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Latest posts by Joe_the_Gardener

Talkback: Orange ladybirds

Posted: 23/01/2013 at 10:16

I wrote my post without reading Kate's bloggy thingy, so no wonder it seemed a bit misdirected. Sorry folks - technology confuses me!

Talkback: Orange ladybirds

Posted: 20/01/2013 at 20:48


Could be.................the Orange Ladybird, Halyzia 16-guttata, which is fairly widely distributed in the south of Britain. It breeds on Sycamore, Dogwood and a range of other deciduous trees and, interestingly in view of your sighting, hibernates in, among other things, the foliage of Scots Pine.

The colouring and markings of some of the ladybirds is quite variable among individuals of the same species and according to age; some that are supposed to have spots don't, and the pattern variations can be confusing. The Orange Ladybird has white spots and apparently is generally less prone to colour variants than most, but I'm not any sort of an expert to be able to say whether a ladybird was actually a 'wrong-coloured' 10-spot, rather than an orange. It could be this summer's special subject!


small bird watch

Posted: 20/01/2013 at 17:23

They're pretty much the same size as Magpies, but without the long tail. I've just been watching three of them feeding on the little crab apples on next door's tree - like a Japanese painting.

Pleached hedge

Posted: 20/01/2013 at 16:44

Rick, how long is your hedge?

small bird watch

Posted: 20/01/2013 at 16:42

Sounds like you might have seen a Jay, hollie hock. Have a look on the RSPB's website - not quite as you describe, but not many other options.

Cowslip, don't worry about the bird count; the methodology adopted by the scientists at the RSPB allows for all sorts of variables, and they only draw conclusions that are appropriate to the data they collect.

down at thefrozen pond

Posted: 19/01/2013 at 16:38

I suppose the truth is that frogs and toads have survived long periods of snow and ice for millions of years.

squirrel shot for coming to the table.

Posted: 18/01/2013 at 17:35

Yes, Charley, the offence was causing suffering to an animal. Silly man!

Ground elder

Posted: 18/01/2013 at 17:25

I would leave it until there is good leaf growth - about April. Good hunting, lass!

Ground elder

Posted: 18/01/2013 at 11:05


Agree entirely with Bob and Dove - no danger at all, provided you look after the dog and adopt basic hygiene: follow the instructions on the container, wear rubber gloves or disposables, don't splash the stuff on yourself (I usually wear protective glasses), wait for a dry day.

I've got rid of several infestations quite easily.

Talkback: Making a stumpery

Posted: 18/01/2013 at 09:51
ould I just appeal to everyone not to go out into the countryside and start bringing wood home, instead of leaving it where it is already supporting its own wildlife. If you've got newly-cut wood on site, by all means use it, but otherwise leave it where it is

Discussions started by Joe_the_Gardener

Swifts in decline

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Useful tool

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Gardeners World Quiz

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Silver birch

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Hedging shears

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8 threads returned