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Latest posts by jo4eyes


Posted: 27/12/2014 at 15:04

Awoke to about 3-4ins here in NEDerbyshire.

Main road now clear, gritter out last evening & earlier today. Side roads only passible with extreeme care. Buses had problems & are now stopping at junction with main road!

An inherited elderly Lilac bush/tree totally uprooted! Well new planting chance.... but have got a clematis planted beneath canopy edge that'll now need a support! J.


Posted: 04/10/2014 at 16:31

Thx folks.

We moved in April! So have already been busy.... New place on a windy hillside with sun, awfully over worked, never improved, soil & even a soggy bottom! Bit of a change from dry soil & part shade. I did leave the soil in good nick though & miss that. Oh yes forgot- the contents of a compost bin came with us too!  

I'll be virtuous & pass on the cake! My version of WW is doing ok, so far, but am easily tempted! Am off out soon for a firework display & fish & chip supper. OH bakes a weekly cake too. He takes some into work for folks so I do get a 'treat' quite often.

Off now to get some soup before we set out, J.



Posted: 04/10/2014 at 16:03

Hi folks, have popped back in here after being AWOL for a good while.

We & 2 big coldframes, 150 assorted pots, contents of a shed & greenhouse etc etc moved house in April!

Just about coming to terms with a sunny & windy spot after a part shade garden for 30yrs. Soil is neglected here, but am working on that. Greenhouse base now finished & G/h arrives soon!

Rural net speed, or lack of it, driving me up the wall, so posting isnt always easy! Have recognised a few people around here, lots to catch up, J.

Gooseberry Bush Being Eaten Alive

Posted: 28/05/2014 at 17:11

Yes sawfly!

You can pick them off by hand & squish them in the meantime, if you feel like it..... but a rotten job & you never get them all IME, sorry.

You can spray the bush, if you dont object to doing that, but again vigilance all season is needed.

BTW if there's any Solomons' Seal around check that for the same thing! J.

Shady blooms from seed - Help!

Posted: 13/02/2014 at 19:19

Hi Waterfall,

The plants mentioned by others are all good & most will cope in pots, so some colour is possible.

A climber I love & have growing on a N facing fence, beneath NDN's overhanging Leylands (!!), so not much sun, is Hydrangea Peteolaris. I've also got it on a N facing garage wall that gets afternoon sun, so that 1 does better, but is an older plant anyway.It's a shrub that's self clinging, which if you gave it a good start, you could plant direct into a 'pocket'. You'd need to guide it up there & secure it to start with, & it can be slow to establish. Well worth the wait though IME. The white flowers smell wonderful & even in winter the bark is a good colour.

With any climber going up the fence do make sure that the panels are in good condition though as future fence maintenance will be compromised.

You could also use it as a host for climbers in pots in front of it, space permitting.... J.

Shady blooms from seed - Help!

Posted: 11/02/2014 at 14:31

Is the tree in your garden or a neighbours'?

If neighbours then unfortunately no guarentee it will be felled. If yours then if done asap you will have some time to deal with the soil conditions you will be left with. The soil beneath/around will be impoverished so will need TLC to improve things before you can safely plant things.

To do that properly takes time & effort, so had you thought about using large pots/planters for annual flower seeds, summer bulbs etc.? That way you'll get some colour this year.

Gardening in shade is challenging but there are lots of plants that will provide colour, providing you do 1.preparation of ground & 2. reasearch, ask on here etc, about suitable plants, J.

verbena bonariensis help

Posted: 14/01/2014 at 17:03

Well I'd certainly secure the fence panels first. Usually a small block of wood can be hammered in between the panel & concrete post to fix the 'wobble'.I'd do that asap so you 1. dont lose a fence panel in any more gales & 2. are ready for coldframe arrival. Trying to sort it once damage is done wont be ideal!

Oh & if the panels need restaining/painting do it before you site the coldframe next to fence.

Try some vine eyes fixed to the panel, or even concrete post if poss- wear safety goggles if drilling into concrete .Then strong garden wire looped through those & around the coldframe frame/supports should do the trick. BTW I'd also check who owns the fence first......

If it's not yours then just use very strong twine to loop through the wooden panels, if they're up to it, & the CF frame as before. J.

verbena bonariensis help

Posted: 14/01/2014 at 15:30

It'll be better sited where there is some shade, unless you can be absolutely sure that you can well ventilate it every sunny day. No offence, but all of us have 'frazzled' things at some time! 

BTW as it's a tall one do make absolutely sure that it's well attached to the wall if possible. The tall ones can blow over! J.

verbena bonariensis help

Posted: 14/01/2014 at 15:06
Magical Meerkat wrote (see)


I bought this Verbena Bonariensis last year and it was great and flowered right into November/Dec. I went for a wander today and I see it is started to shoot. Should I have pruned it to the ground? or do you leave them to get on with themselves?

Sorry for the terribly blurry photo, I took it with me phone.

Thanks MM


As it's still relatively mild then it probably will still keep growing. So leave it for now. Once the weather does properly warm up then there may be some dead/dying bits which you can snip off. You may also spot self-sown 'babies' nearby later in Spring. Those can be carefully lifted & potted up/planted e/w.

If it produces new side shoots you can take those off as cuttings, which I try & do every yr. The normal time for taking cuttings is late summer/autumn for me, but they need overwintering in a coldframe/inside which you may not have.

Mine are still standing proud out there- shall investigate them around March, J.

Cornus alba Sibirica in Containers

Posted: 07/01/2014 at 16:21

A large pot would be best. Also stand it on a 'saucer' as Cornus like moisture, J.

Discussions started by jo4eyes

Care & maintenance of elderly Bramley apple trees.

Replies: 2    Views: 2073
Last Post: 18/02/2013 at 20:32

Suggestions for planting in a sunny, boggy site.

Replies: 5    Views: 1286
Last Post: 18/02/2013 at 22:38
2 threads returned