London (change)
Today 6°C / 1°C
Tomorrow 6°C / -2°C

Dave Morgan

Latest posts by Dave Morgan

Begonia from plug to corms

Posted: 01/01/2016 at 19:53

Year old corms are small that's why the ones you buy are expensive, the older they get the bigger they get. I wouldn't waste them personally, they're easy enough to grow on later this year and will eventually save you money. Once they get to about 2-3 inches in diameter you can literally cut them into sections, each with a bud and get new corms for free. The only new ones you ever really need to buy are new varieties with new colours or features. 

Agapanthus flowering....?!

Posted: 01/01/2016 at 14:51

I'd wrap them with bubble wrap then fleece them to give them the best protection you can. You make a tent type structure with 4 bamboo canes and then wrap around that securing with garden wire. Long range weather suggests markedly colder weather from late January so I'd get it done asap.

Gentle advice ... for an old newbie.

Posted: 30/12/2015 at 16:17

Hi andi, welcome. I often get called in to situations such as yours and you've done a fine job so far. You've got structure, good design and primarily for easy care no grass.

I see you want roses and dahlias. Some would say neither are easy care, but pick the right ones, feed and prune correctly they're a doddle. Same with dahlias really. The greenhouse is in the right place so starting them off early will be easy. The only precondition for both though is to make sure they're both well fed. An annual application of well rotted manure across the open beds is all that'll be needed, with the odd liquid or granular feed as a post flowering boost.

You may want to consider the addition of a few perennials around the edges of the beds, bare soil isn't pretty,  if you have a look on the RHS website go to perennials and have a look under planting types they list there the best plants for under planting roses. There's only one plant I'd say no to and that's alchemilla mollis. Very nice in the right place but once you have it it's a permanent resident.

Phlox - subulata as ground cover ?

Posted: 29/12/2015 at 22:09

Try Cistus Alan Fradd. Grows to about 2ft x2ft, evergreen and a profusion of white flowers with yellow centres. I have almost the exact same situation in my garden and planted close they'll give good cover, plus they're easy to propagate. They last about 3- 5 years and they do well on mediocre soil.


Posted: 28/12/2015 at 16:34

Maybe I've booby trapped my gravel too often but my shingle is only 10mm. 20mm is a good size for a path and your edging in great, really like the effect.

Sad apple tree

Posted: 28/12/2015 at 16:30

I think I'd star by reducing the overall height first. Prune back to a fruitng spur and then stand back and have a good look. I've seen worse I must say but the aim would be to create an almost bowl shape more open at the centre to let light in. You can afford to lose those lower branches completely and some of those more lateral branches as well. There's plenty of nice upright growth to leave which will give you fruit next year. For me I'd be brave now. Get the shape it's not too big a job to tackle and I think doing that tree over a few years would waste time.


Busy, busy, busy

Posted: 28/12/2015 at 16:11

Pauline those dogs are out of control and as such your neighbour is committing an offence. I'd approach your local council dog warden to see if he can do something about it. 

Lou I've been weeding all day as well. All the perennial weeds are coming out like a dream. Hopefully I'll have less to weed this spring and yes planting the pots works well over winter. I do it all the time.


Posted: 28/12/2015 at 10:32

Hi catnip. A cheap path isn't always the best option as often in the long run it'll cost you more money. But a quick way is to lift the grass, taking up about 2 inches, lay a double thickness of membrane then add your gravel on top. Over time though the gravel will shift sideways and you'll need to add more gravel so edging it is advisable. Cheap edging is wood secured by stakes or you could use lawn edging instead. A more permanent method is to lay a foundation of sharp sand and cement mixed 3 to 1 then put your gravel on top. Cats don't actually like even walking on gravel so I wouldn't worry too much about them using it as a toilet.

Raw manure under new turf?

Posted: 23/12/2015 at 10:07

Verdun, maybe my POV is different. With the current weather and now probable further very wet winter to come little if anything to do with lawn prep is advisable especially when dealing with compacted clay. Let's agree to disagree.

Raw manure under new turf?

Posted: 22/12/2015 at 20:15

Grabs its the wrong time of year to lay turf or sow seed anyway. Despite what Verdun says you could spread manure, but after rotovating then let the worms do the work for you over winter. By the time spring comes it will have settled, then you can concentrate on levelling. Levelling now during this very wet weather will be pointless and as its clay tramping all over it will give you puddling. I'd say yes rotovate and spread it then leave well alone till spring. Doing it that way will also give you an indication if there are drainage problems which can be further tackled in spring.

Discussions started by Dave Morgan

ID please

Replies: 9    Views: 376
Last Post: 25/01/2016 at 21:28

Colder weather on the way

Replies: 1    Views: 320
Last Post: 05/01/2016 at 17:03

Shrub ID please

Replies: 9    Views: 507
Last Post: 02/11/2015 at 21:38

Shrub ID please

Replies: 13    Views: 725
Last Post: 02/10/2015 at 23:10

Shrub/Tree ID please

Replies: 10    Views: 538
Last Post: 26/09/2015 at 10:10

Idea's Please

Replies: 10    Views: 477
Last Post: 18/08/2015 at 16:36

Uploading pics

Replies: 13    Views: 452
Last Post: 22/08/2015 at 18:50

Any idea's as to what this is?

Replies: 15    Views: 648
Last Post: 18/08/2015 at 09:39

Plant ID please

Replies: 3    Views: 361
Last Post: 12/08/2015 at 21:01

plant ID

Replies: 8    Views: 371
Last Post: 30/06/2015 at 18:09

Cut down Perennial Poppy?

Replies: 8    Views: 529
Last Post: 28/06/2015 at 08:50

Shrub ID

Replies: 6    Views: 470
Last Post: 02/04/2015 at 14:08

Uploading pics

Replies: 4    Views: 488
Last Post: 01/06/2015 at 14:50

New Pots in bags

Replies: 12    Views: 579
Last Post: 22/01/2015 at 19:00

Compost Advice

Replies: 11    Views: 755
Last Post: 22/12/2014 at 12:33
1 to 15 of 26 threads