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Green Magpie


Latest posts by Green Magpie

Climbing french beans

Posted: 16/08/2014 at 21:46

I grow my climbing beans on two wigwams several feet apart, with a horizontal cane joining the two wigwams at the top. When the beans reach the top, I get them to twine across this cane, which keeps them within reach.

Never heard of compact courgettes - can anyone recommend a variety?

Leaking squash, help!

Posted: 16/08/2014 at 21:20

My squashes got third prize (out of 5 entrants!) in the  "other vegetables" category. I also got a first for my carrots and courgettes, so I'm happy.

It's only a little village show, but I enjoy entering my produce and admiring the other entries.

 

Leaking squash, help!

Posted: 15/08/2014 at 20:13

Panic over! After  a few hours they stopped weeping and dried off. I suppose it would have shown they were fresh but  I' m glad they're OK - squashes are such watery creatures, I was wondering if they were going to relieve themselves of too much water and end up as shrivelled husks. 

 

Leaking squash, help!

Posted: 15/08/2014 at 13:15

A strange query but an urgent one for me: how can I stop the cut ends of the stems on my little squashes from weeping? I have three pretty little "Hooligan" squashes, like mini-pumpkins, and I cut them this morning as I want to enter them in the village show tomorrow. They're supposed to be cut with a bit of stem if they are to be stored, and they look attractive like this, but a few hours after cutting, they're still oozing a watery liquid from the cut end of the stumpy stem. It gathers in the concave top of the fruit and looks messy. Any idea how I can get this to stop, or seal the stump somehow?

Alcofrolic fruits for Christmas

Posted: 11/08/2014 at 21:58

Blackcurrant vodka is a good one, a home-made cassis liqueur. You can drink it neat or use it to make kir - in fact this can be a way of making your less palatable home-made white wines drinkable!

 

Codling Moths

Posted: 09/08/2014 at 18:35

This is no help to you,  but it's the same here. Even one tree that is normally pest-free is riddled with the things. Many of our damaged apples are rotting on the tree or being attacked by wasps or dropping off before they're ripe. If we tackle them with a knife, we might get half of each apple if we're lucky, but we can't store them for more than a few days as they soon rot. Most of our crop will end up on the compost heap.

Moths and lavender

Posted: 08/08/2014 at 12:14

Someone remarked in another post that it seems to be a bad year for moths of all sorts (well, a good year if you happen to be a moth). We have problems with lawn moths, tomato moths and leek moths, and possible plum moths too.

I was wondering ...I know that house moths (clothes moths) are deterred by the scent of lavender. Does anyone know whether lavender can be used to deter any garden moths? Companion planting won't work for vegetables that get rotated, but I recently cut back a couple of big lavender bushes and tried scattering some clippings around the tomatoes and the leeks.

Is this likely to help at all, do you think? And if anyone has any tips on dealing with lawn moths, I'd be very grateful!

 

 

Drama in the compost heap

Posted: 03/08/2014 at 22:51

Just something to share with you: we have a big compost heap, one section of which is maturing under a layer of old carpet. In warm weather we get slow worms basking under the carpet, and occasionally a grass snake. Then one day I saw a fat frog, about two inches long, sitting near the slow worms. The next time we looked, there was a small grass snake too, with the frog's head in its mouth! The frog was wriggling, and as we watched it gave a big kick and freed itself. We haven't seen either the frog or the snake since, but the slow worms are still there.

Do grass snakes eat slow worms, I wonder?

spuds just fall apart when boiled

Posted: 31/07/2014 at 22:35

Mine are Charlotte and can be inclined to fall apart. A great way to cook them is in foil parcels in the oven:

Put the washed potatoes (chop up larger ones) in a bowl with a little olive oil, salt, garlic and rosemary. Mix well, then wrap portions loosely in foil parcels. Bake for 45 mins to an hour in a fairly hot oven. This method keeps the skins intact and enhances the flavour of the potatoes.

Please help ID this flower...

Posted: 29/07/2014 at 14:07

Yes I agree. Definitely not speedwell, and almost certainly Linaria Purpurea (toadflax). As far as I know it's an annual that self-seeds.

Discussions started by Green Magpie

Leaking squash, help!

Replies: 12    Views: 293
Last Post: 19/08/2014 at 08:57

Moths and lavender

Replies: 0    Views: 111
Last Post: 08/08/2014 at 12:14

Drama in the compost heap

Replies: 5    Views: 245
Last Post: 04/08/2014 at 21:18

Tomato thriving on neglect!

Replies: 5    Views: 306
Last Post: 20/06/2014 at 10:54

Secateurs open?

Replies: 5    Views: 474
Last Post: 06/05/2014 at 21:27

Lobelia for wedding at end of May

Replies: 6    Views: 351
Last Post: 04/06/2014 at 22:39

Flatworms?

Replies: 8    Views: 702
Last Post: 03/02/2014 at 07:50

Runners on new strawberry plants

Replies: 6    Views: 586
Last Post: 29/09/2013 at 08:39

Nettles for butterflies

 
Replies: 10    Views: 1503
Last Post: 22/07/2013 at 14:25

What not to grow

Replies: 25    Views: 1361
Last Post: 31/07/2014 at 18:08

Photinia Red Robin pruning?

Replies: 25    Views: 14849
Last Post: 06/06/2014 at 22:33

Searching the site?

Replies: 17    Views: 1887
Last Post: 04/02/2014 at 15:30
12 threads returned