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Mike Allen

Latest posts by Mike Allen

The right soil for carnivorous plants in pot

Posted: 17/05/2014 at 22:37

Quantity of compost.  Quite a lot.  A suitable liner.  Even the familiar black refuse sack will do, provided it doesn't get punctured.  The larger rubble bags, obtainable at B&Q etc can also be used.  Might I suggest.  To cut back on cost.  No way will your plants require such a depth.  So half fill the container, the lighter the better, in case you wish to move the whole lot.  Then line it out.  To create a bog garden.  I would be inclined to pot-up your plants, perhaps afew sizes larger.  Then plunge the pots into the boggy compost.  To be honest.  I doubt very much that there is a special compost available.  What I do suggest is, that obviously the plants will require a very acid pH.  Perhaps if you live close to some stagnant pond, the water might be of benefit.  As time goes on, try and avoid using tap water to replenish stock.  Get a container fill it up preferably with rainwater, let is stand for ages in the garden then use this.  Remember this type of plant is often classified as being of the lower class. Very fascinating project.  I wish you well.

Strange white infestation in Viola pot

Posted: 17/05/2014 at 22:22

Depending on the volume of the infestation.  It is sometimes easiest to sandwich the leafe between finger and thumb and gently sqidge the enemy off.

I agree with the washin-up liquid etc, however industry keeps changing and without you being aware, some additional ingredients are/can be added to the concentrate.  There is a horticultural soap that can be obtained.  It's been in use for decades.


Posted: 17/05/2014 at 22:12

To be honest.  I am overwhelmed at the love and affection afforded me by the forum members.  Even our host Daniel.  Thank you.

I have just sent a general email to my friends, so to save time etc, I post the same here.  Truthfully I believe that all the good wishes etc plus the friendliness of the hospital staff, recovery will be speeded up.  Thank you all so very much.  Incidentally.  I tried sending a PM to BB2 with my address.  However the system seemed not to work.  I have no problems with giving out my details.  Michael Allen. FRHS. FLS.  35 Kingsground. SE9 5EZ



Well I am now back home after my op.  Actually I came home Thursday afternoon. At hosp. by 07.45 Monday.  Chat with the aneathetist.  No probs over faith etc.  Then a chat with one of the docs.  Honest folks.  You could easily mistake this chap as George Chilton's twin.  By the by.  It was all Christian names.  When this idea wa s introduce to staff of many jobs.  I thought it to be a bit of a liberty.  However in this instance.  The actual surgeon who I saw next, did cause my heart to miss a beat.  He at first seemed to put up the usual block over transfusions.   I thanked him in adavance, and told him that I highly respected his proffessionalism etc.  I trusted him with my life.  Regarding transfusions.  I obey my heavenly father.  So.  I relieve him of the responsibility of the blood issue.  The friendly Doc, Jonathon spoke up.  Alternatives Sir.  Volume expnaders.  I was then taken to get undressed then to the prep room. Loads of specialist were around me.  Next thing around 10.35 I was in the recovery room.  A very attractive nurse of non brit origin.  Hi Mike. How are you?  Would you like a cup of tea?  Then probably within the hour, I was on ward. SW3  [surgical ward 3]  Believe me friends.  By this time I was back in the conscious world.  It would have been so easy to imagine, one was in heaven.  The nursing staff.  Real angels on earth.  Even the cleaning staff.  Everone was so happy, always smiling etc.  The whole enviroment was such, that never during my short stay, did I hear a word of complaint from the staff.  Usually, there is the odd one complaing about their load in life. Here.  No.  The usual bedside visits from the medical teams, even the plebotomist and uncle tom cobbly and all.  It was always a very pleasant and friendly relationship. Prior to leaving. I got Amanda to buy a couple of large boxes of chocks. One for the day shift, one for the night staff.  Two members of the day team. Staff nurse Angela and student nurse Cloe, really worth their weight in gold.  Night staff. There was one special black nurse, so gentle and so kind. Also another nurse possible of staff rank.  I would think she was oriental. Honest .  These ladies were/are gems.  Anyway time to go. Angella gave me a supply of catheter bags and wished me well.  At that point I handed over the two boxes of chocs.  Oh Mike. So kind of you.  Thank you.  Then I recieved a really big kiss on the lips.  To be honest .  Were it to be found, that I needed to return to hospital.  I would insist on going back to SW3.  Truly the whole atmosphere aided a speedy recovery. The op was for bladder cancer.  It appears that the tumour was so deep.  As the surgeon wanted to clear it all. It took a vast amount of scraping, so much so, that the instruments perforated the wall of the bladder, so extra healing is requirer.  Then the whole area was cauterized.  It feels very strange, when submitting to the call of


Posted: 16/05/2014 at 23:17

Hi Friends.

To be honest. Al of thede wel wishes. Truly Mike's mind is buzzing.  To be honest.  I just cannnot recal what I might hve postesed.  Please give me a few days tgo respond. Truly.  Much sincere love gto all.  Mike.xxxx

Human irrigation system

Posted: 10/05/2014 at 23:11

KEF. Mike agrees.  I am in PM contact with Fishy.   EOS.

Hey friends and fellow gardeners..  WOW! what more can I say.  Look matey's  I am just a normal man in the street. Sadly I spotted some of the red stuff when taking a leak. GP referred me etc. OK.  For anyone of us.  Going through various tests etc. Not nice, bang goes your privacy etc, and at time the treatments hurt.  Sad to say. Yes it might be great at times when we attain great ages, however.  Fame has its own rewards or complications.  Yes it is sad.  When one ebnters the twylight yeras onlt to find, perhaps even more health problems. Cancersm dementia etc. Thankfully the good Lord promises us a much better future. In the mean time, we either accept or reject help.  In all honesty, you my beloved forum members,  We have never met, and probably never will. However.  We have buillt up such a strong relationship.  We don't criticise each others methods of gardening.  We have become a very close knit community. Then diversing from plants etc. to more personal problems.  Hey friends. I speak in this instance from the heart.  To me in my hour of need, you have all become such pillars of support.  Thank you. So just a day away, and all will be revealed.  I must be honest here and now.  Based on my religious beliefs, I have certain boundaries medically.  Believe me.  I am not worired. My dear friends.  How can I ever thank you for yor support..  Guys and Dolls.  Many kisses many thanks.  I love you all.

Where are YOU?

Posted: 10/05/2014 at 22:45

Busy Bee.


Hi.  I was always under the impression that chicken was classified as white meat such as pork.  Never mind.  A cuppa and a cheese sani will do, and a big hug.

Mystery plant

Posted: 10/05/2014 at 22:38

In my case. Perhaps due to bthe fact that all my working life has involved keeping records.  Then also.  I honestly admit.  In my own tiny way. I wamt to create an image.  So I keep a record. Thanks to the computer, this has been made easier.  Every sed I sow is recorded.  Then in the garden. Every plant planted every shrub et,  all are recorded.  So should a plant label dissapear I have rough record on the pc.  Also I want to keep my mind active and constructive.  I am nearing 75  I don't want to end up gar gar.  So I use the computer for my benefit.

Propagation of Campanula Portenschlagiana

Posted: 10/05/2014 at 22:27

I have to agree with Nut and Co.   So sorry to offend the RHS. and the experts.  Not wishing to boast,, but Mike has been at this since 1945, so I think I have learened a few things.  From the experts.Basically this is considered to be the best way etc.  Notice please. No figures are provided. Take a trip to the green Isle. Ireland.  All types and methods are used. Then back to this island.  The answer really is. try it and find out. Have a go.  Believe me.  I love carnations.  I have followed the experts downto the last grain of compost.  Results. Mike just can't grow carnations.


Posted: 10/05/2014 at 22:13

Please.  Not cat problems again. The other day.  I counted seventeen cats in my garden.  The downstair's lady [of the night]  She is an odd one.  Obviously as the saying goes.  Her lift never reached the top floor.  One minute she is all luvvy duvvy, the next she is throwing out threats and insults.  Recently she arrived home with two young cats.  Thankfully they still bore the shaved area of having been neutered.  Most of their time is spent in my garden.  Then even more recent, a tird cat arrives on the scene.  Very friendly, it will often visit me in the greenhouse. Well it bore no vet's attention.  Then as I say, suddenly  seventeen cats.  A giant black Tom took advantage and paid his respects to the wee damsel.  So it is more than likely that in due course there will be an increase in the feline population.  Mention has been made of using a water pistol.  I use an old washing up liquid bottle.  You know.  One or two cats actually face me up, when I squirt them.  Much to say.  Come on then.   I may have mentioned this before.  When at police training school.  We were dealing with the protection of animals act.  A whole list was studied of protected domestic animals.  Cats were not included.  Please imagine that classroom.  Language had no barriers.  One wpc was so shocked.  But what about my pussy?  I leave it to your broadest thinking as to the replies.  It is so strange and at times unbelieveable that cats are allowed such freedom.  Time and again folks move home.  Cat is left to fend for it'self.  I once had control of the grounds of a military hospital.  Below the groundfloor was an area that house all the heating pipes etc.  Over time.  Many cats made their home there.  The Commandant one day called me into his office. Mr Allen.  Mike.  I ama ware from your records.  You are/were a marksman.  Look old chap.  These ferral cats  they are cusing havoc.  I well knew this, because walking about in the grounds, I had several times been challenged by a cat.  Believe me.  These animals were long seperated from the family pet.  Sorry folks, but Mike always tells the truth.  A few actually ended up in the skip, having collided with my spade.  Pest controllers had been called in.  Baits laid, traps set. Those lovely cleaning ladies would release any trapped cat, even at one point, they broke the locks from the entry doors to the cat pits.  I tell you no lies.  I entered the below floor level one day.  The stentch was suffocating.  This was remember part of a hospital.  Believe me.  A military hospital will always be much more up-speck than a NHS one.  So the Commandant asked me. Mike.  If I arrange the isue of  a weapon etc.  Can you oblige.  No good asking the garrison.  They couldn't hit a brick wall with a Sherman tank.  I agreed, shook hands etc. You won't believe this.  Some how the cleaners got wind of this and it was brooms and buckets down. To this day.  I never learned of the erradication of these cats.  Now of course there are so many protection groups.  Back to her downstairs.  She would at one time lock up and go away for the weekend.Poor doggy locked in.  Return home dog would be kicked out, because it a soild the floorboards. I called the RSPCA.  They sealed the front dor.  A neighbour mobiled her so she got away with it.  Val and i Our lives were made hell. The RSPCA will not act unless an animal is locked in for over seventy two hours.  Even I can't keep my legs crossed for that long.  So at the end of the day.  For you to t

This is in my neighbours garden flowering now, can anyone please identify it :)

Posted: 10/05/2014 at 21:20

Actually my daughter Amanda has such a giant of a bush of this.  So delightful it is, as it's in full bloom.  It will easily strike from cuttings.  Please remember, as with all the Solanum family.  It is poisonous.

Discussions started by Mike Allen

Wildlife gardening -Month by Month.

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Memories of Yesteryear.

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Posting an Avitar

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Last Post: 02/12/2014 at 02:42

Once again. SORRY.

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Last Post: 29/11/2014 at 10:11

Enough is enough.

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Eucalyptus trees & Paropsisterna selmani

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Orchid Lady

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A Special day.

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Help Please.

Replies: 2    Views: 328
Last Post: 24/11/2014 at 06:31

To cut everything down, or leave.

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Last Post: 01/12/2014 at 09:47

Something of an apology.

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Last Post: 25/11/2014 at 08:57

RHS Lily Group Bulb Auction.

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Last Post: 15/11/2014 at 22:59

Computer problems

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Last Post: 14/11/2014 at 22:45
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