London (change)
Today 29°C / 20°C
Tomorrow 32°C / 18°C


Latest posts by CurlyCarly

Where's my tidy gene?

Posted: 12/06/2014 at 21:19

Oh dear,

I've spent the last few days going round gardens that are opening to the public.

How do folk manage to keep on top of the weeds and have everything looking so pristine? I've been told to tackle one bit of the garden at a time then work on the next. The trouble is if I turn my back for a day the weeds seem to be making a come back!

Apart from employing a gardener, which is out of the question for me, does anyone have any tips?

Speakers for the club

Posted: 10/06/2014 at 22:00

Well said Mike. Our group are as most a mixed bag. Some very knowledgeable, others complete beginners and most somewhere in the middle. We've had some very entertaining speakers who manage to appeal to all - a hard act to follow every time.

Onward and upward.

Speakers for the club

Posted: 10/06/2014 at 09:35

Thanks everyone. I should be up to speed for the next five years soon

I've been in touch with Carrie Thomas  

It's a long way for her to come for one meeting. We meet on the last Thursday of each month. Carrie suggests there if there is another club in the West Midlands/South Staffs/ Worcestershire area that meets on the last Wed or Friday we might be in business. Is there anyone out there???


Speakers for the club

Posted: 09/06/2014 at 21:54

Thanks Dovefromabove.

I looked at her site and would be very interested. I think Swansea may be too far away (we're in South Staffs) but I will contact her to check.

Thanks again,


Speakers for the club

Posted: 09/06/2014 at 20:48

Thanks Nutcutlet, you've given me some good pointers there.


Ants in the lawn

Posted: 09/06/2014 at 20:43

I sorted out my red ants this week. Digging with my spade at arms length - so that they didn't invade my private spaces - I dug out the nest, put it in one of those big bucket things and chucked them all in the canal (I'm lucky to have one at the bottom of my garden)... and so the circle of life continues. There were lots of fish ripples around for some time. If you don't have a canal handy a bucket of water might do the trick!

solar powered water feature

Posted: 01/05/2014 at 23:59

I used to design and make decorative fountains and have a bubble fountain operating on a solar panel that has been in the garden for nearly nine years without problems. I used to hear all sorts of complaints about SP pumps breaking down but these always turned out to be cheap Far Eastern imports.

Solar pumps are great if you choose the right one. The variation in flow as a result of changing light levels is fascinating but can cause problems if they are used in the wrong water feature eg a spouting mask may become a dribbling one when the sun goes behind a cloud. The water may well then just drp down the wall and empty the catch bowl. The opposite can also happen and strong light can cause a spouting fountain  to spout too fiercely and ditto - an empty container.

If you do go for solar choose carefully, get expert advice and be prepared to buy the best. My old one is an Oase one and it has been brilliant.

Ants in the lawn

Posted: 01/05/2014 at 23:44

Thanks everyone for such a variety of responses to this problem.

I don't think anyone has mentioned the pain that can be inflicted by red ants. I was happily weeding a flower border last week when I felt a sharp pain, like a thorn under my tshirt. It was a red ant. Unknown to me I had another lurking that went on to sting elsewhere. These lumps lasted almost a week and were intensely itchy. Maybe I'm over sensitive but they were no joke. I'd hate our young grandchildren to be attacked.

I have put out bait stations but can't see where the nest is - under a big plant I guess. Does anyone know if nematodes work if you can't water them directly onto the nest?

Speakers for the club

Posted: 17/01/2014 at 22:53

Hi Everyone,

I live in the West Midlands and have recently taken on the role of finding speakers for our local gardening club. We are around the South Staffs, West Midlands, N Worcestershire borders. Can anyone out there recommend speakers from this area? (No personal details, just the name and subject should do it).



Talkback: Mouse in the compost bin

Posted: 10/01/2014 at 17:29

Please everyone learn from my experience!

I've read all the above with great interest. I wish I'd known about the baited plastic bag down the rat hole last year when I observed, through my kitchen window, a youngish rat climbing the bird-feeder pole and getting into the squirrel proof peanut feeder. It was shortly followed by a bigger rat that, after pondering the problem for a few moments - don't underestimate the intelligence of rats - managed to squeeze itself into the nut feeder and also had a binge. I poured rat poison down the rat hole I found and (touch wood) no rats since but sadly no birds as I had to stop putting out the food.

On the subject of mice. In my heart, I loved the cute little brown wood mice (Yellow Necked just like the one in the Gruffalo) that came into our house the winter of 2012. We had them in the cupboard under the bath. Humane mouse traps came out and we caught about ten, one each night. Eventually we thought the same mice were returning, so reluctantly bought some death traps. By the time we counted 30 dead ones we decided on poison which seemed to do the trick - no dead bodies around and nothing taking the baited traps. Over the summer we had our house wiring checked. It cost us three and a half grand for a full rewire due to mouse damage. We've learned our lesson and signed up for a contract with the local council pest control officer.  So reader......beware!

Discussions started by CurlyCarly

Ground Ivy in the Asparagus bed

Replies: 9    Views: 349
Last Post: 15/02/2015 at 19:49

Tree suggestions

Advice and ideas 
Replies: 3    Views: 205
Last Post: 12/02/2015 at 19:48

Tree Peony Transplant

Replies: 2    Views: 200
Last Post: 20/11/2014 at 13:38

Plant ID please

Replies: 9    Views: 468
Last Post: 09/07/2014 at 19:42

honeysuckle won't flower

Replies: 11    Views: 760
Last Post: 04/08/2014 at 07:14

Where's my tidy gene?

Replies: 23    Views: 868
Last Post: 16/06/2014 at 12:14

Speakers for the club

Any ideas 
Replies: 10    Views: 887
Last Post: 10/06/2014 at 22:00

Tackling erosion

holding back a steep bank 
Replies: 11    Views: 1122
Last Post: 27/01/2013 at 21:01
8 threads returned