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Mummy Muddy Paws


Latest posts by Mummy Muddy Paws

woolly aphid on crab apple tree

Posted: 03/05/2013 at 17:37

Berghill, I only recommended pyrethrum as I had it recommended to me by a company that sells organic products, I was under the impression that pyrethrum was made from peppers and therefore safe to use.  If it is toxic to bees, why is it being marketed by a company that is supposedly organic?  If it has the same properties as the neonicotinoids, I won't be using it any more, can you suggest something I can use on it that IS safe for bees?  Whenever I apply any insecticide, I always do it at dusk, when most of the pollinators aren't out, I know that neonicotinoids make the entire plant toxic, so don't buy anything that has it in (generally anything that ends in 'cloprid').

Basically, can anyone recommend an insecticide that WON'T harm bees?

MOB rants

Posted: 03/05/2013 at 17:22

FG, was little one's second birthday on Monday, we're having the cake tonight

TT, If it has wheels and an engine, I can say No all I want and he won't take a blind bit of notice - he probably would if it was one of our cars, but as neither of us has bank of Mum and Dad (OH's are no longer with us, mine are in Spain spending my inheritance!), he borrowed quite a bit of money from his sister, and he thinks if he doesn't fix the car, then her OH will want to go out and buy a new one, so will start pestering us for the money back, when he knows full well we haven't got it.  He doesn't work (never really has), and is supported by OH's sister, which is one of the reasons why I don't have a very high opinion of him, he's one of those people that if you have a cold, he has flu, he tried to make out he had the same as I did, so I challenged him to go and get it diagnosed properly, the same things I had to go through, so we're still waiting for that.  His philosophy is, if you can get someone else to do it, then that's OK by him.  I don't think he's heard of self respect, he runs a mile if there's any graft to be done.  They need a soakaway digging in their front because their land rover is making a mess of the front garden.  His sister can't do it, because she has back problems, her OH won't do it as he's a waste of organs, I can't do it because he won't look after my little ones whilst I do the digging (yes, I know!), so it will have to be MY OH that does it.  Some people seem quite happy sponging and commenting on those doing the hard work.  heigh Ho, I'm sure Karma will come around and sort him out one day.  Just hope I'm there when it does!!

Honeysuckle another plant with voucher

Posted: 03/05/2013 at 11:46

Scotkat, did you get a letter published?  I keep getting my thrifty tips published, the vouchers are a godsend!

I agree spent wisely they can go a long way, and mine are always saved up until I have enough vouchers or vouchers and money for something I really need.  Excited as I've now got enough for a cultiweeder and a bit left over for bedding or something!

MOB rants

Posted: 03/05/2013 at 11:43

Do you think I could do boot sales with my brambles?  I'd make a fortune!

The sun is out, my voucher arrived yesterday, and now I have enough money for a wolf cultiweeder, and during my mammoth clearing up session yesterday I unearthed two buckets of plaster my OH has bought and forgotten about, so it looks like things may be looking up.  Now all I need to do is win the lotto and I can stay at home and just worry about my little ones until the littlest one starts school (September next year).

Only blot on the horizon now is Sister-in-Law's land rover has blown it's fuel pump (quite literally), so OH will be using that as an excuse to play with cars all weekend instead of chucking plaster at the wall, then come home in a bad mood as brother in law is as useful as a chocolate fireguard and as lazy as a cat, so will be no help with the car (he doesn't know his mole grips from his water pump pliers).  He complains about the car no end, but doesn't lift a finger to keep it on the road, drives it like an idiot (starts a 2.5 litre diesel engine to drive son to school, so engine doesn't get warm), he lives just down the road from us, and I walk my two to school every day, come rain or shine.

Sorry, was in a positive mood and it's turned into a rant against people that are lazy and don't appreciate what other people do for them!

woolly aphid on crab apple tree

Posted: 03/05/2013 at 11:31

These are a real nuisance, I have them on a blackthorn hedge, it's made such a mess of it, I am considering replacing it (although I am loath to do so, as it's home to nesting sparrows every spring).  I have been advised that the organic way to do it is use pyrethrum spray (made from peppers, I believe), to try to control the infestation, and then keep it under control with ladybirds (the larvae apparently love ANY kind of aphid).  It hasn't got rid of them completely, but it's better than it was last year.

We don't have any kind of tits in the garden - the sparrows and the very territorial blackbird chase them away, I was very excited to see a blue tit on my bird feeder the other day, until the sparrows ganged up on him.  They nest in the hedge, but don't do me the favour of eating the damn things!

Slugs may destroy my life

Posted: 03/05/2013 at 11:25

Killing slugs is very satisfying.  I didn't realise how satisfying until I started gardening, I thought gardening was a restful pastime (and it is by and large), but you get garden envy, and a pathological urge to kill slugs and snails (or is that just me?).  Barriers are very good, they don't like getting their tummies lacerated by gravel, it does need to be quite a wide barrier though as some of them will arch over it if they can to get to tasty plants.  My weeding knife is never very far away, and I chop them in half whenever I come across them.  One thing that has been recommended on here is a length of guttering upside down (making a nice dark cool place for slugs to shelter during the daytime), pop outside before you go to work, and either scrape them off into a bucket of salty water, or chop in half and leave as a buffet for the birds.

Don't give up on your dahlias.  Get a nice big pot, copper tape around the bottom and top, may have to put a double ring around it if you've got mahoosive slugs, it gives them a nasty electric shock (something to do with a reaction between copper and their slime), and stand the pots on a wide, deep bed of the scratchiest gravel you can find, that should help.

This is a great place to share gardening triumphs and tragedies, slug threads always get quite lively, after all, where slugs are concerned, it is WAR!

KBO.

Planting Oriental and Regale lilies

Posted: 03/05/2013 at 11:15

Verdun, you're getting cheeky again, do I need to threaten naughty chair time??

Happycottontail, you will find that slugs LOVE lily bulbs, so even in pots I put compost in to the level where you're going to plant them, and then put some sharp sand in around the bulb, then compost on top again, this will help deter slugs.  Copper bands around the top of the pot will also help stop the little critters.

Lilies like to have their roots in shade and their heads in the sun, so make sure that the pots aren't in full sun, as this will make them sulk - you could move them to somewhere in a border with bedding plants in front of the pots, perhaps, and see if you are happy with the effect (this will give you an idea if they 'work' where you're thinking of putting them, too), if not you can always move the pot until you're happy with it.

Keep your eyes open for the dreaded lily beetle, bright red, squash on sight, and look underneath for eggs (bright red also), the grubs are horrible beasties that cover themselves in their own poo for camoflage, and will do untold damage to the lily.

spam issues

Posted: 03/05/2013 at 11:07

For end-users, the rate of change can seem glacial - I have worked in IT and trust me, there will be a lot of late nights, hard work and a little bit of swearing (not always at the computer!) going on behind the scenes.  Someone will have had a jolly good spanking at not testing the upgrades properly, too - ranging from sacking, demotion, to a telling off and a testing training course prescribed.

It's nice to see that the reply is in normal-sized text as I'm typing, so there is progress (although it may seem slow to lots of other folk, I'm quite impressed as to how quickly the issues are being addressed, it's not as though this forum is making money for GW!  Had it been a shop front, someone would definitely have been sent packing, and the thing sorted much quicker.

A very good idea to ignore the spam about kitchens and other rubbish.  Times are hard for a lot of people, if they think they can make a quick buck there are some things people won't think twice about, spam is just irritating.

best way to get rid of rats

Posted: 02/05/2013 at 11:09

I don't think they do rat-sized ones, but I have a couple of electric mouse traps, the mouse goes inside (it can't get back out as it has baffles in there), as soon as it steps on the metal bit to get the bait, pfzzzzz, mouse is dead, and triggers a red flashing light to let you know the deed has been done.  Pick up with a carrier bag, invert trap and flip the  lid open, the corpse will drop into the bag.  knot the bag, put it in another bag, and it can go into household waste.

I have to do this, my husband is too big a wuss to do it.  I don't like the ordinary spring traps, if they don't snap over the mouse's head, they can get a leg and then it's a slow death - unless you draw the short straw and use a housebrick to put it out of it's misery (speaking from horrible experience there).  Yes, they are pricey, but well worth it as they're humane, clean and can be used with dogs and kids (I have both, and from time to time a mouse problem as I live in a house that's near a farm, the farmer is none to fastidious in his habits (that's a long story that involves environmental health, a pig ban and a chap that lives in the village that does aerial photography for a living!!)

I suppose you can always google electric rat traps to see if they exist, otherwise I'd use the specially designed pre-baited rat boxes, they're sealed so dogs and kids can't get at them.  Was told by the Rentokil man that mice and rats won't share a house, so I suppose I get the lesser of two evils.  I'm sure the farmer at the back has rats and worse.

Best proven seeding compost

Posted: 01/05/2013 at 19:28

Coir pellets and a suitable windowsill propogator.  Excellent germination rates and very good healthy root systems.  Less mess than compost, and no peat content so very 'green'.  I have bought some aldi seed compost this year, next year I will be using the pellets exclusively (maybe not for beans unless I can get some mega-big coir pellets!

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