Latest posts by Dovefromabove

Planting an Art-Deco Raised Border

Posted: 22/07/2012 at 07:39

That's come on quite well considering the season we've had - I should think you're justifiably very pleased.  I haven't even bothered with hanging baskets and tubs this year - been too busy nurturing perennials in the cold and damp.

Is your garden south facing?

shasta seeds

Posted: 22/07/2012 at 07:36

Don't know of anywhere selling the seeds in the UK, but you can buy plug plants from Thomson & Morgan - their Shasta Collection includes one of the varieties you're seeking


Posted: 22/07/2012 at 07:30

Thanks for the info about Suttons - that'll certainly be where I look for any seeds I need 

As we've moved into a new (to us) garden which had been neglected for several years, we're working hard to ensure that anything we do doesn't remove insect habitat, or if it does, then we endeavour to replace it with something of at least equal value.

As I think I've said before I come from a farming family, and here in East Anglia some farmers are noticing the lack of beneficial insects and some are taking steps to try to remedy what has happened - the problem is they are tied to contracts with the big supermarkets and these contracts control every aspect of how a crop is produced - until the public understands what is going on and puts pressure on the supermarkets the growers have their hands tied if they wish to stay in business (it's  a bit like the current probems in the dairy industry).


Posted: 21/07/2012 at 21:25

I've grown Rambling Rector, Rosa Mundi and Graham Thomas.  The Rambling Rector was a wonderful burglar deterrent on our boundary when we lived in a slightly dodgy area and there was a Back Alley which was used by all sorts.  It's perfume was wonderful and it was always absolutely covered with large sprays of  gorgeous little creamy-white blooms  - we left there in 1999l - I wonder if it's still proving effective against intruders - it's probably taken over the whole street by now .

Rosa Mundi was a present to my elderly mother who loved the colour, but it didn't enjoy her light seaside soil and took a long time to get established - eventually it formed a reasonable size bush but flowered only intermittantly - think it could have done with a bit more tlc on that soil than it got from Ma. I did what I could but Ma and her gardener knew best 

Graham Thomas, gorgeous egg-yellow climber with a lovely perfume - I planted it against the south-west facing creamy-coloured brick wall of the garden studio and it only took a couple of years or so to cover the wall - really successful and one I'd grow again if I wanted a climbing yellow rose.

You've definitely got yourself a bargain there 

Help! Have I got Japenese Knotweed growing in my garden?

Posted: 21/07/2012 at 20:55

Yes, Himalayan Balsam.  Pull it up BEFORE IT SEEDS, put it in a bin bag with some water, let it rot down and take it to the tip.  The seeds are catapulted high and for yards and yards, so it's likely that one of your neighbours has a plant.

 At our last address a next door neighboour sowed a few seeds.  The flowers looked lovely and the bees loved it, he said.  The following year we had seedlings springing up all over the place.  They're pretty easy to identify even when they're quite small so we just made sure we pulled everyone we saw up and destroyed it.  If you pull it and leave it on the soil it will re-root!

 Within 3 years the next door garden was totally overgrown with HB, and the tenant moved out.  The landlord mowed it down and installed a membrane and shingle.  I bet seedlings are still trying to find a way through or around the membrane.

We moved - not because of the HB, but because of the unpredictability of having ever-changing tenants next door - and to get a much bigger garden 


Posted: 21/07/2012 at 19:33

We don't use any insecticides or slug pellets - if it'll kill insects it'll upset the balance of nature - the birds, hedgehogs, bats, frogs and toads etc seem to keep things in check here - and we live on the edge of a city so if it works here it'll surely work anywhere.

And I just don't believe that something that'll kill one type of insect can be harmless to another. When I was a child the summer evening air was full of moths as we drove through the countryside, sometimes it was like driving through a cloud and the windscreen needed cleaning when we got home - when was the last time anyone saw insect life like that in the UK?  Something has happened to really reduce the numbers of insects and it's really worrying.

I come from a farming family - I know how dependent we are on pollinating insects to provide our food.  There's a school of thought that says it's better for the planet for us to eat less meat and more veg but how will that work if the veg can't be pollinated to make seeds???

Keeping Cats off of Garden - Tried and Tested Ideas only please

Posted: 21/07/2012 at 16:01

At our last house OH would stick his head out of the upstairs back window and bark like a Border Terrier at cats coming over the fence - they invariably turned tail and most gave up trying - but he was working from home and could keep an eye on the back fence - and most of the neighbours were at work 

Mysterious plant

Posted: 21/07/2012 at 15:43

However, if it's Green Alkanet rather than Borage, get rid of every little tiny bit 

Leggy sedums

Posted: 21/07/2012 at 15:40

I think the way it works is that if you do this while the days are getting longer you will get flowers that season, but if you do it after the longest day you won't.  

I might be wrong, but I'm sure I heard it somewhere, but it might be a myth.

Anyway, I agree with Geoff, I wouldn't do it now.

Mysterious plant

Posted: 21/07/2012 at 14:55

Don't get rid of it all - it has it's uses. We might have some sunshine some time and it is traditional with Pimms

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