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Latest posts by hypercharleyfarley

Gardeners World 2014 BBC2

Posted: 08/03/2014 at 19:06

I agree with Edd!  I think the problem with lots of TV programmes these days is that the people who produce/organise them aren't in any way personally involved with the subject they deal with.  This is bound to result in the sort of arty-farty shots which we see in lots of programmes, where what we really want to see are clear and steady close-up shots of what the presenter is actually doing.  It's so easy to blame whoever "fronts" these programmes - they probably have no real  "say" in what is eventually transmitted. 

 A few years ago I was present when one of those "property programmes" was being made, and it was interesting to see what finally ended up on my TV screen!  At least one of the shots was repeated four times...........  I'm sure the car involved didn't actually go down that particular bit of lane as often as that!

Carrots, Parsnips - Manure?

Posted: 07/03/2014 at 11:15

Hello Mark - the problem with odd-shaped/forked carrots is that you end up with a poorer yield (i.e. what ends up on your plate) because you end up peeling a whole lot more off each individual carrot.  OK if you just scrub them & cook them, but most people don't do that.  I sometimes wonder whether anybody's actually weighed, say, a potato, before & after peeling, just to see how much of it they throw away!

Ask Alan

Posted: 07/03/2014 at 11:08

I'd like to ask Alan what particular aspect of gardening gives him the most satisfaction/enjoyment, and is there anything he dislikes doing (for instance, I hate mowing grass but love doing all the other stuff) 


Posted: 07/03/2014 at 11:03

It's nothing to do with birds' nests.  Unfortunately it's a virus of some sort which has appeared in the UK in the past few years and seems now to have spread everywhere.  I've noticed that some varieties of conifer hedging seem to be more affected than others, but there's no really effective way of preventing it or dealing with its presence, so far as I know 

After the nesting season, you might be able to deal with the brown/dead patches by removing them and tying the remaining branches across the resulting gap.  That's what I'm going to try!

What's digging up lawn?

Posted: 05/03/2014 at 20:07

The holes in my lawn look very like that & they are rabbit latrines, so maybe that's what's your problem too, if you have wild rabbits nearby.  Sometimes I find rabbit droppings in & beside the holes, so maybe you will too if you take a really close look.  I've had badgers dig up the lawn in the past, but the mess they make is different in that they rip the turf up (looking for chafer grubs etc) rather than just making holes.

p.s. today I heard of a good way to stop badgers digging the lawn.  Apparently they don't do it if you've scattered some of that granular lawn fertiliser around.  I won't need to try this out, as my garden is now more-or-less badger-proof, but the person who gave me the advice has in fact tried it, and said it really does work.

Where have the birds gone!!!

Posted: 28/02/2014 at 18:59

Hardly any sparrows here - they obviously prefer your garden, Sue!

There are lots and lots of blue tits, coal tits & great tits - the long-tailed tits always seem to come later in the day than the others.  Wonder why?  There's a robin, a blackbird, a song thrush, a couple of jays sometimes, and greenfinches occasionally, tho' no chaffinch.  Haven't seen a wren for a while - which is odd - and over in the field (and sometimes on the post & rail fence)  there are a couple of magpies and several crows.   Other visitors include the odd wood pigeon or two, but haven't seen a collared dove this year yet.  Yesterday there were two buzzards overhead, and a few gulls in the far field.  Heard a woodpecker in the wood earlier on today.  Used to see fieldfares and redwings together in the field, but not this winter. Starlings are a bit of a rarity round here now, as are plovers - used to see lots & lots of both.  A cock pheasant landed on the lawn last week!

Wisteria and dogs - poisonous?

Posted: 14/02/2014 at 19:46

Hello Rosie!  love the photo - thanks for sharing.



Hedging and Horses

Posted: 14/02/2014 at 19:41

sorry - a few typos in the above reply.  I haven't yet discovered a way of editing after posting.   Anyone know if that's possible?



Hedging and Horses

Posted: 14/02/2014 at 19:35

I think you probably need to establish who's responsible for the boundary fence in question.  If you have any paperwork relating to your property, the boundary ownership/responsibility might be shown like this:



which means  that whoever owns the land above the line is the "owner" of the boundary.  If the "T" were upside down and below the line, the owner of the land below the line would be responsible.  In other words, whoever owns the land on which the "T" lies is responsible for the associated boundary.

Sometimes things get a bit complicated.  For example,  it's often the case that in a road with a row/line of properties, each property-owner is responsible for two of the rear boundaries.  One way of explaining this is that if the rear garden is a simple rectangular shape, the owner would be responsible for two of the boundaries e.g. left-hand side and rear (imagine "L" upside down).  It's best not to to assume ownership of a boundary because sometimes "boundary" can equare to "minefield".

Of course things aren't always clear-cut!  However, what you can do (if you've got enough room) is create another fence inside the existing boundary, and attach some horse-deterrent electric fence-type gadget.  In this case you'd need something like a car battery in a waterproof container, if it's too far away to connect to the mains electricity supply.  I think I mentioned in my earlier post that it's probably best to go and get some ideas/advice from a local agricultural supplier/merchant.  A bit of googling beforehand will probably help too!

Wisteria and dogs - poisonous?

Posted: 12/02/2014 at 16:53

Have two wisterias and two dogs!


They aren't at the "chew-everything" stage so any pods which fall on to the ground aren't a problem for me.  They are  poisonous (the pods, that is!) so you need to make sure that there aren't any lying around where your puppy can get to them.  It really will be worth making the efffrt to get each and every single one of them - otherwise poorly & possibly dead puppy + vet's bills as a result.

I'd suggest you go to your local pet food place and get a lot of things which the puppy will  be able to chew safely - and you can offer one of these as a "swap" if your puppy does find (and chew) anything he shouldn't.  Is this your first dog?  if not, I'm probably telling you something you already know - but don't hesitate to ask about things if you think anyone here might be able to help.



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