Latest posts by frensclan

Small pond

Posted: 14/11/2014 at 19:48

I recently saw a thread where someone had simply sunk an old plastic washing up bowl into the ground and then planted a few smaller marginal plants  in it. Within a couple of months they had posted a picture of a frog enjoying the water and the plant life  So I guess no bit of water is too small to enhance your garden.

Price watch

Posted: 11/10/2014 at 15:24

Yes I have had good success with plants from Aldi. Clematis and roses are particularly good.

Are these damsons or sloes please?

Posted: 16/09/2014 at 09:09

I always notice in the spring where the blackthorn is because it is one of the first trees to flower a lovely white froth of flowers on bare branches. That is the only way I could differentiate them from hawthorn until the fruits form of course . So if it is in an area you are familiar with look out for it next year. When you have been foraging for a while you get to know where things are of course. I am fortunate in that my dad taught me all I know and I am still visiting the same sites I went to with him as a child

Are these damsons or sloes please?

Posted: 15/09/2014 at 08:07

I have been looking up Buckthorn our of interest and found this site.

Don't know if it is of help but found it interesting to browse through? plus another good site I found is

Many sites feature warnings about the risk to animals if they ingest part of the plant of Alder Buckthorn and some American sites warn of a risk to people but as far as I can see the habit of these bushes is quite distinct.


Are these damsons or sloes please?

Posted: 14/09/2014 at 19:01

Hi, the fruit you have is as I said the wild damson and great for using as are the fruit of the blackthorn ; the sloe. only the thorns to be careful of. Obviously as the tree you picked from had no thorns this confirms you have damsons  Good wine/gin/pudding making.

Are these damsons or sloes please?

Posted: 14/09/2014 at 14:05

I seem to be replying to two different threads with the same lead but as I replied to the other one these are sloes and perfectly good for great sloe gin and wines etc. I think you  might be thinking of the thorns re caution as this is the blackthorn tree/bush and the thorns are poisonous if you get one in your skin.

Are these damsons or sloes please?

Posted: 14/09/2014 at 14:01

I agree they look more like wild damsons than sloes. I have just picked my sloes and they are a little smaller and are "very" bitter to the taste. Did you notice what the twigs were like as the sloe is from the blackthorn and this has lots of very sharp thorns which can cause a bit of damage. We forage  for sloes most years and I never come back uninjured! In fact this year I was really badly scratched and that even with the other half holding back the branches for me.

Anyways I don't see why they will not make sloe gin or whatever you are thinking of as damsons can be used for similar and wine etc.

Even a micro pond helps!

Posted: 11/09/2014 at 17:54

Yes I saw the Alan Titchmarsh  bog garden programme and had made one of these in a previous garden. Really easy. I just dug out a bit of the ground behind my old pond and then laid down some old rubber sheeting with lots of holes spiked in it. Covered it over with the soil again and planted some moisture loving plants in it. This just slows down the rate at which the rain gets through the soil and keeps it nice and damp It got going really quickly and provided lots of cover for wild life.

Also I have seen a really miniature water lily if you really want one in a small pond. I think it was I one of the gardening magazines and they had made a pond out of a large glazed plant pot!

Even a micro pond helps!

Posted: 08/09/2014 at 17:33

Hi Lindsay, can you remember which plants you bought for your micro pond? I only ask as my local pond people are in a multi chain thingy and the assistants a bit fey when asked a question! so I shall probably have to buy from the internet.  I am assuming they were a dwarf variety of something a bit like a rock garden on land? You must be delighted at how your wonderful project has spurred so many people on to have a go

Even a micro pond helps!

Posted: 08/09/2014 at 10:27

This is all so inspiring and of course as with Hester's cautionary tale above reminds us of how greatly we can affect natural processes. I have a s I said before newts well (newtlets) really  and I have read that they move away from the pond once adult for up to three years and live on land. I wonder if they pop back now and them into the water? does anyone our there know if frogs toads and newts use the pond all year round or like the newts do frogs and toads live on land for much of the time?

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