Latest posts by obelixx

Who are they???

Posted: 09/01/2016 at 11:43

Choosing the right plants involves knowing the aspect of your garden - which dictates how much sun it gets; the location - exposure to wind, rain, frosts etc; the kind of soil - loamy, clay, sandy, alkaline, acid; and the width and depth of your wall beds.

You also need to decide whether you want permanent plants or seasonal changes.  either way, the soil of compost in the walls will need to be improved every season to maintain nutrients for healthy plants.   You also need to think about how much time you have for pruning, dead-heading, weeding and general maintenance.

If you can supply all this info here we can help.  Photos would be good too.  Use the tree icon to load them.

Alternatively, google for a good plant nursery near you or an independent garden centre (chains don't always have trained staff) and take the info to them and ask for advice on plants.  They'll be happy to advise.


Posted: 09/01/2016 at 10:48

I like topiary but don't want to maintain it year after year so am happy to admire it in other people's gardens.   I restrict myself to keeping "dwarf" conifers tidy and trimmed or hedged.

Yew forms, some conifers with fine needles, lonicera nitida as mentioned above all work well and I suspect other fine leaved evergreens such as sarcococca and some hollies would be good.   Box is the original plant of choice but is now susceptible to a virus which kills it off and is unsightly in the process.

Here is a link to photos taken at Levens Hall, the oldest topiary garden in England I think - http://s211.photobucket.com/user/Obelixx_be/library/1107%20Levens%20Hall?sort=2&page=1  They should help with colours and forms.

Anyone done any gardening today?

Posted: 08/01/2016 at 22:55

SG - sounds like your undergardener needs to be given indoor jobs if he won't help outside - washing up, dusting, vaccing, ironing, cleaning loos - anything that leaves you the time and energy to do outside stuff.   You might find that motivates him to do heavy lifting for you.

Can I plant these out now?

Posted: 08/01/2016 at 16:41

Keep them sheltered and chec regularly.  Pot on in good compost when you see roots at the bottom of the pot as restricted roots can check growth.

Can I plant these out now?

Posted: 08/01/2016 at 11:07

As long as the soil is neither frozen nor water-logged I would go ahead but if your garden is exposed I might consider potting them on in bigger pots and keeping them in a sheltered corner or coldframe.   Winter may yet arrive and freeze their socks.

Out of season growth

Posted: 08/01/2016 at 10:32

Except for the worry about the Chinese curse - May you live in interesting times - in other words lots of challenges and disruptions.

My daffs and primula are behaving normally but I have geranium macrorhizum in flower which is far too early and the hamamellis has already finished.   We've had to bung a bucketloads of compost on the precocious rhubarb shoots and my blueberries are showing fresh buds opening.  

One clem on the north wall has new shoots over 3' long.   That's a signal to go and trim and feed all of them now which is 2 months earlier than normal.

Anyone done any gardening today?

Posted: 08/01/2016 at 10:27

Clear blue and sunny here too.  OH has cleared all the crud I piled up on Tuesday and removed the bits of trellis panel I couldn't shift so we are now clear to cement the posts to firm them up (metposts don't resist winds) and install the new panels but not today.   We're off to hunt for a new sewing machine for me.

I will go and take some cuttings of the purple gooseberries though as it's an auspicious fruit day according to Biofreak's biodynamic calendar.

Anyone done any gardening today?

Posted: 07/01/2016 at 16:58

It has turned colder and persisted down nearly all day so, apart from feeding the birds and taking no 1 dog for her bi-monthly haircut, I have stayed indoors and mulled over plans for garden projects this year.   Too cold and dark here for seed sowing yet.

I'm hoping it will be drier tomorrow so I can get OH out there to start to tackle the trellis.  It's his first week of retirement and he has to be eased gently into his new roll as full time undergardener plus we both have to be fit for dance class tomorrow night.

Root Trainers

Posted: 07/01/2016 at 11:45

I'm told they're very good so yes, go ahead.  Freebies have to be good.

Personally, I use loo roll centres as I couldn't find root trainers here until recently.   They biodegrade so I can just plant the whole thing - no root disturbance - and don't have to fuss about paying for, or cleaning and storing the plastic version in between uses.

Strictly is back!

Posted: 06/01/2016 at 16:01

If you're due a new TV soon it'll probably be one you can hang on a wall so think about that before buying a new TV table.   having said that, I ejected the ghastly glass and silver thing that OH bought with the TV before this one as soon as I could.  The current TV is "hangable" but is perched on an oak sideboard as that suits us better.

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