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Latest posts by Dovefromabove

Leeks,Carrots & Cabbage

Posted: 14/04/2014 at 13:07

Mikey - I'm worried about those cabbage seedlings  , they're far too long and thin because they're getting insufficient light and the temperature is too warm.  They should be short and stocky like this


as Steve says, get them outside as soon as possible, and until then turn them around every day - you can increase the even-ness of the light they're getting by putting a sheet of white card behind them - this will reflect light back on them, as a photographer does with white parasols and big white sheets of card.

Don't want to be a pessimist, but to be honest I'd sow another lot, much more thinly and give them much better light.  Sorry. 

Million Bells from last year

Posted: 14/04/2014 at 13:00

I would repot in fresh compost and cut them hard back - they don't usually survive our winters but they are perennials so if you cut them back they'll grow nice and bushy and flower again. 

You could try making cuttings from the bits you prune off.

Weedkiller to use before new lawn?

Posted: 14/04/2014 at 12:32

For a play lawn I would patch, fill the holes, re seed the patches etc.  We had three large skips standing on our front lawn for an entire summer - you cannot imagine how it looked when they were removed, large ant hills, tall weeds all around the bases of the skips and three bare patches each about 8' x 6' - we took out the weeds by digging around the roots with a sharp kitchen knife, mowed and mowed and mowed, raked the bare patches, levelled with some topsoil and scattered some lawn seed and waited.  We now have a perfectly respectable front lawn.  (A few dandelions again, but I'll get to grips with them soon.)  April or September are the perfect time to do this. 

We had thought about getting it re-turfed - that would've cost hundreds of pounds - what I did cost about £25.

But first you need to get out there, raise the bar on the mower and mow it - now - don't want to nag, but the main problem with your lawn is that it's not ever been mowed regularly - those weeds wouldn't be as big as they are if you'd mowed it regularly last year ................. I'll get my coat 

Protecting railway sleepers, what have you used?

Posted: 14/04/2014 at 12:25

We've not used anything - we like the way they're developing a patina and blending into the garden.  However, if you want something less natural and smarter, I'd use one of the coloured fence paints - we've recently used Cuprinol Garden Shades Seagrass on our fences and are very pleased with it.  Our builder recommended it as being good quality.

Weedkiller to use before new lawn?

Posted: 14/04/2014 at 11:27

If it was me (and I'm well aware I'm not you and I only know part of the story here) I'd have a go at renovating that lawn.  I've dealt with far worse and got -a decent play-lawn out of it. 

My guess is that when you turfed it you used the lawn far too soon so it became uneven - you have to keep off freshly laid turf for quite a while, and after than, only gentle walking, not heavy duty play!  It has also not been mowed regularly enough.  Lawns need mowing at least once a week, sometimes more, right through the growing season.

I would kill off or dig out the bigger weeds (I've zoomed in - there aren't that many) and mow the lawn with a rotary mower set on high.  Treat with an all in one Weed & Feed and keep mowing - the grass will begin to grow outwards rather than upwards - then you can fill in any hollows with topsoil and seed over them - you'll soon have a lovely green lawn.  It will never be a bowling green, but you have children - you don't want a bowling green.  Soon you will be able to lower the mower blade, but never cut it very low - it will scalp the grass and weaken it.  Little and often is the way to get a good lawn.

Even if you take all that grass up and turf it now, your new lawn will not be able to withstand children playing on it 24/7 (or even 12/7) for the first season.  

If you do what I suggest they can play on the lawn all this summer - just ask them to be careful of the re-seeded bits - they can even have little watering cans and water them for you when the sun is shining. 

Japanese knotweed shoots & Mower contamination ?

Posted: 14/04/2014 at 11:14

If it's JKW you won't have to wait for long 

Expensive gardening mistake - help needed

Posted: 14/04/2014 at 10:56

Hasn't Monty Don created a raised garden overlooking a meadow - with a firepit on top of it?

Pebble boarder despair.

Posted: 14/04/2014 at 10:50

That looks to me as if it's intended as an edging to prevent  damage to the fencing from damp soil - there's no gravel board at the bottom of the fence -  and as John Mcleod says, to act as drainage channels.

They're not wide enough to use as flower beds anyway.  

If you want flower beds then I would create them inside the lawn area.  The gravel area will enable you to paint your fence easily without walking on your plants and will be very useful.


Posted: 14/04/2014 at 09:38

KEF   Think he owes you ................ maybe a trip to the GC? 

Many years ago I'd lost weight and was gardening - threw a pile of prunings onto the heap - ring flew off and went with them !!!  I stood stock still and stared and stared - there it was, hanging on a twig!!!   I think it's amazing more rings aren't lost and found in gardens. 


Posted: 14/04/2014 at 09:26


As for clearing parents' houses - we cleared my parents' house when they went into residential care - siblings' contributions aren't always helpful   My son and son in law were complete stars!   Family heirlooms were distributed as per their Wills - some stuff went to auction, some to charities, some to tip.  Boxes and boxes of 'precious belongings that they have no room or need  for where they are, and important paperwork' reside in our garage!!!  Can't get rid of it - it's still theirs - can't do anything with it - it's just taking up space and I can't get to anything of mine in there    When one of them goes we'll have to access some of it quite quickly - it'll be chaos! 

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