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3 days ago at 09:51
We've just done this with our many and overgrown various cacti. We got larger terracotta pots whether shallow or deeper, and larger, if required, to suit each. We also got cactus compost (pots and compost from homebase), mixed it with grit, put a layer of crocks in the bottom and then repotted each cactus in this way, wearing gloves!
Then we pruned according to desired result but didn't go too radical because you can always take more off later. After that we moved the plants to a very bright spot and watered quite well - I would pour in the water until it just appears in the drip tray and stop.
Good light is the key and an unseated room is also needed but I think B3 is bang on - the dead growth needs to be removed. And once you have watered as described, keep the watering to a minimum until mid spring.
Hope that helps, and good luck with it. I have managed to keep houseplants given me by my dad when I left home at 17 still going strong, and I turned 50 in September!
10 Dec 2017 15:39
I completely agree - education is definitely the way and also promoting spending time observing the behaviour of the wildlife. For instance, hover flies are as mesmerising as any of the flying pollinators and absolutely don't hang around beehives trying to kill the inhabitants.
But I guess it's easier to have a knee jerk reaction than listen to common sense! 🙄
10 Dec 2017 12:53
Thank you for this information.
Is this a threat to all gardens ' pollinators or just honey bees? I mean, are gardens in areas with no hives still at risk? Having seen a few of the documentaries on them over the years their aggression is very troubling - we're not that far from Torbay, as the bee flies!
07 Dec 2017 12:06
I meant TiNus, obviously. My roman emperor fixation keeps getting the better of my typing! 😊
07 Dec 2017 11:11
I think there are a lot things to consider when making a wildlife pond and generally, having researched for a long time about size, siting, planting, maintenance, etc I was, to be honest, fairly confused. There are lots of conflicting advice about depth!
I understand Onopordum's assertions, generally and if living in a goldilocks location, then a shallow and broad pond might suit much better, if that's what is desired. Equally, all the photos on this thread illustrate how beautiful all wildlife ponds are.
However, in terms of the environment, when our local weather says it's been a beautiful, dry day with temps around 15, we can be sat under a blanket of snow ❄️ which never gets a mention. Likewise, when the rest of the country does have snow but it goes in a few days, we can still be snowed in after 10 days! The army has been known to close the roads to the village before now 🙄 So, there are situations where a wildlife pond being deeper offers a stable environment for all those inhabitants who need to have consistency. The wind chill alone can take your skin off up here, believe me and there's no shelter apart from the lee of the drystone walls we put in the garden.
Micearguers, I hadn't thought of the stability of the pond in terms of nutrients, etc - very interesting. We had to build up the one end of our pond (seen in above photo) because of a slope down the garden and the camber across. Consequently, we have that area multi-shelved and will place a log and other easily accessed escapes, as it sounds like you are doing. The bog garden at that end is hopefilly going to be a nice compliment to the woodland bed at the other end and the planting all the way around it, too.
We have decided to position a couple of massive granite boulders, taken out of the soil, to act like silent guardians over the garden. We have so many! But the garden is too small for ma of the evergreen shrubs I love (viburnum Titus being one) because they get so big. So, the boulders will quickly be colonised by mosses and lychens and look beautiful standing alone in winter or when the planting engulfs them!
Now, the weather says snow ❄️ is on the way so I'd better get the Factor 50 out!
06 Dec 2017 20:28
Thank you Buttercupdays! I shall look into the Roseraie although I'm keen to keep single flowers in the pollinator bed and the rest of the back garden, generally. But then, there's always the front garden 😉 which is actually more sheltered!
I know what you mean about chomping critters - we've even had cows and ponies wandering around, trampling everything in sight! But since we put in the indeginous mixed hedge and mended the fence (even though it's not ours), we've been able to keep them on the right side. We did keep a couple of fox sized holes for use in ermergencies though and they've been used in times of dire need, too! Always ready to help our wildlife 😊
06 Dec 2017 15:35
So, how deep did you end up making the pond, Redwing? It doesn't look very deep but it might be deceptive?
We can get seriously cold winters with prolonged spells of minus temperatures, so we dug down quite a way at its deepest - almost a metre, I think. But the rest is shelved at different levels and the gentle slope at the other end houses the beach. We were given some flag irises from a friend too, but while most things will be planted in a layer of subsoil, the flags will stay in baskets to hold them from taking over.
The schedule 9 of the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 has a list of invasive non-natives to avoid, if anyone is interested in not having their fledgling pond being taken over in short order. I only found this by accident and I have to dispose of newly planted rosa rugosa and cotoneaster horizontalis as we live within a national park and I can't guarantee their containment. Got to say though, am gutted about the roses - the smell is divine!
On the rhs website there is clear information about the contoneaster's schedule 9 status but nowhere mentions rugosa. I wonder why? 🤔
04 Dec 2017 12:31
Redwing, that looks like a fabulous pond and the setting is gorgeous! You must so hate having that to look at it all!
02 Dec 2017 17:16
Here's photo of the pond.
Out of shot but running up to the slabs, that's a woodland bed and the slabs will be replaced by the beach which will come up and cover to that line.
In the far top right corner is the bog garden (now dug out but yet to be lined) and the path on the left has yet to be gravelled and will match the path on the right of the pond which has (yes, you guessed it) still to be gravelled. The pollinator bed is directly to the left of the path and is well on its way now it's had a full season. The monardas and astrantias have been fantastic along with the geraniums, especially Rozanne.
i'll post more photos when I get out there - tis very cold and the log burner is too tempting...
01 Dec 2017 20:15
Thanks Redwing, I'm glad they sent the certificate in the end although there shouldn't have been the need to chase it up in the first place. Your pond sounds lovely and large and when you say 'recently' do you mean this year? I'm always fascinated by how quickly they look established 😀
01 Dec 2017 19:15
thanks for the thoughtful copy Fairygirl.
We're planning to net the leaves out so they shouldn't be an issue and I am really pleased the buddlea will be able to stay - it's near the beach end which is edged by a woodland bed. At the other end of the pond there is a small ish bog garden and the rest of the pond has about 50-75cm of soil before you reach the gravel paths.
The pond was dug over a year ago and is now full of weeds so ther a lot of work to do before we line it, which will be soon. But the plan is to have a disabled friendly wildlife garden that we can open for the ngs.
We have had help from volunteers and Dorset Perennials online helped with some free plants for our pollinator bed, opposite the pond. What help we get will be acknowledged in signage on the open day (good advertising) and as we are in such an exposed location, if we pull it off, we'll be chuffed 😊
Lots of work yet - will post some photos
01 Dec 2017 18:41
So, I have just followed Bob's advice and apparently I am an ignorant ****! I'm so sorry, Lyn. I was ignoring you and have no idea why or how, especially as we've never met! 😀 But I did spy a stunningly beautiful pond as I scrolled down at breakneck speed, and am very envious!
so, I'll just go back up now and read everything properly from the top - thanks so much...
01 Dec 2017 16:25
Thanks for the info about the buddlea - should look lovely!
I can only see your reply but am assuming there are more because you mention Lyn and heading says there are 4 posts . Not sure why that is? But this means I still don't know about the liner 😁
01 Dec 2017 10:02
Has anyone got any experience of using Bradshaw's poly flex pond liner with free underlay and lifetime guarantee?
It seems really cheap compared to epdm (preferred option) but, as with all things in life, the preferred option is always more than you can afford 🙄
And one more thing, will a buddlea be a problem for the liner? I have one close to where the edge of the liner will be and would hate the roots to pierce the liner.
Thanks in advance for any advice!
Last edited: 01 December 2017 10:04:57
15 Oct 2015 17:06
Fingers crossed for the Ryobi, Singing Gardener...I'm sure it will be fine...
Thanks to all for the help/info.
15 Oct 2015 12:33
Hi Jo, how strange - a friend of mine rang this morning to say that if I couldn't get sorted he'd travel down with his B&D grass strimmer - high performance,which he only bought at the weekend - coincidence! So, if the Ryobi doesn't cut it (sorry) I'll look at getting one myself because my friend rates it as highly as you do!
Once I've figured out how to put photos on here I'll reveal the task ahead. I don't think it's just the scale of the task which has always put people off,but the environment doesn't help as the garden is on highest Dartmoor. People who I ring to ask to come and give me a quote to clear it tend to take a dim view and assume all you can grow are ground hugging plants adapted for wind and water and ask me why I want to bother! But, whilst lavender and the like is a challenge, there is actually a wide variety of plants which thrive up here, given the elements. Some of my neighbours' gardens are lovely.
15 Oct 2015 12:01
Buttercupdays, your place sounds idyllic! My ultimate dream has always been to have a small holding but without having any animals being eaten. As it is, my small patch of granite laden wilderness will have to suffice, although if it does ever get to be the wildlife garden I wish for, then any visitors of the non-human persuasion will be equally welcome & less work!
David, I looked at the hiring scenario but locally, prices are more than purchase price so whilst that would have been a good choice, here, it would be unsuitable.
I've gone for the Ryobi you mentioned Singing Gardener. At least I think it's the same model - £95 Amazon with a brushcutters blade. It should be here tomorrow - good weather still, hopefully, so if I take my time, I should be able to clear quite a bit of jungle in the next few days.
15 Oct 2015 09:29
Thanks Dave, I'll look at it this morning. ????
14 Oct 2015 18:50
Thanks Topbird, no volunteers who will come out to the village, I'm afraid - it's known unaffectionately as 'the village of the damned'! And funds to employ someone (and believe me, I've tried getting quotes but no-one wants to come) don't exist. Hence, the trying to get it done myself. If it's gonna finish me off, you've got to try, right?
Thanks for the info on the Ryobi, Singing Gardener, I'll check it out.
A final thought, I used to curse the dandelion for invading my beautifully created landscapes, even though I'm a relaxed kind of gardener. But, for years now, they are one of the few things I look forward to seeing. They sweep in with a carpet of sunshine which, in their way,is very beautiful and makes me smile. I wouldn't recommend giant hogweed though but the humble dandelion is an often maligned treasure. Controversial, I know!
Thanks for all the help.
14 Oct 2015 17:32
Thanks for your thoughts, both. I always thought petrol jobs were a faff and as I'm disabled, electric would be easier for me and anyone who might help (chance would be a fine thing but you never know).
Guess I'll have to think on it some more. Having been housebound for 8 years, because of an inaccessible garden and no funds, a little longer won't hurt...she lied ????
I can't explain how much my garden means towards a better enriched life. I used to garden every chance I got so to look at a nightmare every day is so miserable.
Any thoughts on makes/models of petrol?