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Latest posts by Newcastle

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Posted: 23/08/2013 at 14:47

  Nematodes from organic gardening suppliers ae supposed to be good but you have to have the right conditions for them to thrive. Contact insecticide or covering with netting or fleece to keep the butterflies from laying their eggs in the first pace are other options or spraying with liquid soap or hand picking. A jet ofhose water can also help dislodge them ut it needs persistence whatever you try. 

Talkback: Summer berries

Posted: 27/07/2013 at 23:42
Any suggestions about the best way to deal with raspberry beetle please? I saw a reference to traps on this website but no details. Obviously I want to avoid destroying the beneficial insects - any ideas?
David.

Talkback: Growing strawberries

Posted: 05/07/2013 at 16:33
I have tried growing strawberries in a raised bed his year and planting through slits in weed suppressing woven mulch. It seems to help to discourage snails (of which there are a super-abundance this year on my plot) and obviously it helps water retention and controlling the weeds. Not a lot of fruit so far but I live in hope.

Talkback: Growing foxgloves

Posted: 05/07/2013 at 16:23
Mine are growing quite nicely too Kate. The clay soil seems to suit the pretty well. One thing you do have to watch I have found is that you have to watch they don't take over the whole garden as they seed like mad.I am having go at Verbascums for the first time this year although there will probably be no flowers till next year specially in view of the cold and wet Spring. I have found Alliums are helping to give borders some height although I think quite few of the ones I have been raising in containers have succumbed to the cold and the slugs. At least the weather seems to be improving now so hopefully I should get something useful done in what remains of the Summer.
I am debating whether to give up on a veritable clutter of pots with sees sow last year - some my well have rotted over the Winter but even now I am occasionally seeing some green shoots emerging and having to decide whether what I planted has actually germinated or whether I am unlucky and they are simply self-seeded weeds. All part of the excitement I suppose!

Strelitzia

Posted: 13/05/2013 at 19:23

I have over-Wintered three Strelitzia plants (grown from seed last year) in the bathroom and now Spring has arrived there are some brownish blotches on the leaves which I have sprayed with a fungicide. The growing point looks healthy also the stems and the compost is moist but not soggy. I re-potted the plants once they started into growth this Spring.

Does anyone else grow these and have they had similar problems? Any idea what the pest or disease is please? There is no sign of visible insect life that I have noticed.

Edgworthia shubs

Posted: 14/02/2013 at 22:09

I recently bought one of these having admired the plant in a catalogue - the flowers looked really handsome. Apparently it is a Himalayan shrub resists frost well but not if it gets damp, and I am protecting it with genorous layers of hoticultural fleece. Please let me know the area where you garden if you decide to reply. 

Ceanothus

Posted: 14/02/2013 at 21:57

It might be a good plan to strike some cuttings on a regular basis in case of loss. I find the old 7" pot and compost covered by a plastic bag works quite well and they will grow on quite happily on the window ledge. Most hardy shrubs will survive even harsh Winter weather under a couple of layers of horticultural fleece or in a frost free greenhouse (or both). I am trying this with an Edgworthia (delivered about a month ago) but whether this will work remains to be seen in the Spring. It's from the Himalayas so can stand the cold but not the damp and cold like most shrubs as this forms ice on the leaves. Hope you have better luch this year!

Talkback: Couch grass

Posted: 14/02/2013 at 21:45
One option is to use landscape fabric to cover the infectted area and make sure you weight it down well at the edges. It looks unsightly and it does tke some weeks to weaken the weeds but it does work and now would be a good time to start. There is an additional advantage that you can cut cross shaped slits in the fabric and plant throught these into the soil leaving the leaves of the plant you want to grow above the surface and pin down the cut ends around it with bent wire etc. Slugs will want to use it as a refuge of course; slug pellets or regular killing forays by hand recommended.

Talkback: Growing a yew hedge

Posted: 01/02/2013 at 01:08
I started some yew cuttings off last year and am pleased to see some of them have survived the Winter. I would like to experiment with doing some topiary with these as they grow and I have raised some Holly cuttings too with the same idea. It's going to take me a while to do this but like many people these days I am gardening on a budget.
I wrote in some years ago to Christopher Llloyd about his topiary article in The Guardian asking how this was done and he suggested his Father's book (Nathaniel Lloyd)"Garden Craftsmanship in Yew and Box" which is an inspiring read. I can certainly recommend it. David.

Help with creating new border

Posted: 01/02/2013 at 00:54

You might find it easier to use landscape fabric to suppress the grass abd any weeds growing amongst it. Nothing will grow through that and you can cut slits into the fabric and put in shrubs or other plants (provided the soil is warm enough) and they will thus have a head start over the weeds. It is important to tuck the fabric back around the plant you have put in the hole and peg it in place with  pieces of bent wire/ stones etc. Water can get in but plants cannot grow through it.

Covering the area you plan to plant with your new border with polythene can help to warm and dry out the soil to get it ready for seed sowing later. It's certainly cold and wet around this area and seeds will not germinate till the soil warms up.

Chiltern Seeds and Thompson and Morgan sell a great range of hardy annual and shrub seeds, some of which need the frost to break the dormancy so now can bee a good time to sow them and it can be fun to see what comes up. A great advantage is it's also cheaper! 

 

Discussions started by Newcastle

Aeoniums from seed

Succulents 
Replies: 0    Views: 93
Last Post: 26/07/2014 at 11:54

Watsonias from seed

Hardening off seedlings 
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Last Post: 26/07/2014 at 10:49

Talkback: Making Christmas decorations

I was introduced to wreath making for the first time this year by a member of a community group I belong to in Nottingham. I take the point ... 
Replies: 0    Views: 229
Last Post: 28/12/2013 at 00:38

Strelitzia

Strelitza 
Replies: 2    Views: 627
Last Post: 12/12/2014 at 11:18

Edgworthia shubs

Anybody had much experience of growing these? 
Replies: 3    Views: 707
Last Post: 21/12/2013 at 22:56

Bromeliads from seed.

Bromeliads 
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Last Post: 14/09/2012 at 13:36

Pulmonarias - growing from seed.

Pulmonarias practicalities 
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Last Post: 08/03/2012 at 19:21

Talkback: How to create an autumn pot display

 
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Last Post: 07/12/2012 at 21:02

Talkback: RHS Chelsea Flower Show 2009 - companion planting

 
Replies: 13    Views: 1629
Last Post: 15/03/2013 at 09:16
9 threads returned