Latest posts by Dovefromabove

Too late to prune zephirine drouhin?

Posted: 15/03/2014 at 15:55

Nope, not brutal - just what it needs - trust me.  Growth follows the knife 


Posted: 15/03/2014 at 15:48

As well as spreading manure and mulching I've  sown some sunflower seeds between the terrace where we sit out and the fruit patch, and planted a new thyme and oregano as the ones we have don't always keep up with demand.

At some stage this morning, probably while I came in for coffee a sparrowhawk must've taken one of our woodpigeons - just some feathers left and no way a cat could've removed it from the garden without trace - the feathers were exactly where some were left last year when OH watched a sparrowhawk take one of the pigeons. We do get peregrines take pigeons off the roof, but I don't think a peregrine would come right down into the garden which is fairly enclosed.

KEF  I did think of going and picking it up, but they don't seem to do that .... it's ok, I can keep myself busy while I wait 


Posted: 15/03/2014 at 14:49

Turned chilly outside now the sun (what sun???) is over the other side of the house so I'm indoors - dangerous being indoors - I've just ordered one of my favourite roses for the sunnier end of the Shady Bank, outside the dining room window - I've grown this rose in two other gardens and it's been a delight each time - it's only failing is that it's scent is slight - but it'll be growng near a clump of Sweet Rocket and some honeysuckle - I've been trying to find a better rose for that spot, but it's got them all beat!  It flowers all summer long and is the prettiest thing.  Beautiful for cutting too  Although it's described as a ground cover rose it can reach over a metre in height and as the bank is at least a couple of feet high that'll be perfect.  As it's replacing a very old scarlet climber that was here when we moved in, I've ordered a containerised one to give it every chance - I've also dug in a big pile of FYM so it should be fine. 

Should be here in 10 - 14 days says the email, but as they're only a few miles down the road maybe it'll be sooner than that 


Courgettes - when dare I ............... ?

Posted: 15/03/2014 at 14:09

I usually sow my courgettes in fibre pots indoors, then grow them on in the mini-greenhouse, eventually planting out into a raised bed in early June.

I have a plastic cover which I could erect over the raised bed, like this one 

and I'm wondering whether there would be any advantage to fitting the cover, warming the bed up and direct sowing the courgettes into the raised bed, keeping the cover over until all threat of frost and cold weather has passed?

Do you think I would get an earlier crop, and if so, how early would you risk sowing directly into the raised bed?



Posted: 15/03/2014 at 13:00

I inspect mine whenever I'm in the garden and squidge the beetles when I see them.  I also use tissue or kitchen roll to wipe the underside of the leaves to remove the larvae which are what do the damage.  So far I manage to get away without too much damage.  

Good luck 


Posted: 15/03/2014 at 12:43

Just come in for a bowl of soup -  have been spreading manure on the veg patch - it's ok, I've washed my hands 


Posted: 15/03/2014 at 12:40

I would dig the manure into the bed. 

I would apply micorrhizhal fungi to the roots of the roses (following instructions on the pack),


after planting I would sprinkle some Fish Blood & Bone over the soil surface and 'tickle' it in with a hoe.

Black Lace Elder

Posted: 15/03/2014 at 12:18

Following Verdun's advice will be great if you are growing the shrub purely for the foliage - and I know that's Verdun's special enthusiasm  - but Sambucus flowers on old wood so if you want the flowers/fruit you should prune after these are over, or only prune  a proportion of the stems each year. 

Sorry Verdun 

Black Lace Elder

Posted: 15/03/2014 at 11:38

There was a discussion about this a while back - look here 

Hope that's helpful 


Posted: 15/03/2014 at 11:25

Well done for taking the cuttings!  

We've had a very wet winter and rosemary really dislikes having permanently wet feet so as Nutcutlet has said, this may be the beginning of the end.  After the wet summer of 2012 I removed my rosemary from the herb bed which seemed that summer to be permanently under water, and potted it up in a large terracotta pot with JI3 loambased compost and one third horticultural grit.  It's never looked back 

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1 to 15 of 84 threads