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Mark Feather

Latest posts by Mark Feather

1 to 10 of 21

Cats in Gardens

Posted: 30/01/2014 at 19:26

I wonder just how many of those people that want this thread to quietly die away and disappear own cats!?

I shall be contacting Jessica 3 this evening

Cats in Gardens

Posted: 29/01/2014 at 23:19

Perhaps cats should wear "Cat Nappies" after all this can't be cruel because we apply Nappies to our own children for the first few years of their lives.

A muzzle should be worn by any animal that can inflict injury or death to any other creature or person including dogs and cats, I'm sure there are other pets and animals too.

Cats in Gardens

Posted: 29/01/2014 at 23:07

Should cats permanently wear Muzzles and a chastity belt that covers and restricts the animals complete rear end!?

When the cat goes home it can then be fed at one end and cleaned up at the other by the owner!

Cats in Gardens

Posted: 29/01/2014 at 21:29

Last winter I had many many birds at the feeders and several mice in the garden as a whole. 30+ house sparrows used to ground feed on seed around the garden and I always had a good few blackbirds dotted about the garden.

This winter, a bird at the feeders is rare and unusual, I have very few blackbirds and no sparrows.

Last winter I spend just short of £80 on feed, this year I have spend less than £20 so far and I'm going to be left much of it the way things are going. I thought at first that the cause was a relatively mild winter and an abundance of natural food.

It wasn't until a week or so ago that I found out why, I now have at least 4 cats visiting the garden on a regular basis.

I've always believed for years though that ALL pets / domestic animals should be mandatorily  licenced, electronically tagged and insured and before anybody can have a domestic animal they should first attend a mandatory college course and obtain a certificate to prove the course was completed which must list the animals and breeds that the bearer is allowed to keep and look after.  The course should establish if the person(s) are fit and able to have an animal, if the property that the person lives at is a suitable property to house an animal.

Animals capable of inflicting injury should be mandatorily muzzled at all times including the home.

Any domestic animal outdoors at any time unattended should be caught, if untagged it should be destroyed, if tagged the owner fined at least £100 plus costs incurred.

Farmers, I believe have a right to shoot dogs harassing livestock, should we have the right to shoot a domestic animal (cats) trespassing and unattended in our gardens causing damage, death to our wildlife and general disruption!?

Moving an Old Berberis Darwinii

Posted: 16/01/2014 at 18:50

 I'd like to see some of those nice big chunky roots showing above the ground a bit.

Just the angle of the final photograph.

The chunky roots are still above ground and the original hole underneath is still there too. The burberis is still supported and will probably remain that way for at least 6 months or even longer. I am expecting the soil level to settle down some and because the burberis is being held firm, it itself wont sink as the soil settles.  The theory being that more of the chunky roots will expose themselves as the next few months progress.

We are expecting a shed load of rain over the weekend! which I think will cause a fair amount of settlement.

Just a theory.

Moving an Old Berberis Darwinii

Posted: 16/01/2014 at 17:38

We have now successfully moved this Burberis at last, it didn't happen over the Xmas / New Year holiday after all.  But we did get a very big hole dug out where we decided to move it to during the holiday. We also dug a deep trench around the burberis leaving a circular clump of earth with a diameter of nearly 50". Any roots that came out beyond this clump were chopped, there were only 4 that were chopped all having a diameter of less than the thickness of my little finger.

The burberis was then supported to stop it from falling over and falling into its own hole as we carefully excavated the root ball. These same horizontal timbers that helped to support the burberis were left in place and used to help us lift and move the burberis into its new location without us getting prickled to death and of course this meant that the root system wouldn't get damaged either. The careful excavation of the remaining clump didn't take long, 3 people a good couple of hours.  The plants root system was small and very simple with very little damage, no tap root at all and a very shallow root system.

When moved it was again supported so that when the hole was filled in the roots  would end up fairly close to the same depth they were previously.

The hole was then filled with a mixture comprising of its original topsoil, a humus rich compost mixed together with a full bag of bonemeal. As the hole was filled rootgrow was sprinkled over the roots prior to being covered. We then pruned the top back quite hard before it was foliar fed with a mixture of water and Phostrogen.

Hope it survives!



Moving an Old Berberis Darwinii

Posted: 18/11/2013 at 09:36

I know it doesn't look a great shape in the photograph but it is and it's old and very much loved by a lot people.

It didn't take long for people in the local community to find out it was in danger of being pulled up.

My life is at risk if i don't at least try, so far 4 people have volunteered to help.

I'll do my best to take photos and make a note of how and what we do when we move it and i'll let you all know how it gets on over the next 12 months or so.

Moving an Old Berberis Darwinii

Posted: 15/11/2013 at 17:23

Thank you to all who have offered advice, encouragement, ideas and suggestions etc.

Thank you to Jim Mcad.

I shall be giving it a go and i'll begin by digging over a 42" Diameter circle around it tomorrow. I'll also take some cuttings too and pot them.

It hasn't gone into dormancy yet, in fact it's in flower!

I won't attempt to dig it out until Xmas / very early new year.

Moving an Old Berberis Darwinii

Posted: 14/11/2013 at 21:50
Dovefromabove wrote (see)

Verdun, if it will re-shoot from really old wood, what do you think the chances of survival are if it was hard-pruned this year, down to 2or 3 ft say, and then left a year to reshoot, and then moved?

An interesting idea but unfortunatley i / the building can't wait that long.

It may fall down on its own! the building that is!

Structural repairs to the building must take place asap and i need to be prepared to pour in the footings for the extension asap after the last frost this next spring.

Thank you though

Snow Drop Or Not?

Posted: 14/11/2013 at 20:26

Excellent Result, thank you.


Never heard of Snow Flakes or Fairy's Skirts before.

Have seen several Fairy's though after a bottle, or two if i'm honest bottles of Red!!!!!!!!!!!!!


Thank you

1 to 10 of 21

Discussions started by Mark Feather

Snow Drop Or Not?

What is this Plant? 
Replies: 5    Views: 302
Last Post: 14/11/2013 at 20:26

Moving an Old Berberis Darwinii

Preparing, Digging Out & Moving an Old Berberis 
Replies: 37    Views: 1004
Last Post: 16/01/2014 at 19:42

Gardening For Wildlife

From The Begining! 
Replies: 15    Views: 862
Last Post: 08/02/2013 at 13:29
3 threads returned