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hypercharleyfarley


Latest posts by hypercharleyfarley

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:

_____________________T_____________________________

 

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.

 

 

Flood damage

Posted: 11/02/2014 at 18:01

I reckon it'll take a very long time for things to get back to what was "normal" where the land has been submerged for as long as it has been this time round.  Obviously we can see for ourselves those creatures which are mobile and probably will have survived - rodents, birds and so on - but what won't have survived are the insect larvae & worms etc.,and things we can't see,  as well as those creatures which hibernate - someone else "upthread" mentioned hedgehogs, I think. 

Another problem - which I don't think people  have mentioned - is the fact that there willl undoubtedly be pollution due to sewage systems ceasing to function properly, and the possibillity that there may well be pollution from oil fuel  domestic heating systems and underground fuel storage tanks.  Those rural areas which have suffered badly are probably those which don't have mains services other than electicity and water - and even the water systems may well be badly affected.

The water table overall is so high now that large trees are more likely than ever to be blown over in high winds - their roots being unable to hold due to the soft ground.   This is something we've seen round here, even though we're not at risk from flooding and the soil is relatively light/sandy.

There's every chance that all of us will find our buildings insurance premiums rising too - the insurance companies will get their money back somehow, just as they have done by increasing motor insurance costs as a result of  the rising number of claims for whiplash injuries...........  Property prices will fall in those areas which have been affected by the floods, and some people will undoubtedly find themselves in what's called a "negative equity" situation now - even if they could  find a buyer if and when they have to sell their home. 

It seems to me that there won't be many creatures or businesses which won't suffer long-term from the affects of the floods - maybe the only ones who'll do well are people who have a carpet shop!

 

Hedging and Horses

Posted: 08/02/2014 at 13:21

I'm a bit puzzled as to what is currrently in place to stop animals getting into your garden from the field beyond.  I presume there must be some sort of boundary fence or other - perhaps you could describe it for us.

Bored horses will often chew at anything they can reach, so it's best to plant things well away from the boundary itself.  If there's some sort of post & rail fencing there are a few things you can do to stop horses reaching over.  Two methods which work really well involve the use of an adaptation of normal & commonly-used electric stock fencing (which can be battery operated) and which horses soon learn to steer clear of.  Because of this there can even be times when you don't need to have the electricity supply connected.

One of these adaptations enables you to put the electric tape along the top of the fencing, and another enables you to fix the tape about 18" away from the fence itself (on the field side) by means of brackets which look a bit like those you'd use for hanging baskets on a house wall.  I guess if you look at a few websites you'll see what I mean.  Even better if you can visit a local agricultural merchant/supplier and they'd be able to show you how it all works.

Have you thought of having a word about this with whoever owns the land and/or the horses?  perhaps they'd be willing to help either financially or in a practical way, and once the fencing was sorted out you'd be able to plant whatever you wanted.

Big garden bird watch

Posted: 25/01/2014 at 20:00

Hi Higgy - thanks for the pics - I couldn't be sure but thought "dunnocks" in that they are what I often see here.  I have several bird books + binocs handy in the kitchen but find some species hard to differentiate when I only catch a glimpse!  I have quite a few bird feeders hanging from various trees/shrubs in the garden, and as it's in open countryside there are all sorts of things visiting but not on a regular basis.  For instance, I've not seen a nuthatch this winter, nor any woodpeckers, which I usually do.  There are peregrines nesting a mile or two away, and I often see/hear buzzards overhead when the crows attack them.  Kestrel missing this year.  It was only when the pheasant "shouted" today that I noticed he was there!  Don't think I've ever seen a bunting here, and the bullfinches I used to see seem to have disappeared these past few years, as have the starlings, thrushes etc.  Haven't seen an owl for several years - there used to be little owls + tawnies nearby.

Things have changed such a lot since I first began to notice birds (as a little child & used to have those I-spy booklets) and I can't remember when I last saw a plover or heard a skylark round here.  Sad, isn't it........

Big garden bird watch

Posted: 25/01/2014 at 19:17

Haven't submitted a count, because I've not been counting consistently!  However, today these have been here in the garden:

at least twelve blue tits

four long-tailed tits

three coal tits

four great tits

one jay

one cock pheasant

two magpies

one crow

one robin

one male blackbird

two "sbbs" - couldn't identify because they were half hidden in the shrubs (sbb = small brown bird)

a pair of chaffinches

one greenfinch

one wren

 

I've not been at home all day, so there  must have been other visitors too - the jay and the cock pheasant aren't "regulars"!

The most unusual sighting here - only once in 20 years - was a red-footed falcon a few weeks ago.  If only it had been here today!

 

Covering an Unsightly Fence

Posted: 16/01/2014 at 16:25

I think you need to bear in mind that at some time or other the fence will have to be painted or coated with some preservative or other - and this could affect (or even kill off) things you plant very close to it.  With that in mind, perhaps you'd be able to leave some space between the fence and any shrubs you decide to plant.  If, for instance,  you were to make two semi-circular beds - with the fence at the back of each one - it would mean you could leave enough room to get to the fence itself when you needed to.  

  If there were - say -  a couple of fence panels between the two beds, you could attach some wooden trellis to the panels/posts to enable you to plant some climbers.   The trellis could be removed to enable the fence to be painted - it could be supported temporarily whilst any painting took place and the climbing plants left in situ  if they'd been planted some little distance away from the fence itself in the first place.

 

Bird feeders

Posted: 04/01/2014 at 17:19

I don't think it matters if you use pure vegetable oils such as peanut, sunflower, rapeseed etc - after all, birds eat sunflower seeds & peanuts!

Bird feeders

Posted: 03/01/2014 at 21:33

I think you could use it so long as it's mixed with other drier ingredients.  If you Google something like "home-made wild bird food" I bet you'll find some recipes which would include peanut butter.

It's not too expensive to make bird food at home & use up left-overs such as stale bread, crackers etc which you can mix with some vegetable oil or melted suet.  It helps to have some sort of liquidizer to grind any large seeds or peanuts, and if you use suet the resulting feed will set hard so you can make it in a mould or something which you can then hang up for the birds to perch on.

If you are going to use whole seeds of any sort, it's best to microwave them for a few moments before using them in any mixture - that way any which fall on the ground won't germinate & grow into anything you might not want to have in the garden!

Repotting new Christmas tree

Posted: 30/11/2013 at 18:26

The tree sounds lovely!  However, it wouldn't be a good idea to change too quickly from the sort of temperatures you'll have indoors to the outdoor mid-winter cold.  If you're going to add decorations or fairy lights, the idea of "misting" could cause you a bit of shock/problem!  One thing you might be able to do is to keep it somewhere relatively cool in the house - i.e. certainly as far away from a radiator or open fire as you can.  Maybe only bring it into the living room (?warmest place in the house) only when you really feel you want to.  Otherwise it'll be happier somewhere cooler, and you'll maximise its chances of survival.

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