Kate Bradbury

Latest posts by Kate Bradbury


Posted: 17/05/2012 at 11:23

Hi everyone, what wonderful photos! Please do keep them coming.

@gardeningfanatic, did you know that the beetle pic you put up is of the very rare oil beetle? Buglife would love to hear from you as they're trying to find out how rare it is. Link here

And for those of you lucky enough to have bumblebees nesting in your garden, the Bumblebee Conservation Trust would love to hear from you! This will help them learn more about where bumblebees nest, in order to save them. Link here


Talkback: Self-seeding plants

Posted: 17/05/2012 at 10:53
Hi everyone, thanks for your comments.

@oldchippy forget me nots, aquilegias and foxgloves are some of my favourite flowers. Aquilegias will sadly not grow in my garden for some reason. And nevermind Mrs oldchippy, as long as the goldfinches are happy!

@happymarion I didn't mean in a regular garden! If I ever get a nice piece of land, I could just leave it and sit and watch it grow. Glad you found lots of alpine strawberries. Are you going to make use of them?

@Chromebaby lovely to find new plants, isn't it? I was donated five young ivy plants by our local blackbird. I transplanted them and they're now starting to get established.


Talkback: Toad tadpoles

Posted: 02/05/2012 at 14:46

Thanks for all your comments.

@happymarion, yes I do stop to, er, look at the fungi! That's what I tell my running friends anyway. It seems such a shame to run by all of these wonderful things and not see them.

@Oldchippy I wish I were as lovely and graceful-looking as that tadpole!

@Reluctnt Gardener, the chip shop is often a stop point after the tadpoles, Mandy!

@Shed - that sounds beautiful. I look forward to hearing about your tadpoles


Sooty mould

Posted: 27/04/2012 at 17:58

Hi snowy43, I agree with Gold1locks, the best way to get rid of scale insect (the most likely cause of your sooty mould) is with fingernails and soapy water. I did this with my orange tree a few years ago, which also had mealybug - it took several weeks of regularly cleaning the leaves and removing the scale insects, but then it sorted itself out. I suspect that, when it was growing in the nursery, the tree was regularly sprayed and fertilised, and so had no natural defences to insects. It's now been growing organically for five years and has a few scale insects, but these don't ever reach pest proportions - they live in happy equilibrium with the tree.

Another thing you could do is just pop the lemon tree outside - many ladybird species love a scale insect or two


Wisteria Alba: sudden death

Posted: 27/04/2012 at 17:45

Oh, has it layered itself or is it a shoot from the base? It could be graft failure, which isn't uncommon in wisterias. If it's a shoot from the base (rootstock), then the new plant will be different to the cultivar you've grown, so it might be worth just getting rid and starting again. If you want to keep it to see what it turns in to then a little compost wouldn't do any harm, and keep the plant watered (I imagine you've had lots of rain recently though ). Then just see what happens!


Wisteria Alba: sudden death

Posted: 27/04/2012 at 17:03

Hi rockette, you say it is planted at the foot of a wall. I wonder if it is too dry? The immediate area next to a wall gets very little rain, known as a 'rain shadow'. That, coupled with the extremely dry autumn, may have contributed to the plant's demise.

Fingers crossed the bit that has layered itself will spring to life!



Posted: 27/04/2012 at 14:47

Hi Lisa, how much does it weigh? I've checked on the British Hedgehog Preservation website, and it says the minimum weight a hedgehog should be prior to hibernation is 450g (1lb), but that many carers like to get theirs up to a weight of 600g (1lb 6oz) before releasing them. So it follows that if they can survive a winter of hibernation at this weight, they can survive a wet spring, where there will be plenty of food for them. It's mating season for them now so, if it is a good weight, I would release it.



Posted: 25/04/2012 at 14:45

Hi Andrew

You could try 'Garden Pearl' (aka 'Gartenperle'), it's a compact bush variety that produces masses of bright red cherry tomatos. I've grown it in baskets and would recommend it.


Talkback: Emptying the compost bin

Posted: 24/04/2012 at 15:48
Thanks for your comments.

@oldchippy - so that's where he is! I hope you're looking after him. He can get quite aggressive in spring.

@Margaret5 and @fieldfest - my mum once had a rat in her compost and made me evict it, on Boxing Day! She said it was my fault as I made her garden more wildlife friendly but all she got was rats and wasps. Still, it was the only rat I've seen in a compost bin in 20 years of composting...

@happymarion - I think they like warm heaps, so it would make sense that a new heap is more attractive to slow worms as it's breaking down. I am very jealous of your slow worms!



Posted: 23/04/2012 at 09:57

Hi Lisa - great work! I would release him now but keep leaving food and water out at night for him in case he wants it.


Discussions started by Kate Bradbury

Unusual bird behaviour

Replies: 13    Views: 1510
Last Post: 05/09/2014 at 21:02

Talkback: Queen wasp

Lovely x x 
Replies: 6    Views: 1467
Last Post: 21/04/2013 at 07:22

Talkback: Leaf-cutter bees

Saw my first leaf-cutter only a couple of weeks ago Richard. Didn't get a chance to look at its underside... Kate 
Replies: 4    Views: 1278
Last Post: 05/07/2014 at 21:40

Potted ponds in Thailand

Just some of the many 'potted ponds' I found in Thailand 
Replies: 13    Views: 4681
Last Post: 24/02/2012 at 20:24


Replies: 5    Views: 2780
Last Post: 15/02/2012 at 14:45


Replies: 1    Views: 1412
Last Post: 17/12/2011 at 08:16


Replies: 4    Views: 1550
Last Post: 14/12/2011 at 20:26

Favourite tools

Replies: 17    Views: 2181
Last Post: 28/04/2012 at 10:06

Redesign of garden

Replies: 35    Views: 12376
Last Post: 15/03/2012 at 19:49

Seed buying

Replies: 7    Views: 2760
Last Post: 06/01/2012 at 12:16

Plants still in flower?

Replies: 64    Views: 22353
Last Post: 19/01/2012 at 21:10
11 threads returned