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Mike Allen

Latest posts by Mike Allen

Just my luck

Posted: 06/07/2014 at 22:42
Thanks folks for your input. Verd. I am an ex traffic cop. I know thye ropes and cases like tis. Go fly your kite. Thanks anyway.

Glass cutter

Posted: 06/07/2014 at 22:25
Diamond. Glass can so often be likened to people. Old glass. The oldies. Please try and captivate the reallity and the humour. Oldies, full and at times overloaded with knowledge etc. Catch them at the wrong moment and. Whey ho. They will explode. Just the same as a pane of glass. Glass, especially old glass. It can become very tough and also brittle at times. How, why? to be honest I don't know. What I have learned is, and I hope no do gooders wil shout me down. Some very strange things happen with glass. Let's skip the science etc. But as many may have found. To cut a pane of glass takes skill. Add to this, to cut old glass. However steady your hand might be. Reaching breaking point. That straight line suddenly bursts into a spiders web. Tip. Old panes of glass. Thoroughly clean them. Then keep them in a close enviroment for a few days. Then place upon a firm base. Take just one strike/stroke of the cutter. Bend and break. Please try and avoid constant scribing with the glass cutter.

Just my luck

Posted: 06/07/2014 at 21:39
Actually I don't believe in luck. Mind you according to common sayings. I have in the past trod in so called good luck. NO. This morning my neighbour gave me a knock...on the door bell. Hi Mick. Bad news mate. I wsuddenly found myself imagining some one had died etc. What is it Mark. About one o'clock this morning, someone crashed the back of your car, and drove off. 'fraid I didn't get their number. I have a Nissan Almera Tino 04 Reg less than 30K on the clock. It was a motorbility car so serviced from new. Our previous car a Primera had been stolen soon after we had a recon engine fitted cost 1K. I keep it regularly serviced, even though I do under 2K a year. Unfortunately they don't hold their value. In my case, I hope this car serves me to the last. The damage. Off-side rear quarter panel badly damaged and plastic bumper dislodged. A few paint grazes. I used to do a bit of auto repairs in the past, to put an extra crust on the table. Now I don't seem to have the get up and go anymore. Still, I probably will get some isopon etc and fill it in etc. I am fully comp insured etc, but due to the cost of repairs nowadays, most insurances go for write offs. I love my car as such. So No to the insurance. I will test it out for under body damage and if OK, out comes the pollyfiller. Since moving into my flat, I have had over eight cars damaged /written off. Still thankfully nobody was in my car. From the skid marks. It is evident that the nearside front of the other car was defective. Still no good contacting the police.

Nasal Polyp OP

Posted: 06/07/2014 at 21:20
This is IMHO why this forum is so well supported. As one member recently pointed out. Mike also subscribes to another garden forum. It is so bland, so much so, that regular contributors can be counted on one hand. I have made many new friends since joining and have truly appreciated the love and concern by members in my time of need.
Sadly though. I would like to see individuals now and then saying, 'SORRY' when they have offended others. A simple saying like those three little words. However those words mean so much.
Fishy. Weather too hot for chocs. The card etc is in the post.

Collecting and Saving Seed.

Posted: 06/07/2014 at 20:59
Fishy65. If my memory serves me correct, from the original post. My mention of 'dust' related to what had accumulated after the seed had been collected cleaned and stored. The dust was actually the remains of seeds that had been eaten by the tiny bugs, and also the dead remains of the bugs themselves. I hope this helps.
If I may. In no way do I ever set out to deter anyone from trying things out. Rather I like to pass on other points that I have learned over time. I do feel that whether intentionally or not, that some just don't wish to know. I can assure one and all. I do my best to please people rather than rub them up the wrong way. Just enjoy your hobby.

Collecting and Saving Seed.

Posted: 06/07/2014 at 18:48
Ooops not all of my post printed up. Philippa. You're no Irish by any chance, are you? They like digging holes. Incidentally just a small fact. Seed saving does have it's if's and but's. For instance. Inadequetly ripened seed will not always germinate, and problems can occure with semi-ripe seed. Very few types of seed can be sown in the green and give satisfactory results. Just a tip.

no flowers on gladioli

Posted: 05/07/2014 at 23:45
Roy. This is or more corectly has become a regular feature. So sad to say. Modern technology has overtaken itself. How often can we buy a sack of daff bulbs for next to nothing. Plant them and, and, amd nothing. Sad to say, the commercial world has gone mad. Also purchasers such as you and me. We buy, we plant, we gasp, but. WE DON'T COMPLAIN. For instance. I class myself as a professional horticulturist. I have purchased sacks of different daffs etc. Plenty of leaves. No flowers. Do we save reciepts etc and do we complain. NO.

Talkback: Yellow leaves and slow growth

Posted: 05/07/2014 at 23:37
I love your blogs and your general writings. Might I pick your brains etc. I am an oldie. 75 in fact I bagan gardening as the bombs fell in 1944/5 alongside my dad. I have endured a professional life in horticulture. Amongst my credits. I gained a first in general horticulture. Likewise in groundsmanship etc. Take a look at my profile on GW forums. Now I am engaged in plant pathology. Pippa old luv. I am contemplating writing a book. Can you. Will you please impart some of your knowledge.

Kindest regards.

Collecting and Saving Seed.

Posted: 05/07/2014 at 22:50
Well there cetainly is much interest this subject. Might I be allowed to add a few tips. To bin with, we are all aware that different plants flower and set seed at a variety of times. So we can't expect to go into the garden or plot, armed with an assortment of jars, boxes and packets, fully expecting to return indoors with loads of seeds. Probably a major factor to seed collecting is, being able to recognize just when to pick the pods. Then to be aware of the sensitivity of some pods. I well recall one year in the greenhouse. For the life of me, I can't remember the plant but. The pods were like tiny pea pods. Many had turned a rich bronze colour. So Mike armed with a pair of fine nail scissors in one hand and a small container in the other. I am still convinced that I hadn't actually touched the plant when, like rapid fire. Pods were bursting open and tiny seeds were being fired all over the place. In the wild. Ivy leaved toadflax is a great marksman. When you see tiny plants growing through the cement pointing of walls. Anyway, as my greenhouse staging is compost covered. It wasn't long before the whole are resembled a bed of mustard and cress. But I wanted the seeds, so the next attempt called for better preparation. More or less an open fronted box lined with white paper. In many cases it is wise to first obtain a supply of paper bags, very small ones, such as kids used to be able to buy a few pence worth of sweets in. As the time draws close for the pods to open, the pod can be bagged up, using some twine etc to close the bag. Incidentally, I don't know if you have a local 99p shop close by. They stock an assortment of green shaped plastic ties but with a spring clip. Intended to hold stems to canes etc. They are ideal. Please don't be in a hurry to gather the seed. In time you will become expert at identifying all the tell tale indicators. A special tip, regarding really fleshy podded seeds such as Irises. Just as these are swelling up, our arch enemies snails and slugs are really gorging themselves. If invaded, then I suggest you cut off the pod bearing stem, as low down as possible. Then in an out of the way place. Hang the stems upside down. Despite the many myths that once a fower has been pollinated/fertilized then all is well. WRONG. Just like a tiny embyo in the mothers womb, the tiny seeds require feeding. Leaving a long stalk attached, and hanging upside down. A good degree of natural feed will drain into the seed capsule. Sadly so many collectectors become dissappointed because their saved seed fails. Mainly this is down to collecting unripe seed. In addition to this. Have you perhaps suffered distress, when picking up your seed collection ready for sowing, and wow!. Where have all those glossy black seeds gone. In your hand you have nowt but dust. I am fortunate in this respect. [I am attempting to avoid the odd comment...big head] I do a lot of lab research and the microscope reveals so much. So taking a really close look at this dust. Yes I identify minute remains of seeds, and what is all this other dust. Opening up the magnification. OK. There are dust/dirt particles but als there are loads of tiny microscopic dead bodies of mites. I have mentioned before that in the case of slugs. Even with the naked eye, one can see loads of mites bugs etc rushing about all over the body. With seeds. Not so obvious. Perhaps in the past I may have suggested a quick spray of insecticide over the seeds. I have now realised that some seeds can actually absorb such chemicals and this can cause mutations etc even death to the seed. Might I suggest. Placing the collected seed into a capped container. Then using the container in much the same way as a field collector might, as a killing jar, a tiny wad of cotton wool soaked in some proprietary chemical. The inside air beco

Talkback: Leaf-cutter bees

Posted: 05/07/2014 at 21:40
In the RHS Encyclopedia of pests and diseases. It actually lists these bees as pests. Howver despite the destruction they can cause, they are protected. The advice given is to constantly water the plant and if need be, swat the bee. Incidentally many other plants and shrubs, are a natural source for this lady's behaviour.

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Just my luck

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Talkback: Yellow leaves and slow growth

Pippa. I love your blogs and your general writings. Might I pick your brains etc. I am an oldie. 75 in fact I bagan gardening as the bomb... 
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Last Post: 05/07/2014 at 23:37

Collecting and Saving Seed.

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Last Post: 07/07/2014 at 22:22
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