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Latest posts by hypercharleyfarley

May In Your Garden

Posted: 16/05/2012 at 09:48

Rabbits reaching plague proportions now.  Maybe they'll eat some of the grass I couldn't cut the other day when the mower developed an oil leak + nasty noise. I don't mind them eating the grass - but it's the other stuff they do that makes me so mad.  Glad to hear that I'm not the only one who's late with the runner beans...........


Posted: 16/05/2012 at 09:44

Seven baby rabbits in the garden this morning.............  and they say that for every one you can actually see, there's another three out there too. 

faded wisteria

Posted: 15/05/2012 at 12:44

Hi - have no idea why - mine are not yet fully in flower but look the same as they always do at this stage.  They are on a south-facing front wall so probably get the best of whatever sunshine we do get - tho' not much of that lately. Is yours in a shady place?

What's the weather like in your area?

Posted: 15/05/2012 at 12:29

Hi Frank - it's rained more or less non-stop since they cut for sileage!  Don't know whether they'll bale it or not - I exect they will as the farmer who rents the field from me has now given up milking & won't need the winter keep for the dairy cows.  Hasn't sown any forage maize this year either.  Couldn't compete any more with the "major players" in the dairy industry ref milk prices, so is raising heifers and selling them on close to calving. Much of the land is now given over to potatoes - apparently destined already for frozen chips & someone-or-other's "crisps" factory.  I was astonished to see 10 tractors working at once in one of the fields the other day. Its about 40 acres I guess - & had been ploughed a couple of weeks ago.  I reckon it would have gone from deep ploughed to potato planting completed in a less than a day.  Phew!

What's the weather like in your area?

Posted: 14/05/2012 at 18:24

Better sunshine today than we've had for ages    -    managed to cut some of the grass but only did about half before I had to stop, as the mower started making an odd noise - think it's developed an oil leak.  Oh well.  Luckily I'd left the mossy areas of the lawn til last, and of course it hasn't been done now.............  

Farmer's contractors have just finished cutting the field at the back for sileage - two ginormous tractors each cutting three swathes at once, at great speed.  Never seen them like that before.  However, no sooner had they finished - and it only seemed to take about 20 mins to do approx 5 acres - the sky turned black-ish and it's started to thunder - some raindrops too.  Typical.

Just what is it about cutting grass that makes the rain start? 


Posted: 12/05/2012 at 22:04

I wish I could agree with you ref the dog pee!  If that were the case, the three baby rabbits I could see this afternoon might have chosen to stay in the field on the other side of the garden fence  -  despite the various "efforts" of my two whippets to keep them away.   As a previous poster has said, there seems to be nothing you can do to keep them out apart from wire netting fixed both above and below ground all round the garden boundaries. This, for me, is not an option not only because of the costs involved but also the various levels twixt garden and field area beyond.

Over the years I have had to learn to live with the problems which result from living on the edge of rabbit-ridden fields.  The only rabbit-proof part of my garden is a small raised bed which does have chicken wire to protect it - the rest of it has bolt holes & rabbit latrines in the lawned areas, as well as several burrows in the shrubbery areas.  I have found that even those plants which are suposed not to be favourite rabbit food will in fact be eaten - they seem to find any newly-planted stuff almost irresistible.  They will even stand on their hind legs to nibble away at stuff in fairly tall terracotta pots. Some chaps come ferretting from September to March - and this helps quite a bit.  During the last foot & mouth outbreak they weren't allowed access on to the land  - and when they did start ferretting again they caught 406 rabbits, over six visits, within 200 yards of my house.

Until two years ago I had semi-feral cats which certainly kept the front garden totally rabbit-free.   I never ever saw the cats in the fenced part of the garden where the dogs are free to run round - whippets seem to be "hard-wired" to chase cats and small furry things, so they had to be kept separate from the moggies' area. Since the last of the cats died, the rabbits have taken up residence in the front garden too.

So, if you don't want to resort to having to shoot the rabbits and don't want to have a dog - which wouldn't be free to roam in the way that cats can - I suggest a semi-feral cat or two might be one solution to the problem for you.  If anyone else can come up with an utterly foolproof rabbit deterrent, I'd simply love to know what that is!

Petrol lawn mower

Posted: 23/04/2012 at 12:48

Hello again G'1locks - I've not measured the edges I'd want to deal with, but it could well amount to 80m - no straight lines, so actually getting the work done could be a bit of a problem in itself.  Maybe I need to get some quotes................. but glad to hear you think it would work - IF I'm prepared to shell out the money!

Petrol lawn mower

Posted: 22/04/2012 at 21:10

Hi Gold1locks - I have exactly the same problem ref lawn edges & still miss the old Atco!  I'm considering putting in some paviours as an edging, to take the mower wheels.  D'you think it would work?  I don't want a contrast (colour-wise) and have seen some edging paviours which would look OK, in that the colour more or less matches the soil.   What do you think?     Ma.

What is this weed?

Posted: 19/04/2012 at 10:51

Hi- sounds a bit like a cranesbill to me - I think there's one called "cut-leaved" or something like that.  Frank's way of dealing with unwanted weeds is how to do it!

Petrol lawn mower

Posted: 16/04/2012 at 20:54

My Atco with a 3.5hp engine + roller lasted for 27 years.  Unfortunately the two mowers I've had since (i.e. in the last 4 years) have been rubbish by comparison.  Current one is a Hayter - similar engine size, plastic deck, no roller, electric start with the option of pull-start - but, that bit won't work for me.  Easier to fill the fuel tank than the other machines though, and it has a "mulch" setting.  It's supposed to be "semi-self-propelled" (whatever that means!) and I find it really quite hard work on the bumpy & uneven areas of my garden,  OK on the good bits though. The so-called lawn is definitely somewhat the worse for not having a relatively heavy mower with a roller, which coped well with molehill remains/subsiding mole & vole tunnels/rabbit latrines etc.

The current Hayter has a couple of features which I really don't like:-  it's almost impossible to connect the charger unit to the machine and just as difficult (when you've finally succeeded) to disconnect it.  The other thing is that it's really quite awkward to remove & replace the grassbox.

I didn't try the machine myself before I bought it - just had a demo.- so I suggest you try to have a go yourself with whatever mower you're considering and that might help with your decision.

btw my nickname is the one I used on the Beeb - HCF was one of my whippets (now only recently deceased) and I'm in fact a granny, who's often known as "Ma". 

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