Latest posts by Obelixx

Smoke Bush

Posted: 09/02/2017 at 10:59

How big is the pot?  What compost did you use?  Do you keep it watered and fed?  Is the plant looking healthy otherwise apart form the lack of growth?

I suspect it's worth hoiking out of its pot - after first giving it a good soaking - then checking the roots for little maggoty things that may be eating them.  If there are, pick them out and feed them to the birds.  Either way, you need to tease out the remaining roots so they don't keep going round and round then re-pot with some good John Innes no 3 type compost and water well then treat with a vine weevil solution such as Provavado as insurance.

If your plant is wilting it may be suffering from verticullum wilt, in which case it's probably a goner and needs to be destroyed so it doesn't infect other plants.  The RHS has this advice and info - https://www.rhs.org.uk/advice/profile?PID=255 

Hello Forkers - February 2017 Edition

Posted: 09/02/2017 at 10:52

Cold start this morning and frost about but it's bright and sunny and creeping up to 4C.   This pm we'll wrap up warm  and head to a GC for trays and stuff for my Bishops and then a DIY store to look at fencing panels, railway sleepers and concrete sleepers to try and work out what will be best for our raised bed potager project.  I wonder if we can wangle a bulk discount.

Lovely letter Clari and well deserved.   I hope he can turn his life around and get over his traumas.

Chicky - I haven't had any whiffs from my baby witch hazels but hope it improves next year when they'll be in their permanent home with a bit of a windbreak.

Joyce - I hope you're right and the worst is over.  Pdoc - pulled muscle?  I remember pulling all my stomach muscles during a violent spell of food poisoning.   Beware of stoemp and cold meats anyone heading to Utrecht!

Stay cool Pat.  Autumn will be here before you know it.

Fell asleep watching Loch Lomond but I have it recorded so that's OK.  Very soothing voice over!   Then I woke up and did a bit of knitting but it's impossible with two kittens and a terrier helping so I gave up after 3 rows.    OH parked in the kitchen to watch Leicester win the hard way so is a happy boy today.

Last edited: 09 February 2017 10:52:18

programmes to watch

Posted: 09/02/2017 at 10:40

I thought AT was brilliant when doing his How to be a Gardener series and excellent at presenting Chelsea but I have to admit I don't like his more recent stuff.   The Beeb should never have let him go.  ITV either requires or maybe just indulges emotional manipulation.

Obelisk planting

Posted: 08/02/2017 at 17:32

2m high would be much better.   I wouldn't combine all 3 plants on one obelisk.  It will be overload.  Maybe practise your carpentry skills on an obelisk and then either make a pair or progress to an arch........

There are other designs out there if you google about.  Maybe a pergola so you can grow more plants?

Last edited: 08 February 2017 17:34:21

Hello Forkers - February 2017 Edition

Posted: 08/02/2017 at 16:59

Well.  Not a singe suitable potting pot or tray in my stores.  Will just have to go shopping again tomorrow.   They need to be kitten proofed too.   I've just removed Minstrel from the top shelf of my open pantry racks where she was perched on the Xmas cake and playing with the tin foil wrap.

I even looked in the ruin to see if there was anything I could adapt.  No, but lots of holey bricks for a future insect house and 2 distressed bikes and a solid wood table that I can maybe clean up and do something shabby chic.   

Enjoy yourself Hosta but don't catch a chill.   Dove - yes, tiring but fun and rather liberating.

Raised beds - to treat or not to treat wood?

Posted: 08/02/2017 at 16:53

You'd have to look on the tin but the safest would be water based.   We just used rolls of black plastic sheeting from a builders' yard but you can also find it in good DIYs and garden centres.  Maybe a difference in price so look around.   Thing is, once painted or stained you have to maintain it so maybe just let the wood age and fade naturally if maintenance time is going to be at a premium.

Ours was thicker and stronger than the average bin liner and folded over at the top for neatness then staple gunned to the timbers at what would become soil level.   That way it isn't too unsightly.

Plant a potted clematis

Posted: 08/02/2017 at 15:57

What kind is it and how cold are you at the mo and where have you got your pot?   Sheltered or exposed?

I would make sure the pot it's in is thoroughly watered then give it some feed to encourage new growth and slug pellets to see off the munchers and then plant it out when the ground is neither frozen nor waterlogged and keep up the slug treatment.    You need to prepare a good hole much deeper and wider than the pot and work in plenty of rich compost and/or well rotted manure to improve the soil as clematis are very hungry, thirsty plants.

You should plant it 3 or 4 inches deeper than it was in its pot as this encourages extra shoots and thus more flowers.  Water it well then give it some slow release clematis food and mulch it to help retain moisture.  

Hello Forkers - February 2017 Edition

Posted: 08/02/2017 at 15:38

There have been announcements of French radio about the flu epidemic that has hit hard and early this year and asking people only to go to A&E for real emergencies, to see their pharmacist if they can and to stay at home and not cough and sneeze over everyone else plus regular, thorough washing of hands several times a day and after sneezing or coughing and before meals.   Seems like common sense to me.

I do hope it doesn't get too serious Joyce and everyone else newly suffering and still suffering.

Liri - that sounds like a nightmare.

I have several Bishops and an After Eight to pot up along with some freesias for my cut flower garden.  They arrived this pm from Promesse des Fleurs - ordered Monday evening so very quick service.   We've had to go and do a raid to buy potting and sowing compost so now I can go and play.

Obelisk planting

Posted: 08/02/2017 at 15:27

I think you'll find that 1.5m is really quite small when it comes to providing support for a rose or sweet peas but you could cover it with a clematis that gets to a maximum 3m high if you train it around the structure as horizontally as possible.

You might do better to spend your money on buying some tanalised wood and making a taller and wider obelisk eg - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iqyvgNAM1CI .

Raised beds - to treat or not to treat wood?

Posted: 08/02/2017 at 13:22

The plastic sheeting is just for lining the inside walls of the wooden frames, not the whole bed.  It stops water in the soil from rotting the wood from the inside so your raised beds will last longer.   We did this for raised beds made form old railway sleepers and 18 years later they're still going strong.   We did not treat the tops or outer façades.

If your wood is pressure treated you shouldn't need any extra protection unless you want to paint them for decorative purposes.  You do not want wood preservative products in contact with plants, especially if you intend them for eating.

Last edited: 08 February 2017 13:23:47

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