London (change)
Today 15°C / 11°C
Tomorrow 15°C / 13°C

Dave Morgan

Latest posts by Dave Morgan

advice re veg patch please

Posted: 06/09/2014 at 19:11

Amanda, don't worry, I've been in a similar position. I took over an allotment in late spring, it's previous holders obviously hadn't fed it over the years and despite adding bonemeal and FBB, it's still been a poor year for me too. My plan of action is simple, I do have access to several tons of well rotted horse manure, so the allotment is getting a serious depth of manure this autumn, plus other organic fertilzers and sharp sand as the soil is quite heavy.

Poor soils can be quite common, and your soil sounds light, so the addition of as much manure as you can get your hands on this autumn will help significantly.

I'm leaving most of it fallow over winter so that the worms can do their work. A lack of worms shows there is little humus and organic matter in the soil, manure will rectify this very quickly, their rate of reproduction is staggering when conditions are right.

Over the summer I came across several neglected gardens ( new customers) and the addition of a thick layer of manure has boosted the worm count amazingly, and the condition of the soil has been vastly improved.

So take heart, feed the soil this autumn and start again next spring, I'm certain you'll reap the benefits next year. 

Need to encourage more slugs into the garden

Posted: 06/09/2014 at 18:54

OK I'll sell you some!

San Marzano 3 tomatoes

Posted: 06/09/2014 at 14:51

Found this Pod.

Determinate tomatoes, or "bush" tomatoes, are varieties that grow to a compact height (generally 3 - 4'). Determinates stop growing when fruit sets on the top bud. All the tomatoes from the plant ripen at approximately the same time (usually over period of 1- 2 weeks). They require a limited amount of staking for support and are perfectly suited for container planting.


Indeterminate tomatoes will grow and produce fruit until killed by frost. They can reach heights of up to 12 feet although 6 feet is normal. Indeterminates will bloom, set new fruit and ripen fruit all at the same time throughout the season. They require substantial staking for support.

Never prune a 'determinate' type tomato. You want all the fruit you can get from these shorter plants. Indeterminate varieties vary in their response to pruning, some reportedly have increased yields when the young plant is pruned back to three or four vines. I prefer to let the plant produce stems for better fruit production and better leaf canopy to protect the fruit from sunscald. However, I like to remove most of the suckers at the bottom 10" of the plant to invite greater air flow at the base of the plants and reduce the risk that fruit will touch the ground where they insects and disease might be encouraged. Know that removing new flowers near the end of the growing season can help speed up the ripening of mature fruit.


Lawn weed and and feed

Posted: 06/09/2014 at 14:45

Best not weed and feed in the autumn Jason. Really that needs to go on in spring. You need an autumn lawn booster right now. Lawn treatments are best done in spring as it gives you the chance to see what damage winter has done, remove moss and the like after the wet weather, and reseed if necessary.

Grannies Bonnets

Posted: 05/09/2014 at 13:32

If you cut of any shrivelled foliage new growth will come, but you won't get flowers till next year.

Evening primrose

Posted: 05/09/2014 at 13:30

They do self seed but they are easy enough to hoe or pull out.

Grubs in turf

Posted: 05/09/2014 at 13:28

Fairygirl, seeding at anytime in September is ok even up north, unless the weather turns suddenly frost and really low temps don't hit us till end of October or November. As for the damage, it's leather jackets causing that. Water in the right nematodes then treat as described. Foxes will dig at new turf as its easy to move, but as I said before the people who sold you the turf need shooting, it's poor quality turf and shouldn't have contained leather jackets. It's certainly grounds for asking for a refund or new turf without the passengers.

Can't identify plants in garden!

Posted: 05/09/2014 at 13:17

Looks like one of the gaillardia's although which one I'm not at all sure. But looking again could be rudbeckia hirta.

Talkback: How to take cuttings from tender fuchsias

Posted: 05/09/2014 at 13:13

In a cold frame or greenhouse, failing that a cool windowsill indoors.

Grubs in turf

Posted: 05/09/2014 at 11:11

Whoever supplied the turf gave you a dud lot!. Treat with the nematodes first, they will take a while to work, 2 weeks after treatment, you can resow the affected patches.

The lawn won't establish properly till next spring /summer, so be patient. If it's still looking ragged in spring, scarify the affected patches and resow them. Lawns are a lot of work and quality of turf can make a huge difference. Your's doesn't sound to be too great, so I'd whinge like hell at whoever sold it too you.

Discussions started by Dave Morgan

Funny Wildlife

Squirrel V Woodpigeons 
Replies: 2    Views: 115
Last Post: 04/09/2014 at 21:40

Best Thornproof Gloves

Replies: 3    Views: 482
Last Post: 26/05/2014 at 23:10

Clematis for a dry bank

Replies: 6    Views: 372
Last Post: 09/04/2014 at 15:20

Peach for fan traing

Replies: 3    Views: 241
Last Post: 13/02/2014 at 21:19

Colder weather is coming!

Replies: 17    Views: 2073
Last Post: 21/01/2014 at 17:54

Invasive roots from a neighbours garden

Can I remove invasive roots from my garden, 
Replies: 8    Views: 551
Last Post: 12/10/2013 at 00:56


Hold in invasive roots 
Replies: 5    Views: 867
Last Post: 08/03/2014 at 20:33
7 threads returned