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Mike Allen

Latest posts by Mike Allen


Posted: 03/03/2014 at 21:52

Well done James.

Actually I subscribe to the RHS forums/blogs.  My post were well liked by other members.  I asked for a blog-site. Sorry  These sites are for helpers and volunteers of the RHS.

Joining this forum.  I requested a blog-site.  Once again. NO!

When checking out the blogs, what do I find.  These in fact are usually set aside for the, 'personalities'  Question.  How often and what do these ones blog about.  Seldom and Nowt.

I was once asked by a subscriber to the RHS forum.  Was I a VMH holder.  Answer NO.  Even though I have been part of the RHS since the early 60's

I wish you well James, with your blog.

Today in the greenhouse.

Posted: 01/03/2014 at 23:53

Brrr.  Outside this morning it was a bit on the chilly side.  Having completed my household chores, and downed a couple of tins of veg/ soup, I ventured out.  Out as far as the greenhouse.  Wow!.  Once again, opening the door, that hypnotic fragrance of Hyacinths.  I locked myself in.   Then I soon realised just how warm it was inside.  A quick check of the Max/Min thermometer.  NO! it can't be,  70 deg. F. The house is unheated.  At the moment.  It resembles more of a warehouse than a green house.  Today my task was to make,set up a shelf arrangement. I have already done such on one side of the house.  This has enabled me to put my alpines up and over.  This has given me more stagging space.  The containers with my lillies have now been removed from beneath the stagging to be placed on top.  Growth of the lilies is advancing fast.  Already the bugs and slugs are having a feast. A few days ago.  I sprayed the whole area with with a liquid slug and snain killer. It really does work. Today I found a couple of junior leopard slugs.  The chemicals had done their job.  Upon removing the victims.  I noticed that, they were crawling alive with microscopice life forms.  I must rememeber to take a look at these under the microscope.

I'd stronly advise all, to keep a constant eye open, in the greenhouse, for tiny slugs and snails and infact for any creepy crawlies.

Anyone dismantled a greenhouse? Easy or not?

Posted: 01/03/2014 at 23:32

To be honest.  Yours truly hasn't read every post on this thread.  So please forgive me if at times I wander a bit.  Firstly.  I just can't understand why in the world, there exist so much annymosity etc between husbands and wives. I lost my mate, coming upto four years ago.  We'd spent fifty years together.  Never a row.  Val always respected me as being the head of the family.  Our two daughters also held that respect.  In all honesty.  Mike so often, cuddled up to Val and said.  Sorry.  Why?.  Simply because I had on many occassions found and realised.  I was wrong. I was chucked onto the scrapheap...workwise, back in 1984.  Thanfully I have survived on my pension etc.  Out vof my 'golden handshake' via HM Gov. I bought a Halls cedarwood green house form a chap.  I am still using it.  To me.  A timber framed structure is far better than a metal framed one.  Now then.  The member asked.  Has anyone dismantled a greenhouse?  YES.


Please follow these instructions.  If  you can.  Take a photo of the structure,  Print it off.  Now working from the ridge. Mark your picture with corresponding numbers that you will also mark on the individual parts. Please take care with the glass.  Never lay panes of glass one on top of the other.  Stack them upright.  If being transported, transport in an upright style.  When reassembling the greenhouse, follow the picture. Good luck.


Posted: 01/03/2014 at 22:19

Hey Lilly.  I bet that got the locals scratching their heads.  ' Well it looks like a lettuce, but I think it might be some foreign plant'  At least you did you bit to help feed the local bunnies.

Clematis plants in containers

Posted: 01/03/2014 at 22:05

Charley D.  I have three roses in two tubs, as I want a quick thick cover.  The roses are.  Zephirine Drouhin.  New Dawn and Rosa Helenei.


Posted: 28/02/2014 at 23:28


When I first read the title of this thread.  I said to myself.  Mike.   Michael old mate steer clear.  Taking on board that I have quite enough physical an other problems of my own.  Then being the nosey b****r that I am, I read on.  So, Wow!  this is one that I haven't come across before.  Yes horticulture is one of the loves of my life.  During my employed years.  I would at xmas time gather all my thoughts, observations of the past growing year together. Then I might spend hours, sketching out and planning.  To me this was simply my time, my devotion as a professional.  Never did I realise that there were others on this planet, who were so totally absessed with 'seeds'.  At least folks. You might have waited until you had sown and enjoyed the flowers etc.  But, 'Seeds'?  I ask you.  Please don't take me seriously.  Not boasting, but  I often say to my kids.  Please don't buy me presents.  Yes I love them, but.  In all honesty.  I find it so hard to express my feelings. In short.  It seems to me that most of the forum members are of the, ' La Femme' type.  Ladies, gents.

With all this seed whatsit?  do you girls ever get to doing the housework, getting the Governors meals etc????????????????????

Since losing my mate Val.  I find myself spending so much time, keeping our tiny flat clean etc, shopping and all the general daily things, that sad to say.  So often my plans to get out in the garden, greenhouse even my workshop. Time where have you gone?  Unfortunately, I only manage tospend around an hour in the garden.  Yet still I often do as much in that hour as some might take a day to do.

To the originator of this thread.  Thank you so much.  Jokeingly.  Now Mike knows who his cranky friends are.


Keep smiling.

Clematis plants in containers

Posted: 28/02/2014 at 22:56


That's them.  I've just popped down to my front door.  I have five all planted up with climbing roses, daffs, hyacinths, polyanthus, cyclamen.  Yes the sizes are the same.  I have no doubts in my mind that they are deep enough for almost anything.  Check out my post relating to shallow rooting etc.  Dont forget.  Provide some protection in the summer regarding keeping the roots cool.  Come the winter, as with all containers.  Wrap them up a bit against penetrating frosts etc.

lithops and cactus

Posted: 28/02/2014 at 22:39

Well done Jonboy.  Enjoy.  However be wise.  Learn the basics and then gradually experiment.  The latter is so exciting at times.  Never be afraid to ask questions.


Best wishes.

Greenhouse Table/Shelving

Posted: 28/02/2014 at 22:28

Mattbeer, I've just had a peek at your profile.  Lucky you, with your garden.

You have certainly come to tghe right place for genuine help and advice.  You ask.....We answer.

  6x4 is a bit of a problem, however.  I would suggest, if you just want bench style stagging.  Utilise just one side of the house.  Work inside the G/H.  Basically four timbers say waist high.  These will be the legs.  Two timbers for the length.  Four corner struts.  Two lower bars to keep the legs rigid.  The top can be slatted or a sheet of external ply.  Nail each corner to the top of the legs and runners.  Cover with plastic sheet.  At the blank end of the house, you can easily construct a framework with removeable shelves.  This will act as your seed tray area etc.

If as I understand.  You are going to build your own greenhouse.  Perhaps part of the bench can be incorporated into the main structure.

All the best.

Clematis plants in containers

Posted: 28/02/2014 at 22:03

Depending upon how handy you are   I'd go for making my own boxes/containers.  I purchesed a number of containers from B&Q when my roses arrived.  Bad weather and nowhere to heel in.  The containers are rectangular about 18-24 inches square tappering down at the base.  Colour dark green or  earthenware.  Cost around 4.50 each.  They will give plenty of root space.  The main point to consider with clematis roots is.  Some are surface rooting, if not shallow rooting.  Protection is called for during hot weather, such as good mulching or even stones or slate top dressing.  Anything to deflect the heat fro reaching the roots.  Remember also.  It is a good idea to cut growth well back in the winter.  This along with well balanced feeding will ensure good strong growth and fine flowers.

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