Laura Corin

Latest posts by Laura Corin

Waterlogged area

Posted: 18/05/2012 at 22:52

Do you mostly want to dry it out or do you want it to be productive as well?  I have a squelchy area that I have planted with willow cuttings for winter colour/cut stems/catkins.  The area is away from any drains - you have to be careful about willow roots getting into pipes.  I bought mine from World of Willow.

Help! How can you get rid of grass in the border?

Posted: 18/05/2012 at 22:49

That's really hard.  I stripped turf off an area to make a bed last year and, even with taking off a good layer and trying to cut deep enough to get the grass roots,  I spent last year battling grass.  This year is better - I still get grass coming up, but not nearly so badly.  I find I just have to keep on top of it or it will establish really quickly.

just moved to Shetland

Posted: 18/05/2012 at 22:43

I'm glad it's going well.  I have found that small plants work well - it seems to be less of a shock if they have to cope with the wind when they are small.  One thing that works well is planting shrubs/trees in tubes.  These provide a warm and sheltered microclimate to allow things to settle in.  A few years ago I planted some hawthorn (should be very tough) in tubes and some without, all in a very windy area.  The ones that were planted in tubes are now twice the height and width of the others.

Talkback: Stinging nettles

Posted: 15/05/2012 at 22:42

I've used glyphosate and wallpaper paste to eradicate creeping buttercup from amongst heathers.  It worked really well.  It was a slow and backbreaking job, but the alternative was ripping out 2m x 2m of mature heathers.  I've seen mention online that you can use glyphosate/Roundup if you have chickens, but you'd need to do some research on that.

I have a large patch of nettles that I allow to flourish for the wildlife in the far corner of my garden.  Any that I find elsewhere I pull up/poison.  I poison docks and pull up/poison creeping buttercup, except in a large boggy area where I have nothing but buttercups so they just do their thing.  One day I might have time to dig it all out and make a bog garden/natural pond.

Should I be hand pollinating my fruit trees?

Posted: 15/05/2012 at 22:36

I have three of each tree (three sweet cherries, three russets, three discovery) so I have enough trees to pollinate each other.  Each has borne a few fruit in the past but this is the first year when they have a good amount of blossom, so I'd hate to miss out on fruit.  Then again, the deer would probably eat the fruit anyway...

It was hailing again today but tomorrow is meant to be sunny.

Should I be hand pollinating my fruit trees?

Posted: 15/05/2012 at 15:54

I have young cherry and apple (Egremont Russett, DIscovery) trees in flower but it's very chilly and I'm not seeing any bees or other insects.  Do I just use a paint brush and dab it from flower to flower?  Anything else I should know?



Posted: 13/05/2012 at 07:55

I've just watched six baby rabbits killed by a crow.  Not pretty but fairly fast and I'm not too romantic about rabbits.  They are a non-native destructive species.

I have a local contact with a rifle who comes and shoots rabbits for me periodically and feeds them to his dogs.

I don't have any good suggestions apart from a really good fence.  I do have some plants that are not eaten by rabbits, generally grey-leaved or pungent plants, but, as the previous poster mentioned, rabbits will eat almost anything if curious or hungry enough.

Rabbits and Deer destroying garden!

Posted: 08/05/2012 at 21:08

When we moved in and the garden was completely unfenced, the following seemed to have survived the rabbits and the ?roe? deer: box, rhododendron, rosemary, lavender, forsythia, broom, spurge, flowering currant, bearded iris, flowering currant, bear's britches, primula, muscari, thistles, lily of the valley, daffodils, eryngium, allium, spirea, honeysuckle, clematis, buddleia, heather...

As far as chasing them off: I've seen people using old CDs to frighten off deer, but I'm not sure how useful that would be in winter when they only turn up after dark.


Posted: 08/05/2012 at 20:50

I can't offer you inexpensive.  The only two things that work for me are a) planting things that rabbits don't like to eat and b) putting up a rabbit fence.  

a) won't help you much on an allotment - the only edibles I can think of that rabbits are less likely to eat are mediterranean herbs.  

b) my rabbit fence is about 90cm tall and is laid so that it runs under the turf horizontally outwards from the bottom for about 30cm.  So far, this seems to keep them out as they haven't worked out that they need to start a long way out to burrow underneath.

Aphids on seedlings

Posted: 08/05/2012 at 20:19

I am raising some Geums from seed - they are currently about 3" tall and are in 3" pots on a windowsill.  Somehow they have got greenfly.  I pick the greenfly off every day and squash them, but they come back very fast.  Is there anything else I can do?  It's very hard getting at the tiny insects without crushing the fragile stems.

Discussions started by Laura Corin

Do you really need special seed compost?

Replies: 5    Views: 1914
Last Post: 16/04/2014 at 06:42

Rotation with only two beds?

Replies: 5    Views: 1205
Last Post: 20/02/2014 at 10:33

Can I really plant these peas and carrots so early?

Replies: 5    Views: 1451
Last Post: 05/02/2014 at 17:28

Is this area suitable for growing veg?

Replies: 0    Views: 1392
Last Post: 24/06/2012 at 21:56

Newspaper under woodchips as mulch?

Replies: 2    Views: 1853
Last Post: 15/06/2012 at 07:44

Is anyone growing Asian pears?

Replies: 0    Views: 1027
Last Post: 13/06/2012 at 07:39

Should I be hand pollinating my fruit trees?

Replies: 3    Views: 2088
Last Post: 15/05/2012 at 22:36

Aphids on seedlings

Replies: 1    Views: 1069
Last Post: 08/05/2012 at 21:28

Mulching after rain - compacting soil?

Replies: 2    Views: 1806
Last Post: 23/04/2012 at 19:08

Digging a natural, unlined pond?

Replies: 2    Views: 2665
Last Post: 17/04/2012 at 22:18

Help me to love my peonies

Replies: 2    Views: 1362
Last Post: 13/04/2012 at 22:55
11 threads returned