Latest posts by gardenjeannie

Talkback: Sowing tomato seed

Posted: 03/04/2014 at 00:29

I swore I would not buy new seeds this yr, just finish last yrs. I know how you feel, Lisa! But have never tried Sungold, so I thought, ok, just them, but was cheaper to buy them with Suncherry, so, ok. Ha. Had to get more San Marzano, as they made wonderful ketchup, so for good measure got another italian one for sauces (can't remember the name). That's besides my usual standbys. Also really want to try ildi, green sausage, etc etc. Spend far more time cutting down my list than making it!

And you're right, the 'Internerd' is wicked I'll be calling it that forever now, instead of 't'internet'!

Talkback: New Zealand flatworms

Posted: 03/04/2014 at 00:17

I'm really glad of that advice, Edd, as I was hoping to send some hostas to another forum member, and plants down to the Somerset Levels. I have a large dog bath with hot running water, so will try the immersion process first. Good to see the eggs to know what to destroy, Thank You.


Posted: 02/04/2014 at 23:55

I have just found this thread, HappyMarion, and it has blown me away. What an inspiration you are! You make me feel totally lazy. I have a completely child-free day and night tomorrow, so am hoping for good weather to tidy my garden and sow my first outdoor seeds in my toasty warm raised beds that have been covered for wks with polythene. Fleece cut and waiting, but it has been too windy so far! How great to have lighter nights to stay out longer!

I will be watching your thread avidly now, for more ideas. Though how you fit in painting, writing etc is beyond me! I am not able to get nr my cross-stitch once the garden wakes up! Still read lots at bedtime, but computer time is really hard to find.

My neighbour is 89 this year, and has recently lost a lot of mobility, and she really misses being able to get out to her garden, so I try to take it indoors for her. Your displays have shown me how many more of her plants I can take in, that I would never have thought of. The Big magnolia is about to burst open soon, so I think I will try floating some flowers from that with her pink/red camellias. Could that work? I grew the primula 'Firecracker' for her from seed this yr, and it has performed beautifully, along with Pansy'Flamenco' inpots, through really bad weather.

Thank you for a wonderful, entertaining post.

And I would love to vote for you too, if Edd can explain exactly how.


Posted: 02/04/2014 at 21:37

I wish my children were that quiet, Matt, and made as little mess

They look lovely and healthy, well done. Mine weren't planned, I think they have self seeded from my neighbour, but they are lovely, nonetheless. Think I will move them this yr so I can see them better.

Just realised that I could have meant the kids, then The LUPINS and DELPHS self-seeded

Help for flooded gardens

Posted: 02/04/2014 at 21:19

Hi, Lizzie and all. Like  Rosie, mad busy at the mo. I have found that plants can live for wks in a carrier bag and be fine, so I wouldn't worry too much. Just put a couple of holes in and don't let them dry out.

Victoria, Thank you for the seeds, I got them on Mon, and am now sending the first box. 

Still collecting

Help for flooded gardens

Posted: 01/04/2014 at 03:51

Bumpity bump bump bump. Late night or early morning wake-up shake-up. Just speed read, will read beter tomorrow (or later!) Night all.

Time to get busy!

Posted: 01/04/2014 at 03:46

BB, you are just like me! However, having suffered, and still do, from SAD very badly, I always thought of my garden as a 'treat' to be done after the household chores, and so then suffered from 'garden withdrawal syndrome' too. So I was then too disinterested to sort the house, so I never got into the garden enough, blah blah and round in circles! But my landlady (a very good friend first) pointed out to me that as I mostly grow fruit and veg,organically, I am feeding my boys, helping the environment, saving food miles and helping my carbon footprint, and so my garden is actually work. So if my house (hers, really) is untidy 'cos I have young kids, but clean under the mess,  do the housework when the weather is bad, and the garden work when there is any chance to get out. I loved the thinking, felt less guilty, but the weather was awful. Then another friend's Dad was getting rid of his GH a nd she said, 'Dad, don't just knock it down, Ruth will have that!'. So, bless him, I hardly know him, he took it doen so carefully. Only brokr 3 panes, and it was at least 30 yrs old. I had twin wall poly that I had been given and was going to make a CF with, so that was sorted, I didn't even need to cut the sides, so that went on the coldest end, away from the door. Many of the bolts sheared as they were aluminium and had seized. So he wnt and bought new bolts for every eventuality, and all new glazing clips. And delivered it right to it's site! and would not even let me give him yhe money for what he had spent. he was so pleased to not have to wreck it.  And best of all, it is 8x6, and I happened to have 2 full sleepers and two halves. so, when I laid the sleepers ( with a little digging), the lengths with the small ones butting up to the longer ones, made a perfect base. (so I Haven't got the steps I wanted, but hey, a perfect base!) It amazing the weight a woman alone can move if she has a purpose. I dragged them 50 yds or more, up the big teraace that they were meant to step, which is 2' or more, all by myself. The only help I had was my eldest son holding the frame up while I fixed it together, them helping to lift it onto the base, and holding it while I screwed it down.

My neighbour gave advice over the fence, that I should seal every gap with putty, as he lost lots of glass his first yr (30 yrs ago!), due not to the wind hitting it, but from it getting inside and looking to escape so causing vibration. So I had the benefit of someone else's hindsight, and better technology in the way of clear, anti-mould silicone. Which not only sealed the gaps, but glued the glass to the frame and the glass to the glass! And reduced the effects of vibration by acting as a cushion.

Now I know how bad the floods were down south, and I always knew how windy it is here.  But it is amazing how attuned you can get attuned to every nuance of wind, once you have slaved over a structure that can fit in the 3  20 yrs of wanting, and broken promises Afterlittle piggy story. Once the frame went up a was secure and level (How lucky was I, for once in my life, it sat perfectly level on an uneven surface, and went right!), then it got windy when I wanted to put in the glass. That was the hard bit, and as the glass was old and brittle, I cracked a couple of corners  until I got the hang of the clips. Then the silicone goes 'off' so quick. But it was up and sparkly clean. It looked so nice, that at first  was loathe to spoil it by  actually growing any plants in it! I just sat in it for days, listening to the wind and rain that could not get in After 20 yrs of wanting, and broken promises, I did it myyyyyy, wayyyyy! for the first 3 wks, we had awful weather. such wind. I was waking in the night and running across the lawn in my wellies and nighty with a torc

Primroses and Polyanthus

Posted: 01/04/2014 at 02:29

I find that you don't really notice them dying back. My neighbour has many kinds, that need dividing, and I have promised for 2 yrs to do it, but when I go to do it, they have just kind of 'gone'! And I keep forgetting to label which is what! The labels are in my pocket this yr, ready. I'm having some of that! Some of the 'lollipops' are gorgeous. I only have millions of boring yellow, but she has all kinds of colours. And I've made a gap for them, now! Just leave them be if you like them. Have to say though, that other than the ones I sowed last yr for her pots, her display has not yet started, and should be well on by now. Hope they are not sulking cos I keep forgetting about them! Lots of really heathy looking plants, but no obvious buds yet. Now I'm worrying about them However, it looks like her huge magnolia might flower for the first time in 3 yrs, also one that has never given her a flower in 30! And her 3 white camellias that I have never seen flower are about to. She has a nice tidy garden that I love to do for her. It is like an extra to my own.  I sow, and grow and take cuttings for her, while she sits on her trolley thingy and tells me what to put where and what to take out. We have big rows, but such fun. She's 89 this r and much less mobile suddenly, so a bit narky as she can't do what she used to, so she vents her spleen on me, feeds my kids sweeties and the dog pate, and nags me to remember to sort the primroses and polyanthus. Just as if my Nanna was back with us! I will always remeber her for the primroses and her Pansies.  There must be many worse things to be remembered for!

Eradicating velvet leaf

Posted: 01/04/2014 at 02:06

Can you post a pic pls? What is velvet leaf? I have a weird thing growing that is kind of a cross between a fungus, fern and moss that I cant shift. It seems to love little disturbed, damp, shaded soil.

Talkback: New Zealand flatworms

Posted: 01/04/2014 at 02:03
I knew what it was when I found one killing an earthworm last yr. It was wrapped around ot like a boa constrictor around it's prey. I lightly cultivated my veg beds that have been under black polythene for a few wks. I found lots, and promptly chucked them into a marg tub of salt. Slugs and shails get chucked onto the bird table, and the birds flock for them when I call them. 'gourmet dinner, come n get it'. But when I put them on the table, (the unsalted ones!) the birds left them alone. I thought that salt may do it as they are so slimy like slugs. However, in my well composted beds I found only one tiny earthworm.She was rescued to the compost heap, but may not have been the best place for her. However, yesterday, I took it into my head to re-align the bricks that edge my FRONT lawn, which entailed removing chunks of turf from the edges. I did find LOADS of earhworms and not one nasty NZF. (but loads of leatherjackets, too). The worms were gently put away from me into the freshly cutivated border soil, and the leatherjackets went to the birds. It is strange that I have no worms in the beds that used to be full of them. I try not to dig at all, just add compost for the worms to sort, which they usually do over winter, but this yr, a warm one, the compodt just sat, unmoved, even after I covered it. But my front lawn was full of good girls and nit one nasty git! Just 100 yds of gravel apart! Have to say, my soil in the beds has a 'lifeless' feel to it this yr. I have not even seen any slug trails anywhere nr my pak choi, and they have been totally untouched this yr. Will the nasties eat slugs, if they have finished off the worms? The only real sign of any life was ants. And I can't kill them, since I saw firsthand the intricacy of their nest when I wanted to use my well rotted turf pile. How they scurried to save their eggs and pupae, some carrying several at a time. 2 hrs wasted watching them alone, then the boys got home from school to be thoroughly bored by my fascination and awed narrative! Also, they have never harmed my plants or kids, and they do produce a lovely fluffy light loam, from turf. Straight  through the fine sieve, no bother. could maybe be as useful as the wee red wrigglers? I'll ask Edd!Anyway, how can I have the buggers destroying my organic, well fed veg beds, but not in my front lawn? Borders rarely fed, lawn likewise? I am now even going to wash the lawnmower before I take it into the front. I would hate to spread them.Could the worms migrate to escape the wee sods? The borders and lawn were quite dry (very stony soil), and usually I see few worms there. This is fascinating but very frustrating, too.

Discussions started by gardenjeannie

Bit of Fun,/Brain-tease

My son's gardening space 
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Last Post: 12/04/2014 at 20:39

Companion planting for veg

Calendula - Which? 
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Angry as all Hell

Trying to answer PM's 
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Last Post: 05/03/2014 at 11:13


plant reviews in my profile 
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Last Post: 06/04/2014 at 13:57


a counselling service for compulsive seed buyers/savers! 
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Last Post: 09/03/2014 at 17:52

Over Wintering Fuchsias

'Hot water' treatment. 
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Last Post: 23/09/2013 at 23:31

Storing Onions and garlic

How do i make the old-fashioned ropes out of them? 
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Last Post: 15/01/2014 at 16:10
7 threads returned