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Mike Allen

Latest posts by Mike Allen

Help for flooded gardens

Posted: 14/02/2014 at 23:40

Forgive me please.  Mike is always ready to help out but.  Yes this is a wonderful suggestion by the author of this theme.  However.  Might it be better to wait a while, until the floodwaters subside etc..  Apart from being a horticulturist I am also  very interested in natural history etc, which includes the study etc of soil sciences.  Please.  Mike is in fact a very modest guy.  I am a Fellow of the Linnean Socy. A Forum specialising in natural history.  Closely related to the Royal Society.  On the RHS forum.  It has been blogged.  Concerns over the washing away of vital minerals etc.  Friends.  Please stop and take time to compose yourselves.  This planet that we live on.  It is self contained.  Please before you start creating ideas of helping out fellow gardeners.  Stop and think.  Take a breather.

RHS London Shows.

Posted: 14/02/2014 at 22:23

Actually no-one had noticed.  My original post had indicated this week end.  Anyway, of course its Fri,21.   I will do my best to be there both days around midday.

Dove.  Too many novels read.  I always thought the rendezvous was.  Under the clock at Waterloo Station.

In all seriousness though.  It would be nice to meet up wih forum members.

Tattie planting

Posted: 14/02/2014 at 00:33

Just a thought.  Many members have posted much about seed sowing etc.  Thank you.  I have also noticed that several have mentioned that their spuds are sprouting, 'chitting'.  So folks.  When it comes to the actual planting.  How do you go about it?  OK some have large gardens, others have allottments.  I wonder.  Having dug over and prepared the plot.  Do you ridge up and then plant each spud in a hole, or do you plant following preparation, the spuds.  Then gradually ridge up as growth develops.


Posted: 13/02/2014 at 23:43

Oh dear!    probably the first thought is too much water.  However there are other matters to look at.  OK.  Acid soil...ticked.   Four years old. with many flower buds.  Lucky you.  or perhaps did you mean.  A potted rhodo that you have owned for four years.  Please believe me. Owning and ageing  are quite different.  As a member has commented.  Yes, sometimes leaves will tend to point down.  They should actually according the general standard, be more horizontal.  Check that the pot is slightly raised off the ground.  Also that it is getting sufficient light.  Without furer ramblings.  I would suggest that your plant is a wee bit older than four, and that it is time to pot it on.  Although some shrubs look nice in tubs and pots.  The rhododenron is a suface rooter.  I feel that your subject wants, needs to spread it's roots.  Give it a try.

St John's Wort

Posted: 13/02/2014 at 22:57

Hypericum is a fantastic homeopathic remedy.  Great for treating damaged nerves.  As a post operative, it is actually better than morphine for easing pain.  For anyone who hates dentist, and perhaps has the occassional toothache.  Hypericum is fantastic.

Rhodo vs Azalea

Posted: 13/02/2014 at 22:47

Sunnylou.  You are absolutely correct.  The powers that be do tend to complicate matters, more often than not.

Not only subjects as rhodo's but also so many everyday perenials as well.

Rhodo vs Azalea

Posted: 13/02/2014 at 22:45



Yes, I remember.  Over the years there have been severaltv gardeners who obviously were able to provide us with so much, without always having to have a scriptwriter.


I would love to see some of those programs again.

St John's Wort

Posted: 13/02/2014 at 00:50


No probs. Each to their own.  Best wishes.

Unwanted visitor

Posted: 13/02/2014 at 00:08

Perhaps I have already posted on other threads relating to cats.


Believe me.  I love all forms of animal life.  However, in all my years in horticulture, I have never come upon so many complaints, problems relating to cats.  However I feel that it is high time some lawful action was  taken.  That is.  If it can!  Recently I removed some fungi from my garden, thanks to imported top soil.  Wowee!  What's that stink? No fibs. I can look out of my front windows, and watch cats from down the road, boldly marching to Mikes garden.  Forgive the bluntness.  In they come scratch a hollow, dump their load,  attempt to cover it up and the bye your leave swankly P*** off again.  I can only assume tha my garden is the best in the road.  But like you lot.  What can we do?.  The law does not protect cats in the same way as it does other animals.  To go out and spend fortunes on canisters of so-called cat repellant.  BH, with all this rain.  A weeks housekeeping can go on the stuff.  So folks.  What really can we do.  Gather up the deposits and knock on the owners door and say.  Hi.  Your cat left this in my garden.

Clematis Montana

Posted: 12/02/2014 at 23:49

Ah Little Garden Gnome.  Hello and welcome.  Mike is also registered disabled, so I can well understand some of your feelings.  Don't fret.  All of us on the forum are only too pleased to help.

Firstly, it is a big mistake of the majority of us who grow clematis.  Even I.  The dreaded Surgeon of horticulture, tend to leave the clematis out of the cutting back program.  To be honest.  I was taking stock of my clematis just the other day.  Oh! what a tangled mess.  In regards to youngish plants, the idea is to cut back almost to ground level.  For more mature subjects, especially if you have trained yours to cover a fence or wall.  Then by this time you probably have several main stems, or trunks.  In this case, take your time or seek help.  Working outward from each main stem.  Check for signs of fresh buds etc.  Cut back to three or four buds.  When completed your clematis will look quite naked, but you will be able to forsee next seasons growth.  Believe me.  You won't be dissappointed.


Problem if left.  Clematis as with so many climbers.  New growth will start on the outside.  As with Lonicera.  You end up with a bird cage effect.  Masses of dead undergrowth.  Given time the plant will take over your garden.


Hope this helps.

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