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Mummy Muddy Paws


Latest posts by Mummy Muddy Paws

greenhouse?

Posted: 08/05/2013 at 00:12

Don't really know if you can get an off-the-shelf greenhouse that's that size, you can get one made to measure, but like anything bespoke it'll be expensive.

As a stopgap, I'd visit a caravan shop, and see if you can get a small storm strap - these go over the top of a caravan awning, and are designed to stop caravan awnings blowing away in windy areas, these will probably cost more than the plastic greenhouses did though!  Could you not get something like a big bamboo in a pot (for heaven's sake, don't put it in the ground), and use that as a windbreak?

An alternative would be to ask your neighbour if s/he minds you putting a lean-to greenhouse there?  I'm sure that some home-grown tomatoes every year, and a couple of peppers/cucumbers may help persuade them!

Does anyone else..........

Posted: 07/05/2013 at 17:47

Am I the only person that does this?  Remembering my biology lessons and things having a greater surface area being more efficient (just think surface area of lungs).  Things will obviously rot down quicker if they are chopped up, I'd like to know I'm not bonkers because I roughly chop things like cabbage leaves and broccoli stalks.

I'm probably certifiable in other things I do, I'd just like to know this is one area of my life where I'm relatively sane.

My ambition in life is to have enough money when I'm older to be regarded as 'eccentric'.  Not just poor and plain loony.

Prposed EC legislation to restrict availability of our seeds

Posted: 07/05/2013 at 17:35

Don't want to get political, as this isn't the place for it, however, given the results in the local elections recently, plus the promise of a referendum were the conservatives to get into power, we might not be in the EEC for too much longer.  There appears to be a move, even with some senior politicians, to appear to be anti-europe in order to curry favour with voters.

Will be interesting to see if we get the referendum we were promised (I live in Sheffield so remember Nick Clegg promising not to increase tuition fees!), and to see if Joe Public is as fed up of daft EEC meddling as we're supposed to be.

MOB rants

Posted: 07/05/2013 at 17:14

Heavens, don't start me on the local tip.  Ours is great, but the chaps in there are a bit too eager to help - my new pushchair nearly went in one of the recycling bins, until I shouted at the guy to put it back, I was getting it out of the boot to get at the other stuff that needed to go, think he thought he could get a few quid out of it as it looked new (because it was new).

Our local council will not allow us into the tip with either a van or a trailer, we have to get a permit from the council to take a trailer or van in, and then it's only allowed in once a month, and we have to pre-book the day before.

The neighbouring council don't really care if you turn up with a dump truck full of stuff, but that's 20 minutes away, and the local one is only 5 minutes.  The guys there are like vultures, anything they can ebay or car boot gets snaffled, I'm sure it's a great way of topping up their income.

Apart from someone mentioning the tip, I've been quite happy this weekend, I actually managed to get to the GC this weekend and spend my money (mostly on stuff I wanted), got myself the very nasty looking wolf cultiweeder (hopefully it will stop me having to bend to grab lengths of bramble), and will be useful when I finally get the bottom garden sorted for veggies.  I also managed to get some fungicide to treat the black spot on my roses, and OH got a tap fitting to go on one of his oil drums for making the biodiesel.  We all had an ice-cream too (next time I will do the choosing, as OH has no idea how messy a toddler can get with anything bigger than a mini-milk!)  Came to slightly over £30, so OH paid the excess (it did mean he got his tap for half-price though).

Please help me design my garden - part 3

Posted: 05/05/2013 at 16:09

If all you want to do is cover the fence, maybe something like Ivy (although this can be a bit of a thug, so be sure this is what you want).  Another climber like honeysuckle or jasmine, or even a clematis would be nice - you need to be careful with honeysuckle as it will form berries that look tasty but are poisonous.

Like Matty says, you need to dig lots of goodness back into the border, well rotted manure, compost, spent compost from hanging baskets etc, as conifers do suck all the goodness out of the soil.

Places like the pound shop, Aldi, Lidl, poundstretcher are really good for cheap plants and equipment, sometimes you need to be there on the day things are delivered to ensure you get what you want (and that it's in decent condition).  I find that the shopping channels can be expensive.  The co-op was doing bedding plants last week, 2.50 for a tray of six, buy one get one free (so 12 plants for 2.50), sweet peas, marigolds, sweet william, snapdragons (and something else I can't remember - pansies maybe).

You could concentrate on getting the soil right this year, and buy some dwarf fruit trees in the autumn or next spring, it's a bit late to get them now (in spring Aldi was selling fruit trees for 3.99 each, a fraction of what they cost from the garden centre or by post.  I also subscribe to the suttons and t & m e-mails, as sometimes they have offers on that would be rude to refuse - just rembember to add another £5 for p&p!

Keep an eye out at your local supermarket, sometimes they have offers on too.  You will soon learn where to look for bargains!  I only use the garden centre if there's something specific I want.  Blooming direct is also brilliant for decent sized bedding plants, and you can choose the week you want them delivered.

Please help me design my garden - part 1

Posted: 05/05/2013 at 15:56

You must teach your little ones that nothing, I mean nothing, from the garden must go in their mouth.  My 4 year old understands this, my two year old does not. 

You could try things like red-hot poker, delphniums, hollyhocks etc at the back of the border - I wouldn't plant lupins, as the seed pods contain very shiny black seeds that might be mistaken for berries by little ones.  Things like scented pinks, ground cover lillies, snapdragons etc can go at the front of the border.

I've not read the rest of your posts, one thing I would say is if you have little ones, now is the time to start teaching them about food.  You could get a trough planter and put things in there that are quick to come up, like radishes, spring onions, resistafly carrots and lettuces - then they've made their own salad (and if they've grown it themselves, they're more likely to eat it, if you have fussy eaters).  Strawberries can be grown very successfully in stackapots or hanging baskets, so can outdoor tumbling tomatoes, if doing these you need to get on with it pronto, tomatoes should really have been sown last month, but you should have enough time provided they get sown in the next couple of weeks, or you could buy some small tomato plants from a nursery or GC.

This year I am growing Pumpkins with my little ones, as the one I bought last year for halloween was a big hit, we kept it for over a week (it started going funky so we had to throw it out).

Just be very careful that you don't grow anything too toxic in case your little ones aren't old enough to understand the dangers.

Another top tip (one I passed on last Friday), is if you have a trampoline, instead of putting it up over grass, cover the ground with weed-supressing membrane and then cover it with bark chippings, you will get fed up of hauling a trampoline around in order to mow underneath it!

MOB rants

Posted: 04/05/2013 at 13:44

I just hope they last a few years longer, I don't think I could cope with toddlers and Mum who has lots of health issues at the same time!!

Mum has also said that she wants to outlive my biological father, just so she can go and spit on his grave.  Don't blame her for that at all, he is not a nice person (he did threaten to shove my teeth down the back of my throat when he thought I had stolen his wallet - I was four years old at the time).  If anyone threatened to do that to either of my children, I think I would be up in court for Murder.  Karma is well at work though, my eldest sister is just about the only one who bothers to visit him, and he has a full-time carer as he has demensia. 

One of my best friends had a childhood that makes mine seem idyllic - her Dad left when she was 4 and her sister a baby, and her Mum was a Paranoid Schizophrenic.  Social services were non-existent in those days, some days she'd have to sort out herself and her sister after a beating, her Dad would come around regularly and assault her Mum, and she'd have to sort out her Mum, too.  When her sister started nursery, she was permanently catatonic - no-one picked this up.  No one questioned why the two of them were covered in bruises, and regularly off when the bruises were too bad for one or the other to go into school.  My friend left when she was 17, she got pregnant by her boyfriend at the time, they tried to force her to have an abortion, but being a good catholic girl, she refused, and instead was forced to marry the boyfriend (the marriage lasted 8 years, as the boyfriend inflicted the beatings she got from her Mum).  She's now happy, the baby she had at 18 has been to university and has a good job with prospects, and Husband number 2 has immense respect and love for his wife (he's been told that if he pulls stunts like number 1 did he'll have a number of friends to answer to!!)

The upshot of all of this, is I understood where she was coming from when she found out her Mum was dying.  She didn't go and see her, and breathed a massive sigh of relief when she finally passed away.  When she went to sort out her flat, she found exercise books full of her Mum's rantings, what she was going to do to her two girls if she ever found them, what she was going to do to my friend's daugher etc.  Most of it was burned in a big bonfire.  She is an amazing person, and how she managed to emerge functioning as she did is not far short of a miracle.  My daughter's second name is the same as my friend, as if my daughter is half as beautiful, happy and clever as my friend, she will be a lucky girl.

The more I see of what people will do to each other, the more I love my dog.

MOB rants

Posted: 03/05/2013 at 22:46

GG, I am number two daughter.  Number one daughter is 11 years older than I am, number one son is 9 years older than I am, and number three daughter is 4 years younger than me.  Number one son only just started talking to Mum after 25 years, number three daughter was talking to Mum and now isn't for some bizarre reason none of us can figure out.  I am in sporadic contact with number one daughter, and tend to ignore number 3 daughter, as the stuff she posts on facebook would be better off on the Jeremy Kyle show.

Me?  I've been accused of being stuck-up, sensible, utterly certifiable, using language that would make a navvy blush, and joined-up thinking.  I will leave you to draw your own conclusions.

As for Mum, she is one of my best friends, and I don't like to see bad things happening to my friends, so would not want to see her in a home.  When asked what she would do if it was my stepdad outlives my Mum (which is likely, as he is 5 years younger than she is, and doesn't have as much going wrong physically), she just said 'don't be a stranger'.  I told him that our door is always open and I would be most offended if he didn't show up every year at Christmastime, and if he needed full-time care then it would be up to him if he would prefer to see out his days at home or in a home.

Mum's genes must be working REALLY hard to counteract my biological father's dodgy DNA.

MOB rants

Posted: 03/05/2013 at 18:00

Yes, it was meant as a joke!  They have both worked very hard for their money, and I hope they manage to spend it all before they shuffle off the mortal coil, but not so much that they have to worry about everyday things (if you know what I mean), I'm worrried that when I get old I'll worry about putting the fire on when it's cold, I am very nesh.  Mum is terrified that she'll get put into a home if anything happens to Ian (my stepdad), and asked both me and my sister what we'd do if anything did happen.  My sister replied 'well, if anything did happen, you'd have to come here until we find you somewhere suitable'.  Meaning that she'd take my Mum in, con her out of all of her money, then put her in a home.  When she asked me, I said we'd have to scrape some money together from somewhere so we could build an extension so she could come and live with us (Mum would not do solitary very well), we even discussed putting in a baby monitor in her room in case she had a diabetic hypo in her sleep.  When she asked my Husband, he said he was in total agreement with me, as we had both helped to look after his Dad when he was terminally ill, parents are precious, as are children.  It's very strange that even though we're sisters, my older sister cares more about money than she does about people - when my parents got divorced, she even 'hid' some of my biological father's money so Mum didn't get as much - for a percentage.  Shocking.

Honeysuckle another plant with voucher

Posted: 03/05/2013 at 17:46

I love climbing roses, I have the white feather and it was covered in flowers last year.  I also have blue moon, and that didn't even bother to show a bud last year.  I always try to enter any competitions for garden related stuff (and some other stuff, too), I had my first major win, ever last week, I won a 32 inch telly!

It's a great feeling when you win something, especially if it's something you really want but can't really afford or justify.  I bet you hang onto that last voucher until you see something you really want!

Why don't you take some before and after shots when you put the roses in, and see if you can't get some vouchers from GW magazine as well?  That would be fab.  Also you can get free plants with your clubcard vouchers if you collect clubcard points.

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