know if you are on the list for more than one site or if it's a site you're familiar with - so might be worth asking if they have toilets, storage lockers, communal shop and onsite tool hire (e.g. Strimmers, rotavators etc), are sheds allowed etc..It might be worth waiting longer to get on a site with more facilities.

Last edited: 19 July 2017 15:23:31

What do you hate most about gardening?

Posted: 17/07/2017 at 09:18

Will try that one, Joyce - thanks

What do you hate most about gardening?

Posted: 17/07/2017 at 08:48

My nemesis is string - it always gets into a tangle no matter how careful I think I've have being. Plus I can't bear to throw any potentially useful piece away so have lots of loose bits but of course you can never find a piece the length you need.

I do have one of those bobbins for storing string (is that the right word) with a lovely pair of scissors which hangs on a hook but it's made of metal and extremely heavy, which means I have a tidy store of string in the shed where I don't really need it and numerous tangles of string in every pocket and elsewhere, which I've cut and taken into the garden to use....

Garden shape

Posted: 16/07/2017 at 09:13

We had a shallow, wide garden and your right it's much easier finding suggestions for long and narrow. I suppose we effectively took those ideas and turned them on their side : )

I didn't like been able to see all the garden at once so we divided it into separate areas using planting so that it encouraged you to walk into the garden and you couldnt see across the whole width from every window. The patio ran across the back of the house and then we extended and shaped the borders so that they seperated the patio from the lawn except for an entrance at each end opposite our French doors and split the lawn into two separate areas using planting and an arch. We positioned the arch so that the two main windows looked onto different garden areas - this meant the areas were different sizes but I felt  this gave it more interest. We used similar planting in the border between the two areas but the main planting within each area was different.

You can create more depth in a garden by using shapea on the diagonal and placing a focal point in the far corners - this draws the eye along a longer line and tricks the brain into thinking the space isn't deeper than it really is. We put a second small seating area in one corner. 

if you want a naturalistic style you could use trees to create the divide and screen areas from the house Instead or an arch or trellis.

John Brookes design books are very good - maybe you could get one from your local library or cheap on Amazon. He has two I have used a lot "Garden Design" and one on designs for small gardens - very easy to read and understand, but expert tips and advice.

Last edited: 16 July 2017 09:15:05

Rose killed by gardener!

Posted: 16/07/2017 at 08:55

Keep them well watered and they may well be ok. Although it is the wrong time of year for pruning that shouldn't matter if they were reasonably healthy to start with. But it may take a while before anything regrows.

We completely cut down a rose we moved recently to try and reduce the stress and shock from being moved. It was reduced to just a few cut stems and no leaves at all. It's taken ages and I thought we had lost it but it has sent out some lovely strong new growth just in the last few days - must be 6 weeks or more since it was moved so I think it's just a matter of being patient.

PS - Am not suggesting you move yours - there's no need to, that will just give them another shock - but ours has recovered from a similarly severe pruning.

Mysterious plant

Posted: 15/07/2017 at 07:54

If using as a green manure you don't let it flower but dig it in long before.

The flowers are lovely and the bees absolutely love it, flowers all summer and very pretty. It does re-seed but very easy to recognise and whip out if it's  in the wrong place.

Selling your own plants

Posted: 13/07/2017 at 09:30

Try this site - some plants are offered free or as swaps but some are for sale

GW Magazine

Posted: 12/07/2017 at 08:39

I don't think the free gifts are worth more than the discount you get for paying up front through a subscription. Often you have to pay more than the usual price for any larger gifts so they are not strictly free and the seeds are usually the same each year - they seem to always give away lettuce and tomato seeds - and these are only of value to you if they are the plant and variety you want or can use.

You don't need to be a subscriber to use the discount codes, you just need to find out what they are. My sister and I each subscribe to a different gardening mag which we then swap - so we get to use all or any code and we both use the same sign-on for the secret club. I also have a group of freinds who always check with each other before ordering plants to see if anyone has a code through their mag/club etc...

Its worth looking at all the garden mag websites as many all list lots of their discount codes on their site so you can pick and choose which gives you the best offer/discount Or use that to decide if a subscription is worth having.

i must admit I also always let my magazine subscription lapse and then wait for an offer I like to sign up again - they come round very regularly so only ever miss a month maybe - so for example often sign up with the first 3 issues for £5. 

Tatton Garden show

Posted: 12/07/2017 at 08:19

I went for the first time last year and was really disappointed. There were no real nursery sellers - all the plant stalls were selling the same things and nothing that you couldn't buy at any local garden centre. It wasn't very busy which was nice re seeing things but there was no buzz or atmosphere. There seemed to be more food stalls than anything else. Some of the show Gardens were quite good but there were'nt very many - I think we stayed about 90 minutes, less time than it took us to get there.

i wasn't feeling brilliant that day as had been ill just before so that might have affected my enthusiasm but don't think it coloured my impression. Maybe I went with too high expectations....

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