Latest posts by Fairygirl

Wildlife pond digging out

Posted: 05/10/2016 at 17:41

I've had ponds of all sizes and shapes over the years, and they will freeze depending on the severity of the winter and the duration of the sub zero temps. However, it really does depend on where the pond is, what's round it in terms of planting etc for protection, and where you are in the country.  None of mine have ever frozen by more than 6 inches. Two of them have had fish in them. One was very deep in the middle and had a natural, constantly moving water source at one end, so that bit was free of ice but the rest froze quite extensively. The other pond was a 'conventional' sized garden pond of about 18"/ 21" at the deepest point. I'm quite far north, and once ice forms on water, it stays for quite a long time.

I use a piece of polystyrene which has an indentation on the underside. It's tied to the surrounds of the pond with string, wire or similar, and that keeps a space unfrozen. 

When to cut back for winter

Posted: 05/10/2016 at 17:30

Start by clicking on the camera icon in the top right hand corner of the box you post in Rach. That's where you can upload photos. They have to be under about 2.5 MB just now - anything bigger won't load so you may have to resize. 

Buddleias can be damaged by the wind as they get top heavy, so you can take some of the branches back by a third or so. That helps a lot.  I've just done mine.

Rosemary is evergreen so only needs a trim as and when needed. They tend to get a bit rough after a few years anyway, but you can take cuttings or sow from seed  to get new plants. Things like foxgloves and lupins can be cut back when all the stems have died back, although many people leave them over winter to provide a place for insects to shelter or hibernate. Sage doesn't survive here in the wet, but you would normally just leave it and tidy in spring if it's too big. Chopping back now may leave it vulnerable to frost, but it would depend on where you are and how cold it gets etc. 

Sorry - don't grow roses or fuchsias, but someone else will be able to advise on those. You'll get advice on your other shrubs once they've been identified   

Last edited: 05 October 2016 17:30:24

Chimney planter advice please

Posted: 05/10/2016 at 17:22

Would be worth giving it a go Julia. as Verdun says, it would be difficult to find much that would be happy  in them long term otherwise. 

Tulips in pots

Posted: 05/10/2016 at 17:16

It's pretty straightforward....

Cover the drainage hole with crocks or similar, put some decent compost in your chosen pot, leaving approximately 6 or 7 inches for filling to the finished level. Put bulbs in, cover with more compost. Poke a few pansies in if that's what you want, or cover with gravel. Water.  Job done. 

Cutting Back Strawbs - Monty

Posted: 05/10/2016 at 12:48

I have a few young plants which are producing some flowers and fruit, mainly because they're partially undercover. It's too late though for them to come to anything, so I've just taken them off. It doesn't really benefit the plants to try and produce anything unnecessarily, and I'd rather they were better plants next year.

It largely depends on your growing conditions and the age of the plants etc. though.

HELLO FORKERS! October Edition

Posted: 05/10/2016 at 12:42

T'bird - -that Grand Tours series is slightly less scenic than some of the others, but quite good all the same. Glad you liked  the pic. There's a whole load of them on the camera thread too. 

Dove - hope the physio helped. There was plenty of wooden stuff being advertised here earlier. Ideal for a big bonfire ... 

A builder with plenty of tools Clari. Just what you need, as long as they actually use them and don't just drink your tea....

How soon to wait after applying lawn weed and feed before sowing seed

Posted: 05/10/2016 at 12:37

I'd leave it till spring now Diskob. You could remove dead material if you want, but seed is unlikely to germinate now unless you're in a really mild area. It's simply too cold now. 

Spring is the ideal time to get stuck in and sort any issues. Cut the grass regularly, if conditions allow, but don't cut it too short. It will recover a bit and be better prepared for the winter weather onslaught 


Posted: 05/10/2016 at 08:12

Dan - it's prolonged exposure to wet conditions that's more likely to see them off. Many plants can withstand a fair bit of dry cold - often more than they're supposed to - as long as the roots aren't sitting in cold wet soil. 

If you have a shelterd spot - near a house wall for instance-  that can help protect them. Small plants will need a bit more. An odd night here and there of frost probably won't do much harm, but small plants always need more protection than bigger ones. 

Camera Talk

Posted: 05/10/2016 at 08:06

That's gorgeous Pat. I've said it before here, but , it's so important to look up isn't it?  I think we often forget how wonderful the stuff above our head is!  Cloud formations are stunning.

I'm much more aware of it when I'm on a hill on a day like Sunday. The buzzards were out and the stags bellowing up in the corries, so looking up to try and see them gives a whole new perspective. 

HELLO FORKERS! October Edition

Posted: 05/10/2016 at 08:00

Morning all/afties Pat. Dog seems happy enough - how are you keeping these days? 

A day off chicky? How very dare you 

DD - it's all progress. You'll have days when it seems difficult again, and a bit like I was on Sunday on that hill - one step forward and about three back - but it's like the old question of how do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time...  

Chilly here but dry and bright. The girl on the Scottish news has a lovely rising sun behind her   

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