Latest posts by gardenjeannie

Help for flooded gardens

Posted: 06/04/2014 at 02:36

Bugger, just lost my reply.I hate this thing Panda, sent you a PM. Hope you don't mind if I quote it here if I am able with my limited tech ability!

PEANUT3, Thank you so much on behalf of all of the eventual recipients.  If I am excited, in my well-stocked garden, to get my new plants or seeds, how much happier will they be? 

I have been so impressed with the generosity of people here, and I am now splitting my new packs of seeds to give. I can't grow them all, so that seems fair.

Deadline is Weds Morn, 9th April, as courier collecting in a/n, after postie been. Have only extended for the Guides, as they should see their seeds go out in the first batch. We MUST encoruage our new young potential gardeners. They will be the best to embrace new, more sustainable methods.And if their first experience of gardening was to help others, Then they should already have an understanding of how our climate is variable and changing.

This thread could possibly be helping so many people, in so many different ways.For me, I know that I get too many seeds in most packets, and if I sow them all, I have to 'do away' with happy, healthy plants. Who can grow 2000 celery plants? but if I store them, someone else could have had the use of the extra, or I will 'hoard' them until they are viable no more. I feel good to donate my own, and the donations that have come to me have proved how loving and caring all of you other gardeners are. 

Lizzie and Rosie have been moving plants at their own expense, as I will send the seeds. I have roped in my partner to move plants from Ayr to Haydock. Rosie is our Main Head Boss and Co-ordinator. But just moving plants between the few forum members who see this thread and can help is not enough. How do we get more publicity? For more seeds and plants, and how to move them? Transport is the prob at the moment. It was suggested a little while back, I forget by whom, that maybe members might wish to contribute just a little into a fund for transport. I could not see how that could work, once the money was to be sent.He suggested that we make a paypal account and nominate a member with responsibility  to administrate it, initially for courier payments for moving plants. EG, I  have plants ready, but no link to move them. Ring the member responsible, they organise the courier and get the receipt. To save money, perhaps a couple of close-ish members may join to have the courier collect from just one point. ANY ideas gratefully received to save members like Lizzie doing too much Driving, and Rosie having all of the admin and organising to do. Fuel is expensive, and there are far flung members like me who would like to help with well-established plants but cannot afford the carriage alone. Or cannot spare time or fuel, or are just to fer from the next collection point to be able to send useful plants.

One of you out there knows someone with a useful contact.  I know we are all asking more than Artjak's original idea, but it is starting to run away on it's own. I have had so much support in seeds from just a tiny fraction of this hugely popular forum.  The Grow Your Own forum just recently hit it's  first 1 millionth post! This forum must have hit that long ago, looking at just the no of threads on every subject. It is not possible to keep up on here without 'bumps' and notifications.

We are missing a huge audience within the forum. And all of the readers and viewers who never access the forum.

However much we 'Bump' This thread, we are only attracting the same people.


Help for flooded gardens

Posted: 03/04/2014 at 22:41

Artjak, I sold my old big estate BMW and was looking for another car, but nothing was getting me. Then a chance conversation with the kids' swimming instructor brought up that her hubby was selling his car. It turned out to be almost the same make model and yr of my late Mum's very beloved car. The only dffrerence was that this was the hatch and not the saloon, and I need a hatch to transport dogs for the business  that I had discussed starting before her very sudden death at 62.( I used some of my inherited jewellry to start the business, and then felt bad for doing so)

The car was due for its MOT on Mother's day but as that was Sunday, it went in on Mon. And passed. So, they rang me as I had expressed an interest. Not only was it silver, just like Mum's, but it had a name, Elly, after her reg no, ELE at the end. My eldest Niece  Is Elly (Eleanor) Anyway, I got a nice car, lovely drive, high mileage but immaculate in and out, just a couple light scrapes on plastic bumpers,full 12 mth MOT, 5 mths tax. However, I did not ask the usual questions that I normally would have. Last cam belt? Last service? I never looked under the car for corrosion, bushes (just done, I'm told) etc etc. The things that,having serviced my own cars most of my life, I never looked for on this. Some old oil around cylinder block. But no fresh oil. used daily. I have looked online for hundreds of cars. not one did I want to go and see. I insured this before I bought it or saw it, but had checked it's history. 3 owners and 1999 reg. It was meant to be my car. Just hope I'm right with no mechanic checks that is just the face I am pulling now in worry. not confusion, just did I do it right? I feel that so many things told me that this was the car to buy. I am not a believer in strange happenings, nor religious in anyway. But I finally accepted that Mum was gone, then  her car turned up in the hatch version, with my niece's name. eerie!

If an old frind has turned up, in a good place at a good time, it was meant to be. Pls pm me to let me know how it goes. Just in case I may miss a bit of the thread as I can't always get on here, but can more often do a flying visit to check messages. 

Hoping to book the courier tomorrow if time, and hoping the last promised package arrives from Peanut without making an appreciable difference to the weight!

Growing Sweet Peas

Posted: 03/04/2014 at 09:49

I tried sweetpeas for my wedding back in 1995. unfortunately, we got very hot dry weather for a good 6 wks previously. I had a great tan for the day, but my SP couldn't handle it, even with lots of watering. I now know they had powdery mildew, but how I wish I had had the benefit of this forum and David's expertise back then.

Linzy, I think the Gypsophila is easier to grow. It survived that yr when I lost the SP,s. Try it anyway, you canresort to your florist friend after if you have no success. But listen to David. I always thought I was being hard enough on my sp, but have been positively cruel this yr, reading this. They germinated in 18-20*C in prop, then got slung out into GH for 2 days at 2-3C, but were hot in day, so uot to CF for a day a bit cooler, then out altogether. They were started a month ago. Last batch started in unheated conservatory lower daytime temps, but a degree warmer than GH at night. Germinated more slowly, but straight outside once I saw enough were showing shoots. all romping on, am taking notes to see which do best, but I think the later started, colder grown ones already look stronger, if obviously shorter. They should have shorter internodal lengths, I think, which may lead to more flowering shoots eventually, as more potential shoots per length of stem.

I grow tender fuchsias for standard 'trees', and deliberately grow them warm with less light, to get lengthening between the nodes in the first yr. This grows a long 'trunk' quickly, with few nodes that want to flower along the stem. In the second yr, once they have reached the height I want, I keep them much cooler, only frost free, and they grow much shorter shoots then, allowing me to build a very dense, heavily flowering head. I tnink that Davids principles do the same. Having said that, this winter has been so mild that my fuchsias never dropped their leaves, but it was just cold enough that I will struggle to get the long cuttings I need to start new standards from the mother plants, but the established standards will romp away earlier with short growth and early flowering. Indeed, my oldest are flowering already, I had to nip off many buds and 3 full flowers yesterday. The weather could foil your plans, but grow'em hard, as David instructs, and they should be short and strong to start with, but should offer more flowers, than any softly grown ones. I have never grown from an Autumn sowing, axcept for my wedding, the only yr I had a complete failure. But I am entirely sure that that was down to inexperience to some degree, and the weather to a greater degree. They are so easy for beginners most times, and with David's help, you are not a beginner. But follow his instructions to every letter. Soil prep (very important for a timed crop),sowing and planting out times, pest control., picking before the date. Don't allow even one pod to form on a plant.the flowers only last a few days. The more you pick, the more you get. I think David will tell you to remove every single bud on evrey plant until a few days before your big day. Then the plant will be screaming to reproduce, and should throw out flowers left, right, and centre, in a frenzy, hopefully just in time. But I'm not sure you can get enough to make the kind of display David showed you, by your date. If only for table displays mixed with other plants, it depends on how many tables, the size of the vases, the mixer plants to hold them up.  I would grow plenty of complementary plants as well, so that the SP don't have to go so far. remember that the stems are slender with no leaves. It takes a lot to fill a narrow vase alone without fillers of some sort, and they don't last long in oasis. Take into account the amount of arrangements you need to make, and how late you can cut them to be fresh enough. If you are doing your flowers yourself, I would like to bet that you are

Is this earwigs?

Posted: 03/04/2014 at 04:04

Just had whoever to check my gas reading. the box is in front garden on the wall above my hostas. It was absolutely full of snails. No idea how the bigger ones get in and out to eat, as I can't see a big enough hole for some of them. but they were Thrush food once I found them. How come none of the meter readers mentioned them before? That explains leaves eaten from top downwards, which always confused me. Check gas meter boxes, or any outside ones. Little bar steward, crafty so n so's! Out with the torch once enough shoots to protect. With a container of salt, now I know they have a homing instinct. No more mrs nice guy, with a chance on top of neighbours garage roof. not getting back to me again!


Posted: 03/04/2014 at 03:48

Sorry for the not so friendly welcome. I am quite nice, really! I definately agree with covering any areas that you are not working on yet, if you wish to avoid spraying. You can never grow all that you want to on any land, in your first year, unless it was well cultivated when you got it. I would say dig the first area you want to use, as above, and cover the rest. Even tough perrenial weeds will eventually give up the ghost with no light for a whole yr. Those that don't, you could then resort to spraying with glyphosate after removing the cover and allowing them to grow on for a wkk or two. Try a 24hr weedkiller,(but they never are!) and wait till the topgrowth has gone. Glyphosate will allow you to replant immediately after the weeds are dead. You could plant the day after spraying, but you would have to plant around the weeds as if you disturb possibly live roots, you will have more than before. Patience in your first couple of years will reward you tenfold the next. You cannot rush clearing ground.

You could apply it soon, once the weeds are growing strongly, but they MUST die before you cultivate the soil. There will be hard work, the old fashioned way for your first grow season.

I know it sounds strange to let the weeds grow first, but they need to have enough leaf area to absorb the spray, and be growing strongly enough that it will be carried through the whole plant quickly. Young,weak or slow growing plants can survive a lot more chemical abuse than you think, as they are not moving enough water etc through their systems yet.

Do not even consider the types of weedkiller sold for paths. It will kill the weeds, but you will not be able to re-plant for a very long time. Glyphosate (Round-up, Resolve, etc) are your only option, as it becomes inactive in contact with the soil. Always read the small print on the label, especially ingredients if given!

I hope this gave you enough info to choose methods. Charles Dowding would be good to look up if you want to grow organically with less hard work. Almost everything you see on this forum is advice from members who have tried it themselves. I wish I had known about it in my first yrs of growing. You may find conflicting advice occasionally, in which case I would advise that you ask which part of what County the member is from, and see what advice you can get from someone nearer to you. But on an allotment, I would say be friendly and ask for as much advise from your neighbours as possible. Some will have grown there for yrs, and can tell you what will work there and what can't. There will always be differences of opinion, but you will get many different ideas from them and from here, and can filter all of it to suit your position. One person may say you can't grow pineapples, for example, but I'm sure I know someone on here who I willl be asking so I can try! He's also very good on composting and worms composting.

Edd, come help here?

So many skills are represented here, that new gardeners would struggle NOT to succeed with something. And as you learn more, you will have more specific questions that get you more specific answers. Stay tuned. Sometimes there are cakes! (if only virtually!) And watch out for Verdun. A fount of info he may be, but all he wants is cakes. Very fickle

You will soon come to meet the most knowledgeable members. They can be found on many threads. Most have some specialist knowledge,along with general, All are friendly, and the nicest bunch of people you will meet on any forum anywhere. I know for sure that they will always say 'Just Ask'. There is also a lot of fun on here. It is most definitely not a stuffy, boring forum, except for me. We even have a joke thread! although insults are thrown on there, regularly!


Posted: 03/04/2014 at 02:23

I can't sow direct cos of mice, so always start in frame. Squidgy, I used to live in Chorley, and would have put mine out by now down there, but it is the drying winds that I try to avoid here.(Ayrshire, Scotland) Harden them of just for a few days and get them out without potting on. Less messing, and peas are very hardy. once mine germinate, they will be chucked out of the CF, then planted up once big enough to withstand the odd slug nibble. But still give slug protection if you are botheresd much by them. A good post is the Sweet Pea one.  David tells time and time again to treat them hard, and peas come into the same category. Get em out and make room for other stuff needing their space. I treat all of my plants as hard as poss from as young as poss, only using heat for germination or cuttings. Once 60-80% have germinated in the propagator, they come out. At first with a cover into GH or conservatory, then the lid comes off, then a few days later they are out but lid back on if frost. Only the toms and peppers get to stay indoors, and some of them go out as soon as poss if they are destined to grow outside.

Having said that, my tender fuchsias never dropped thier leaves in an unheated gh this yr. It has been a very mild winter, and still is mostly mild now. chuck em out! But be ready with a bit of fleece if we should get a proper frost. Normally you would need to harden off for longer, but I'm going to wing it this yr and chuck em straight out into my warmed beds. Sow more now for a continuous supply, and only chuck half out if you are worried. Nowt lost, excepting mice you can sow direct now.

 Peas are easy, wait till bean time. They can be fussy! You will need to be a little nicer to them!



Posted: 03/04/2014 at 01:47

Years ago, when my last dog was only very young, back in England, I was walking him late and saw a Mummy with 3 babies crossing the rd. I was amazed how big she was, and also how quickly they can move if they need to. I was scared they may curl up on the rd when they saw us then get run over, but they just scurried on. A  lovely sight. Dad brought one home that he nearly ran over when I was little, for us to see, and I was amazed that the spines were not as hard as I expected. Although it may have been young. It was certainly nowhere as big as that mum I saw so many yrs later. Mum just yelled about fleas! She was a city person!

Happy Mothers Day.

Posted: 03/04/2014 at 01:37

Lily, BB and mrsgarden.

Thank you so much for those messages of support, and the presents of hugs and confidence. We all lose our Mums eventually, but it is always hard, and takes a good while to get over. It is perhaps a little easier for those of us with kids, although we want to share every little acheivement.

I love the idea of spring bulbs in time for Mother's Day next yr. Perhaps we could get back together in Oct to make our plans?

And a bit of news. I bought that car yesterday! Never told the boys, so Sean came in asking about it sitting on the drive, and asked me if it was Nanna's car, and did Poppa give it to us! He said it even smelled the same! A lot of wishful thinking there, but I did feel Mum as I drove away in it.(he forgot she had a new car before she died!) It passed the MOT on Mon, so she was there. And it is called Elly, my first niece's nick name!  Meant to be? A messege from Mum? Hope it's ok, never got a mechanic to check it, but she drives like a dream and has hardly a mark for a 1999 model.

It was so lovely to hear more about your Mums, and your feelings about them after I whinged on. I feel so much less alone now, and much less need to pretend to be strong. I cried reading your replies, which was probably a healthy thing to do.

So let's all go with Mrs G's idea next yr, and celebrate our Mums with growing flowers from bulbs. It will remind us that when they are gone, they are still with us, in our hearts, souls and genes. And as the flowers grow every yr, and perhaps hybridize, that can remind us that our children carry a part of our Mums, too. My Sean has Mum's serene and happy temperament and outlook on life, while I and William are fiery and grumpy, but W is cautious in choosing friends, and wary. I jump in with both feet and get hurt later. I see Mum in both of them, but I only see her in the mirror, not in my temperament at all. I look like her, more every day. I wish I could act like her too.

What do you see of your Mums in yourselves or your kids? And what reminds you of her most, away from Mother's Day?


Time to get busy!

Posted: 03/04/2014 at 00:52

Anyway, great to see 'youngsters' liking their gardens again. Maybe we can save the planet after all.

Edd, easy herb recipes please?

Time to get busy!

Posted: 03/04/2014 at 00:46

Ha, you newbies? We're all newbies on a site like this. It just serves to show us all how little we know and how much more we want to know. My wish list reaches to the end of our rd and back!

The calendula (marigold) cream, I saw on some tv prog. It involved putting all the petals, crushed up, into an oil. I think they use sunflower, but I thought I might try Almond. Put in a container for a period of time that I can't remember (just as I can't remember the prog!) and shake it a couple of times a day. Then decant and use the oil, either alone, or made into cream with an emulsifier that might possibly have been glycerine?.

Ask Edd, he'll know

Edd, Edd, please?

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