Excitable Boy

Latest posts by Excitable Boy

Buying plants on line

Posted: 02/12/2012 at 12:17

Looks good (but don't they all!!). To be fair to T&M when I complained (by phone) about the begonias they gave me a refund straight away and said just keep the plants. As they were too small to do anything with this didn't exactly help, but I appreciate the gesture. i just had the feeling that the seeds hadn't been sown when I ordered which is not acceptable.

The jerseyplants website has 160 4-8cm begonias for £15. No way could I grow them for that, but do I really need 160?

Foxglove seedlings

Posted: 02/12/2012 at 12:02
Hollie- Hock wrote (see)

--- and hopefully they will self seed as well

LOL, I don't think you'll find that to be a problem! They get everywhere!


Talkback: How to make a composting trench

Posted: 30/11/2012 at 20:41

Looking at the pic again I think they're probably parsnip peelings. (Eyesight is going ). Peas and sweet peas are a good idea. No point runner beans as nobody likes them except me!

Talkback: How to make a composting trench

Posted: 30/11/2012 at 19:13

A couple of questions:

- If you put potato peelings in a trench like this won't they sprout?

- Can you grow other crops like lettuce or spring onions using this system or would it be too rich?

Gardeners World TV

Posted: 30/11/2012 at 17:29

June, I have PM'd you a link.

Really sad to think that Geoff Hamilton has been dead for 16 years - I still miss him!

Holes in soil

Posted: 30/11/2012 at 11:36

Yes, I agree - looks like worm holes to me, too small for mice, too regular for birds.

Talkback: Making leaf mould

Posted: 29/11/2012 at 22:03

Like Tivi most of the leaves in our garden are magnolia. Can you make leaf mould from these in a reasonable timeframe? I, too, have been putting ours in the green bin!


Posted: 29/11/2012 at 20:51

I have tried growing sprouts many, many times and have given up as I could never get a decent crop. Loose sprouts are generally due to loose planting as far as I am aware.

Unless you really like sprouts, Alan, I would suggest you stick to Purple Sprouting Broccoli - far easier to grow and a much superior taste!

Buying plants on line

Posted: 29/11/2012 at 20:39

I just can't decide what is best - growing from seed, or buying plugs. I grew quite a lot of flowers from seed this year. The biggest problem being that you get masses of the same flower! I also bought quite a bit from T&M and other online suppliers. In general I found these to be good quality although I have to say that T&M were very late with several deliveries. Almost always delivered on the last day of their window and in the case of some begonias too late and too small to be of any use. I also bought some great value plants from poundland, so it pays to keep a lookout. (I bought some tulip bulbs last week from a local hardware store at £1 for 15. OK a little late but as I haven't got the dahlias out of the bed yet it doesn't matter!)

In general I find the Garden centres vastly overpriced. Best money I spent last year garden wise was on the electrics for a large heated propagator as described on one of the how to articles. Saved me a fortune!

Talkback: Hedgehog spotting

Posted: 29/11/2012 at 20:21


Suecamp wrote (see)
 I have put some water outside and some food that I bought specially from a pet shop as I wasn't sure what they ate apart from slugs and snails.
I'm now hoping that they'll help me next year when they come out of hibernation by eating the slugs and snails on my vegetable garden!


Guys/Girls, Please be aware that Hedgehogs DO NOT eat large numbers of slugs and snails. The majority of a hedgehog's diet comprises insects, beetles, caterpillars, small vertebrates and sometimes eggs. They will eat about 5% slugs and snails but only if VERY hungry. Slugs and snails are a very bad food for hedgehogs as they contain lots of lungworm larvae and fluke larvae both of which are killers.

If you see a hog out in the daytime (ever) or any small hedgehogs at this time of year please pick them up and take them to a hedgehog rescue centre asap. Hedgehogs need to weigh at least 800g to hibernate successfully, so if you see smaller ones now please rescue them immediately. Pop them in a bucket, put a towel on top of them, bring inside to keep them warm and call the centre. If you do find a small one please check around as there will frequently be siblings. Most hedgehogs have hibernated by now. They do wake up to eat and drink but only for very short periods, so most you see out and about now are in trouble.

I have a couple of injured hogs in my walled garden who came from a rescue centre as they are too damaged to survive in the wild. They are truly lovely little animals, (although not terribly bright) and it is very rewarding to see them bumbling around at dusk. The simplest and best food for them is a meat based small cat or kitten biscuit. If you regularly see hogs in your garden it would be kind to keep some out, preferably in a catproof feeder (see websites mentioned above for design), as well as some fresh water for hibernating hedgehogs who have stirred.

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