Jim Macd

Latest posts by Jim Macd

Himalayan Balsam

Posted: 30/04/2014 at 14:59
Bee witched wrote (see)

Can I just put a plea in for Himalayan Balsam?

This is a superb honey bee plant .... a great late summer nectar source.

I live on a river and the bees actively seek it out .... I can tell when they've been to the balsam as they all come back to the hive covered in white pollen like little white ghosts!

Makes great honey too ... so all in all a smashing plant in my opinion!


To quote ighton NO!.


There are loads of plants that are native and provide nectar and pollen, unfortunately the native ones which support a great deal more than bees are being driven out of existence by it. The bees survived in  Britain for thousands of years without Himalayan Balsam but I'm not sure if you'll be able to say the same thing for all the wildlife that depends on out native flora. It's thinking only of our own needs that got us into this mess. My opinion doesn't matter one jot, only facts and common sense, thankfully.

Apple tree against a wall

Posted: 30/04/2014 at 14:53

apple tree

Posted: 30/04/2014 at 11:09

What variety is it also. I've got trees that finished flowering and ones that are still at green bud stage.


Posted: 30/04/2014 at 11:07

Hope you've got room in your freezer! Mine aren't established enough yet to take much. And only Tesco seem to be stocking it near me.

Apple tree against a wall

Posted: 30/04/2014 at 11:03

Sorry SN I said your tree probably wasn't on m26 I was confusing m26 with m25, M26 is between M9 and MM106 so ideal for pots and would be okay for an espalier.

Chelsea Chop

Posted: 29/04/2014 at 19:00

Yes, the Chelsea Chop is used to both delay flower or spread it if you chop some more than others and to keep the plant shorter at flowering thus preventing lanky plants. 

cordon soft fruits.

Posted: 29/04/2014 at 12:57

I agree wtih John, I wouldn't see the point. Sounds like a lot of work for little return.

Himalayan Balsam

Posted: 29/04/2014 at 11:13

Yes, gardeners and plant hunters have a lot to answer for!!! Not to mention people who release cute, fury creatures that eat everything in sight and dirve out our natives.

Chelsea Chop

Posted: 29/04/2014 at 11:06

If you chop too early you're defeating the object of the chop. It won't do your plant any harm but it might not have the desired benefit if the plant just grows back to full height.

Pruning plum tree

Posted: 29/04/2014 at 10:52

I wouldn't prune it at all, you're not growing for an team of pickers, what does it matter where the branches are, and why would you want a ladder to have to pick your fruit? I would be a bit bothered by the lean though, with a heavy crop all at the top of the tree you'll end up with the tree on the ground if you don't stake it or at least but it some ropes. I don't like tree stakes, they're for council estates to stop yobs snapping off your tree before it's grown thick enough to hang a 14 year old off.

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