London (change)
Today 20°C / 14°C
Tomorrow 21°C / 16°C

katekins


Latest posts by katekins

4 returned

Help Overwintering Geraniums - rotting??

Posted: 13/12/2013 at 02:04

you must remove any dead leaves regularly including the little bits on the stem, to avoid fungus, you can cut them back and de-pot them, in order to pack more into a smaller space, i've even packed dozens, like this into a 2 ft x 6 in window box, but you can keep them entire if you want, water them occasionally but keep them on the dry side, in a well ventilated room frost free room (this may be where you're going wrong), they come from south africa and hate the cold and damp.  in spring pot up/on into fresh compost and as these plants look a little untidy take cuttings from sturdy shoots when they start growing.  

Talkback: How to grow hippeastrum

Posted: 13/12/2013 at 01:48

i have had several amarylis bulbs for eight or nine years now, each year i re-pot them, around october ( it's my birthday and i was told that amarylis is the flower for my sign as the flower is often two sided like the scales of libra) giving the plants a good soak by plunging the pots in tepid water for several hours and then teasing some of the compost from between the roots. scrubbing the terracotta pots in hot soapy water and rinsing before re-potting the bulb in fresh bulb fibre, watering well. i water with baby bio solution to feed about once a week ( more in summer / less in winter) but these plants keep there leaves all year, i only remove the leaves if they go yellow.  the pots all sit on a 2nd storey west facing windowsill in the far north of england, so they get baked in summer although the window stays open and plenty of light in winter, window closed in a room that is cool but frost free, they flower beautifully every year about easter. i cut off the blooms when the flowers fade.    

Marigolds in the veg patch

Posted: 15/11/2013 at 18:32

i have read that Tagetes Sinata attracts Potato Cyst Eelorm's as they prefer this plant to the potato crop, this pest can lie dormant in the soil for up to 20 years, so cannot be controled entirely by rotation and commonly affects allotments, where potatoes are often grown as a ground clearing crop, with the old haums/ damaged potatoes being added to the compost heap, which may compound the problem.  advice from the experts includes, planting the Tagetes as a companion plant, always using certified seed potatoes, a 4 year( or longer) crop rotation, organic soil improvement prefferably by top dressing and a no dig system, and testing the potato crop in July/August by clearing away the soil from the haulm and checking for microscopic white cysys on the haulm ( if these are found dig up the potatoes a.s.a.p.before the damage ruins the entire crop and cut away infected parts of potato before use, discarding the infected parts in the dustbin rather than the compost heap, and clearing away the potato haulms and the Tagettes Sinata (without laying them on the souil surface) and disposing of these in the bin too. hopefully these measures will reduce the amount of damage, allowing  a decent crop to be grown.

My 1st allotment

Posted: 13/01/2012 at 04:03

can you tell the difference between the nasties and the not so nasties when it come to a handfull of roots, at this time of year? if so fine burn or rot down in bag all the nasties but dont start a compost heap with anything your not sure of  ...if not, i would advise a) double dig potato beds, inverting the soil over the previous forked over botom spit, usually gets rid of the not so nasties and you can spot weed any really nasties during the seasons cultivation of the potatoes when they rear thier ugly heads and you can see them for who they really are!. b) fork over onion bed and remove every weed and bit root you can ( burn them and save the bonfire ash to add to the soft fruit or the compost heap) add leaf mould & sand and dust with year old soot fork over or hoe again in three weeks, then tread to consolidate, three weeks before planting sets. c)  spray the weeds with a systemic weedkiller on the brassica bed when temperatures are above 7 degrees and weeds are actively growing, spraying again 3 weeks later to get the real nasties (do not put these poisoned weeds on the compost heap ..burn them whatever they are), then hoe before planting seedlings which are easier to weed and more able to cope with a little competition from any weeds which may germinate later in the season d) or shave off with a spade the top couple of inches of weed infested top soil and put this at the bottom of your 2 ft deep bean trenches along with and other part composted materials, shredded newspaper etc.. if you continue to do this every year removing every weed you see above ground every sunday for ten years you will only have to cope with the wind bourne weed seeds and you might have a weed free allotment we all dream of.  i still live in hope, and ive had my allotment 15 years.

4 returned

Discussions started by katekins

katekins has not started any discussions