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Latest posts by Ginglygangly

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What are your favourite native flowers?

Posted: 29/11/2014 at 06:59

poppies in cornfields and the moon daisies that seem to thrive next to busy roads

Which tree for my garden?

Posted: 27/11/2014 at 18:24

I have what I *think* is a katsura in my garden. It is beautiful - lovely weeping habit but with branches way above head height. Small round leaves, which go a gorgeous buttery orange in Autumn (September, usually) and make fab leaf mould (I am slightly obsessed with leaf mould). It was in the garden when I moved in 15 years ago, and I am still trying to make a positive ID! However, I am in London - I believe they don't thrive well in very cold, exposed sites. If I had to replace it, I would probably go for a Liquidamber - Rowans are pretty but a bit too small for me and they are being planted all over London. I am sorry you lost your honey locust, there are a few in neighbouring gardens and they are absolutely beautiful trees. If you can establish why the old one died and ensure the problem is fixed, I would replace like for like!


Posted: 27/11/2014 at 18:09

Enthused, they could be any one of the "stinkhorn" mushrooms. Google and you will see they are also called Phallacae - some of the images are um... interesting! Not a fungi expert but like other posters, I believe that these are amazing organisms and - in the main - harmless to us and our plants. Fungi perform functions in the garden that are only just beginning to be understood. I delight in them as a sign of a healthy ecosystem. I was delighted to see lots of "puffballs" colonising my front garden, as until five years ago, it was pretty much covered in concrete

Identify house plant

Posted: 23/11/2014 at 20:42

I think I have one of these - have never flowered. They are also known as Urn plants. Mine produced several offshoots which I potted up and gave to friends - they are fondly known as "Little Urns"

Giant Echium (echium pininana)

Posted: 21/11/2014 at 19:41

I'm growing echium from seed. If they germinate before midsummer, they should flower two years later, so yours should be getting ready to flower next year. Protect them from frost over winter.

winter gardening

Posted: 16/11/2014 at 20:17

for your baskets, why not have some variegated ivy (choose one of the smaller leaved varieties). It would tumble very prettily over the edges. I would suggest you think about a limited colour palette - in winter, white  and  silver come into their own - and think about foliage more than flowers to your budget go further. For flowers, the hellebores others have mentioned would be lovely, also pansies and cyclamen. Also look out for snowdrops, although you will probably have to wait to buy them in flower now.

Weed problem

Posted: 13/11/2014 at 17:11

vigilance and persistence is all I can suggest I'm afraid! this is one of "my weeds" as I think of them - the ones that pop up everywhere in your garden when your back is turned. In my garden, bittercress are always trying to sneak in, and the annoying thing is that they are quite small when they flower and set seed and this seems to be at any time of year. Very easy to miss, especially in the winter when we all spend less time in the garden. I also have to keep on top of Herb Robert, chickweed, cleavers and sycamore seedlings. I just try to think of them as green manure and be grateful (touch wood) that I haven't got some of the more pernicious, deep rooted ones. If you have a patch where they are winning the battle and little else grows, except maybe bulbs, might be worth covering the ground with newspaper and a good layer of mulch. This will smother them and prevent their seeds generating and of course will all rot down over winter.

To late to plant foxgloves?

Posted: 12/11/2014 at 20:01

I've planted mine out - purely because the squirrels kept investigating the pots they were in and I thought they had better take their chances in the ground where the squirrels leave them alone. I sowed my foxgloves in spring and they are still pretty tiny - would have preferred to keep them protected till spring but oh well! I'll be surprised if they flower next summer, but all depends on how hard winter  is I guess. Certainly getting watered in nicely with all this rain!

Weed or flower?

Posted: 11/11/2014 at 17:07

those are lovely and you can get new plants by dividing them - just dig them up and separate them into smaller clumps. They aren't macorhizzum - not sure what variety they are. They might prefer a bit more sun and it's likely to be shady under your apple tree. Geranium Macrorhizzum will grow just about anywhere but is particularly useful in shade where many plants struggle and as others have said, is really easy to manage.

"Bug. Hotel"

Posted: 30/10/2014 at 18:21

I'm very impressed. Now I really want to build a deluxe bug residence. For the moment the bugs have to make do with a ramshackle collection of twigs, fatsia leaves and other detritus I have piled up in a quiet corner. Less bug hotel, more bug campsite perhaps? On the street corner opposite is an unofficial bulky waste collection site, where people dump stuff and the (wonderful) Hackney waste services pick it up daily. I am sure I will eventully "rescue" something to covert into a bug hotel.

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