Mike Allen

Latest posts by Mike Allen

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Worries & troubles that affect Forum friends.

Posted: 30/09/2014 at 21:09
I really do think, that at times we can be our own worst enemy. Yes naturally we all have that inbuilt feeling of empathy, compassion and love. It IS very difficult to stay on top, when you see a loved one suffering, and to us as individuals. The medics could do more. Every aspect of daily life, we question it. Believe me. I share your thoughts and feelings. I really do. Do we not sometimes feel like flipping our lid, when the very one we are trying to help, gets their back up and won't budge. My old mum lived to the age of 90 and a half. For several years her eyesight became affected. In the end, the opthalmic surgeons stepped in. The consultant surgeon told me. We have fitted complete new lens in her eyes. As far as we can tell, the operation was a complete success. Mum claimed that she was still blind. The local council had fitted controlled locking system to her front door. Mum lived in a grounfloor flat just across the green from Val and I. It was not possible to be with her 24/7 In the end local nursing staff would visit twice a day. Problem. Sometimes the first vistit would be delayed so mum would be gotten up, washed dressed etc sometimes around two in the afternoon. Of course she was by this time incontinent etc. So for hours she had had to lie there in a wet bed. Then a couple of hours later, two more nurses would turn up to put mum to bed. At one point. I really did have a go. One supervisor slated me. Michael. You could change your mum, wash and care for her needs. In my book. No way. My mum was my mum. To even think about seeing her nakedness. NO. Then one halloween night. To young boys knocked on my door. Scuse me Sir. That old lady over there. We knocked at her door and she let us in. She is sitting there playing with a keyboard. Thanks lads. I'll take care of it. Over I goes and fair enough. Mum is siting there, telly on and listening. On the table was the door control gadget. Fingers poised. I had a good chat to her. Believe me, my heart was in my mouth. How come. Why is this happening to my mum? I once again tried to explain how and when to click which button. It got to the point where I grabbed her hand and pressed down hard on the buttons. To sum up. Although my memories are many. The saddest one is. What a beast I must have been. Just at that single moment. I lost control. Whatever we do, however much we love our parents or others. It seems to be a wheight/problem where we need help.

What to grow with bluebells?

Posted: 30/09/2014 at 00:00
Winter aconite and wood anemones.

Veg trig

Posted: 29/09/2014 at 23:57
Sound advice Dove.

Worries & troubles that affect Forum friends.

Posted: 29/09/2014 at 23:54
Topbird. Thank you so much. You appear to be so understanding. This lass now aged around 52/3. She is as she terms it Black.. Jamaican roots but fro Kennington London. She often would call around and Val my late wife , her and my self had many interesting chats togeter. Val once said to me. Mick.. Please be careful. Why I would ask. Mick, Yvonne fancies you. She hangs on every word you say. Truthfully I hadn't spotted this. Val and I had what must have been the perfect marriage. It was love at first sigt and we spent the next 48 yrs together. We raise dto wonderful daughtes and unbelievably. We never had a row. Then when sadly Val died. Yvonne began texting/phoning etc my youngest, Amanda. Mandy, how's your dad. In the end Amanda said. Phone him talk to him. Yes Yvonne and I belong to the same belief. There are strict biblical based rules etc. To be honest. I say this. Hand on heart. Truthfully I don't know why I am interested in this lady. I was invited out for an evening meal by her. I had to decline. I had arrranged to to take Amanda and the gradchildren out. Yvonne pleaded. So I asked my friends Robin and Sue to come along. We had a great meal, and Sadly Sue was somewhat disabled. She winked at me and I cottoned on. So Yvonne and I existed. Why is still the mystery. At the table. Y was a real bute such a gem. Then back at my flat. We chated all four of us. Turned out. Y and me had worked for the same city solicitors. Y sugested we go places, museums art galleries and flower shows etc. Then oput of the blue she asks. Where are we going to live? Sorry babe? When we are maried. Bloddy hell. Mike is close to 75, Y is 52/3. Then for the time being. I want a close friend. Counting up the points. I at my stage of life have bugger all to offer a girl.. Then it all fell flat. I might be a horticulturist and a scientist, but. I am not a psycologist. This lady openly told me that she had been married and also had had a relationship, which way around, who cares. It now seems so clear to me. She continues to tell me. Mike. You have done nothing wrong. Mike you are one in a million. Yet she is reluctant even to meet in the High St. and have a coffee. As the gent that I am. I am constantly saying sorry. I fell thatshe has in the past sufferred two blows to her life. Despite her attempting to distance herself. Our text messages always end with XX. My daiugter Amanda considers she , Y, has treated me badly. Look I am a silly old begar and just want a bit of frienship. No back row snugles etc. Just friendship. There now. The lady author in Pink needs to watch out.

Trip to Cambridge University Botanical Garden 11th October

Posted: 29/09/2014 at 23:15
Great. I am gradually getting an old friend interested in gardening. Actually the 11th will be the anniversary of his wife's death. He has expressed an interest in coming alon. Wowee. I do hope we can make it. Love to all. Mike.

Help needed

Posted: 29/09/2014 at 23:08
Nick. Sadly I haven't the space to promote a compost heap etc. I should imagine most of us rely on what the local, Homebase/B&Q and the garden centres have on offer. I tried B&Q's general purpos compost. I think that had I saved my inhouse vacuum contents, that might have proved better. I have used Levingtons and most other everyday names. Sorry if this offends anyone but. In the greenhouse and the garden. Using it as a started compost and going forward. Potting up and re-pottin, even to bulking up the beds and borders. I swear by JA Bowers Multi purpose compost.

Reviving a Camelia

Posted: 29/09/2014 at 22:57
Container grown shrubs do look nice at times but. They do require more attention than say a bowl of tulips etc. Camelias can be a bit sensetive at time, although they can also be very tolerant. Sounds like your one has been left for a longtime to care for itself. Right or wrong time. IMO. If a plant is crying out for help. Then MOW is the time to step in and give it some TLC. Firstly. Check it over for boken, damaged growth and cut out. Spindly growth can also go. Think about as getting rid of poor sad sap drinkg rubbish. Then remove from the container. Wash away the old soil. Examine the roots. It is quite safe to cut away really thick heavy old root stock. Think all the time. You want this baby to get the best of everything. Repot with fresh ericaceouse compost. Water, preferably with rain water, why? Tap water contains chlorine and lime. Camelias are acid lovers. If you intend to keep the plant in a container, then you will have to really give it loads of TLC. Careful watering and feeding. A quick tip for those growing Camelias, Rhodos etc in the ground. Remember they are surface rooting and acid lovers. Most of the leaf damage being experienced now, may be due to rust of various kinds, but sudden climate, moisture changes are taking their toll.

Ground Cover Question

Posted: 29/09/2014 at 22:39
Hi Howard. Do you simply desire to hide the bare soil, or have you perhaps something in mind such as planting a few alpines also/ Slate chippings can be used, however as our friends say, they can slip or get washed down. Much depends on the gradient etc.

Solar powered pond pumps

Posted: 29/09/2014 at 22:34
Fishy. Dealing more with the solar panel. We had a pump/fountain in our pond, power supplied by the panel. The latter measured around 6x10" Study make. Worked very well until one of a visiting foxes became mesmorised by the changing led lights. It took little effort for foxy to chomp off the spray head. I then connected the panel to a water feature. In a very short time, the panel stopped working. Following various enquiries. The general feelins were much the same. The SP's don't last long and in most cases replacements don't exist. So a complete setup is required. It seems that to use water features etc in the garde, then a low voltage mains supply is well worth considering.
Hope the family are OK. Regards Mike.

Winter and shade hanging baskets

Posted: 28/09/2014 at 23:12
Fair do's. However. Frost can penetrate porches etc. Just stop an think. Here you have a plant in a container. Totally exposed to al weathers etc. As a hanging basket. Even the lowest parts are subject to cold, frost etc. Might I suggest, that unless your porch or other area is heated. Then take down you baskets and store in a frost free area.
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