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Mike Allen

Latest posts by Mike Allen

Where's Mike?

Posted: 24/07/2014 at 21:15
Well, all said and done. Another chapter in my life hits the dust. It appears that at least two ladies here are not members of my fan club. Joke. Any promises I may have made. I will do my best to keep my word. In the meantime I will look in now and then, but I will keep my experiences to myself.

Happy gardening friends.

Caution..Spoof emailers.

Posted: 23/07/2014 at 23:02
Recently I had an email from a reporter. Intrest was shown in the post I had posted on slugs and snails. To set everyone at rest. The reporter works for the Wall St Journal. All legit.

Where's Mike?

Posted: 23/07/2014 at 22:57
Auto biography!!!! hang on a minute. This has made think. Oh, there I go again. This thinking lark will be the ruin of me. To be frank, I am still thinking about a post of a member. She quoted, that I was a cantankerous git. Where did that come frome?? I must confess. My biggest problem in life apart from me is. I can't let go. I will freely forgive, but sad to say. I have a photographic memory.
Lets press on. Pauline, how strange you have lived in Erith. Believe me, to see the market in Woolwich now. You would want to puke. The Royal Arsenal has long gone. The main gate still stands but it's unrecognizable. Beresford Square market. Remember all the stalls, the veg stalls, then the fish stalls, then the fruit etc. the flower stalls, Fowlers the leather and bag stall. Then the high pavement. The old cinema went ages ago just as the supermarkets were starting up. There was a husband and wife team running a plant stall. We became good friends. Actually many of the stall holders knew me and my family, so to shop with them, usually a good deal took place. Often when Val and I were first married, we'd get our veg et there. More often than not I hand over the money and get the same amount back as change plus big smile and a wink. Sadly those days are long gone. Dad and I used to deal with Arthur Fowler on the leather stall. At an early age, I learned how to sole and heel boots and shoes, so our supplies came from him. Back to the plant stall. This guy had a nursery in West Malling. He grew loads of roses amongst other things. We got chatting etc. By this time I had left the police and the parks and was now head gardener at the Royal Herbert Hospital. A military hospital. I had been asked to take on this position. Two 75 foot greenhouses vast grounds. Hey ho. In time a driver delivering medical gases, came around to the greenhouses. Hi Mick. Yes says I, thats me. Hi, I'm Alf. I work for BOG british Oxygen Gases. Hand shakes . Mick you seem to have a reputation. Mick jokenly, yes, six months in Wandsworth. Two years in the scrubs. I can still see Alf almost peeing himself with laughter. No, serious Mick. Down at our depot we have a bit of a gardening club. We were wondering if you could keep us supplied. Well Alf. I have this agreement with the hospital, that as long as I do my job, the rest is mine. So a pact was made. I grew and sold on the plants. I had bought the seed. Then came the question. Can you get us some roses.? Yes mate. Hey Mick don't go near Mills in the market, he's crap. For once mick stayed quiet. In time Alf returns with a multi page list. I consulted Millsie. Yes mate, no problems. So one day Gets a shout from security. This was at the time of a certain bombing spate. Mr Allen, there is a pantechnicon at the main gate, with a load of roses. Thanks mate, send him around. In time the load arrives. The driver is pi****** himself with laughter. Whats up Dave. Mike, Adolph at the gate, he insisted on checking the load. He's not going to lioke you. He's had more pricks and scratches than a pin cushion. We unloaded. Bye the bye. I added just one shilling to the cost of each plant. Believe it or not. Alf lives in the next street to my daughter Amanda. He's now well into his eighties, sadly he lost his wife about ten years ago. We often meet up in the supermarket, and he still comments on those fantastic roses. Once again a very long friendship. I will do my best to vist Woolwich soon, and take a few piccies. To be honest although I still consider I can take care of myself. Woolwich and me. NO GO.

Arum Maculatum

Posted: 23/07/2014 at 21:58
I believe a while back, someone wanted a plant ID. It was A.Maculatum. Then a member stated, he/she would like one in their garden. I have possibly a plant plus seeds to dispose of. If the member is still interested, PM me your address. It's a freebie from Mike.

Monty Don.

Posted: 23/07/2014 at 21:45
Oh dear.

It seems that I have upset the apple cart. Believe me. My very first mention of MD on this forum, I was perhaps a little critcal but honest. I had seen him in other features and along with his notes etc on Wikipedia, I formed the opinion that he'd had a rough time of it etc. Then having sat and thorughly enjoyed the dvd's, Around the world in 80 gardens. To me he was totally relaxed and proved himself a first rate writer, presenter and host. Thank you sir. However as said. Very limited individual reference was made to the plants. Now as we all claim. We are still learning, so it would have been appreciated had he stopped and asked a few questions relating type, name growing problems etc. This is a pet hate of mine, even with the RHS flower shows. There is never enough given to discussing individual plants etc. Soory to my forum friends if I got a few backs up. Although I don't watch GW, the thought of it fading out and probably being replaced by more Flog Its's etc?????????

Rose advice

Posted: 23/07/2014 at 19:53
Be patient, wait and see. The fallacy regarding the number of leves/leflets has caused confusion for years. I would leve it until pruning time. Compare the actual stem and thorns as well.

Reduced Shredder from Tesco

Posted: 22/07/2014 at 22:51
Artie. Take the refund. PM me asto where you live. Might be to your advantage.

Where's Mike?

Posted: 22/07/2014 at 22:45
Back again. Hey! who was who wanted to know more of my biker days. Val one day bought me a s/h Honda 250 CB something or other. Electric start etc. Side by side. I doubt if there was much difference in that and the old thunderbird sizewise. I reall loved it. I only used it to an from Eltham and Woolwich. Strange, come to think of it. Val never showed any interest in riding pillion. Perhaps she recalled the time when I had bought a Matchless with sidecar from a friend. I spent a small fortune on doing the bike up. In those days, anything over a score..??20 was a fortune. Hey, I had picked up the combo on the way home from work police. I'd never ridden a combo before. Naughty naughty. I had no insurance. I arrived home with the unit, safe and sound. Soon the bike and chair were legal and in tip top form. OK Val, jump in. Our tour consisted of all left hand turns. Then the final turn. Uphill to home. Halfway up the hill, the combo decided to turn sharp right. BH!!!! Val out quick. Once back outside home. way.
From then on. I had a Mobylet a half m/c and a pedal bike. To be honest. My old oppo from the job and I. We would love to ride a Thunderbird again. Bye the bye. my mate an I have remained mates for over fifty years. He was my pupil when he joined traffic. Hows that for a friendship?

Please watch this space for more episodes.

Where's Mike?

Posted: 22/07/2014 at 22:24
Sorry to continue. I have found in the past, some post appearing...cut short. Although now I talk about motor bikes. A brief story. Believe that and you will believe anything. I had a 250cc BSA C11G. my own property. I would go and visit my sweetheart Val. At the time. She lived with her parents in Welling. I lived with mine in Woolwich. I still had thebike when we got married. By this time I had been accepted for traffic. We decided one day to take a ride out to the Isle of Grain. Weather wasn't too good, so Val wore my leatherette bomber jacket, and her white..crash helmet. I wore my police m/c mac, numbers covered over and my job crash helmet, badge covered. All in all we had a good day out. Just the two of us. On the way home. The heavens let rip. What a storm. No fibs. The lightening was doing the dance of the sugar plum fairies on the handlebars. Good old rubber tyres. In time. We decided to stop for a cuppa. Dismounting and turning to each other. True. Both of us nearly peed ourselves with laughter. Poor little Val. Her goggles were half filled with whitewash. My police mac. Bloddy hell...ooops sorry. It looked more like a zebra skin. Black with white stripes, or was it, white with black stripes. Throughout the remainder of our life together. That episode never left us. To be continued:

Where's Mike?

Posted: 22/07/2014 at 22:07
Sounds good Philppa, thank you.
Just a few add-ons to the bike tales. That day the bike caught fire. It took the brigade over twenty miutes to put it out. Quite frightening, as it was in a one way street with cars parked both sides. I got a lift on the fire engine to Clerkenwell Court. Must have looked strange. A traffic cop alighting from a fire engine. If looks could have killed. My entry to the courtroom.Sitting there was my Inspector. He hated my guts, all due to me having beat him on a point of law. Anyway at the end of the day. I won all my twentyseven cases. The side of my face was by this time very sore and painful, where it had ben scorched. Although I was begining to feel a bit shaky by now, even a couple of mouthpieces shook hands and congratulated me. Shame their clients still had to pay up. A few weeks later, there I was back in the same court. Just proves how news travels. Once again I had a string of cases. I won the lot. In fact. During my time as a trafpol, I lost only four cases. Soon after that I left the job. However as my last case of the day closed. The magistrate. Mr Robey. He was the son of the music hall star, George Robey. He made an announcement to the court. Although it was something special. Mike felt a right twit. He summerised my recent accident etc. The court room burst into an audience of clapping hands. Finally I recieved a Coutrt/Magistrates Commendation. I bet my Inspector was well and truly gutted. Even he didn't have one of these.

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Interest fro across the pond.

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What is going on?

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Great revival of British Gardens

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