John Harding

Latest posts by John Harding


Posted: 03/06/2014 at 19:37


Heucheras I bought for Eileen are 'Silver Scrolls' and 'Ginger Peach'

A friend Eileen has just been talking to on the phone has said that at East Lambrook Manor Gardens, just across the road from there is a pub that does fabulous food at really good prices so it looks as though lunch is sorted as well.

slugs, slugs and more slugs

Posted: 03/06/2014 at 19:28

Try Nemasys slug & snail nematodes which destroy gastropods from the inside and other animals eating them are not affected. I had an infestation of vine weevil grubs that were destroying all my seedlings when they were about 1.1/2" high by just eating the roots off. One application of Nemasys vine weevil treatment and problem ceased to exist. I'm guessing I will need to do another treatment in a few months time but it is worth it.


Posted: 03/06/2014 at 19:19

Hi all,

Had a brilliant day today: took OH to Highgrove, Nr Tetbury where we had the guided tour of the gardens then lunch in the Restaurant (our daughter's birthday present to her mum). Weather was a little overcast at first but brightened up before the tour concluded and there was no rain (thankfully). OH (Eileen) said that was the best birthday present she has ever had. Bought her a couple of Heucheras in the Highgrove shop which she is very pleased with and has planted them out already.

Just asked 'where shall we go tomorrow' - she hadn't thought about that so I suggested East Lambrook Manor Gardens, Nr South Petherton, Somerset, which features in the RHS 'Gardens' magazine this month. 

A day in the garden.

Posted: 03/06/2014 at 18:59

Pressure washers have a habit of the motor seizing up if they are left for a long time without being used. I had a Stihl PW that did this but the end of the motor shaft had a hexagon socket in the end that you could put an Allen key into and work the motor free. Had it for 20 years and was a good tool but eventually the motor burnt out so I have replaced the PW with a new one (same make).

Look for the end of the motor shaft and see if there is some way to turn the rotor to get it moving (or if it's already free to move you will know that's not the problem).

If the capacitor has blown it should be fairly obvious as when they go it's usually with a big flash & bang and the capacitor blows apart leaving a black sooty deposit behind which you will have to ask Sweep to clear up!

As the machine is electrical & pumping water you should have it PAT tested by a qualified electrician after you've looked at it/done anything to it 'cos if anything goes wrong and someone gets hurt guess who the finger will be pointing towards.

John Harding MBLI, Training officer to PUWER Regs 1998 (Provision & Use of Work Equipment Regulations 1998)  ...[and passionate gardener!!!]

Plant ID and bug info

Posted: 02/06/2014 at 11:34

I agree the shrub looks like a Choisya: the bug looks like a capsid bug - unlikely to do any great harm in the garden, they are sap suckers not predators and if you squash them you will have a nasty niff on your hands - literally!


Posted: 02/06/2014 at 11:21

Gas blow lamp kills most bugs!

This forum

Posted: 01/06/2014 at 21:14

Have booked tickets for Gardeners World Live for Friday 13th. Hope the weather is good this year. 'twasn't too bad last year though it did go cloudy & cool at lunchtime when we were sitting outside having munchies- then started to rain! The afternoon brought a few heavy showers too but we managed to stay under cover for most of it

Bugs....what is munching my brassicas??

Posted: 01/06/2014 at 21:05

If you don't remove all the eggs and caterpillars and net with a fine net it will be a waste of time. It's very early still in the season for cabbage whites and you can be sure many more will be all over your brassica patch during the next few months and they will decimate your plants. At least a good netting system will stand you in good stead for many years to come. I bought my nets from Knowle Nets in Dorset this year and they are paying dividends already as I have the healthiest pest free plants this year that I have ever had. Every year I have said 'I must get some netting' but never got around to doing it but after last years dis-spiriting waste of time, ground and effort I bit the bullet (so to speak) and bought the netting recommended by a friend, and boy am I glad now that I did. I have 4 raised beds and have decided I will invest in a new net cage each year now until I have protected all four beds (They're all slightly different sizes and I don't want to have to move them about every year). The guy at Knowle Nets was very knowledgable and helpful and sent exactly what I needed - he will know exactly what size netting you need if you tell him what you want to protect (or of course you can buy some netting at a GC and make or get someone to make up a frame). At least the Knowle Net frames are aluminium and will last for years.

uploading images

Posted: 25/05/2014 at 19:29

I use photoshop and click on the 'images' tab and scroll down to image size, then make the long side of the picture 2048. The short side will then be calculated automatically and you can then save as a separate file if you want to keep the original photo. As long as the photo doesn't exceed 3 mb they upload and can be enlarged by everyone by just left clicking on the picture when it appears on the forum page. In photoshop, when you click 'save' a dialog box pops up asking what size you want with the picture's megapixel size underneath and you can easily adjust the final pic size before saving.

Of course, you do have to have a version of photoshop to do it that way. There is a photoshop programme you can buy called photoshop elements which will work perfectly well with most PCs that is by no means as expensive as the full CS (Creative Suite) software.

uploading images

Posted: 24/05/2014 at 18:11
Couldn't have said it better myself.

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