Latest posts by Obelixx

Coping with withdrawal symptoms

Posted: 29/10/2017 at 09:07

FG - I think this is about withdrawal symptoms form GW rather than gardening, unless someone out there really thinks you should only garden when Monty is there to remind you what and when to do!  That's more about BBC schedulers and Monty's contract isn't it?

Certainly for me, gardening only stopped in heavy rains, impossible winds or deep frosts - all of which were usually plentiful in the Belgian garden.  The only thing to stop me here is the lack of rain as this drought continues.   Heavy grey clouds all round today except for us, sitting in a pool of bright sun.

Pruning a young Japanese blossom tree

Posted: 29/10/2017 at 09:02

I would wait till after you've enjoyed all the blossom next spring and then prune the stems which are too long back to just above a leaf joint.   Make sure your secateurs are very clean and very sharp and, if the branch is long, remove half to two thirds of the length before making the final cut to help avoid splitting the bark and making an open wound.

It is tempting to do it when the tree is bare so you can see the shape more easily but, in fact, prunus trees are prone to a disease called silver leaf if pruned in winter so wait and do it between May and July.

Hello Forkers.....It's October!

Posted: 29/10/2017 at 08:56

There are advantages to being a small, nuclear family.  Limits the C shopping and, in any case, as OH and I have birthdays quite close we don't go overboard at Xmas.   We did go thru a phase of challenging ourselves to £10 for each other's prezzie Xmas and having a lovely, non-turkey feast with good wines.  It's been all about Possum for the last 20 odd years.

Bit of an itchy night again so I'm up late but on parade now to make chilli jam and preserve some quinces.

Hope you both enjoy your days Chicky and Busy.   I'd enjoy a long stroll along Portobello Rd too but am not interested in cuddling grandbabies just yet tho I cans see the appeal.

I hope your skinks are OK Pat and that you get your hill FG.   Be firm Hosta.  Chin up PDoc.  We're all rooting for you here.  Hi Joyce and Dove and everyone else who pops in.

Hello Forkers.....It's October!

Posted: 28/10/2017 at 23:19

Funnily enough one of the chaps yesterday was saying how amazing it is that National Trust properties like Sissinghurst - visited as a group by my new garden club - have volunteers who go and weed and prune.   Clearly not yet in the French psyche to look after one's heritage.   People in my former Belgian area are also deploring the state of their cemeteries and lack of maintenance by the local council.

How hard can it be to get together and organise a neighbourhood weed team?  

Mahogany seedlings

Posted: 28/10/2017 at 17:45

The real mahoganies all come from the swietenia species native to the Americas tho there are trees given that name in India, Ceylon, South Africa but of the khaya or other species.  You need to identify the correct botanical name for yours then google "name+cultivation" to see what soil it likes, whether it needs acidic conditions, how tender it is and what size it will eventually grow to.

I suspect that you will have to Bonsai them to keep them in the UK so you can bring them in out of frosts.

Coping with withdrawal symptoms

Posted: 28/10/2017 at 17:40

There's original!! 

Geoff Hamilton did a series on how to make/build/plant a paradise garden.  he built 2 - one on a budget for ordinary folk and one more elaborate and with fancier materials for those with deeper pockets.  You can still buy the DVD's and the books often turn up in charity shops.  Excellent value, especially the DVD which comes with the Cottage Garden series and the ornamental Kitchen Garden series.   Wonderful stuff.

I suspect Monty's version will be another tour round other people's gardens.

New topsoil is like cake mix

Posted: 28/10/2017 at 17:36

I agree.  You seem to have done very thorough preps and just been defeated by bad weather.   

Leave it now till spring when increasing sunshine will evaporate excess moisture and grass will get away faster.  Try sowing seed instead of laying turves.  It'll be cheaper and, since you can't walk on new turves for a few weeks anyway and they need copious watering, it'll probably be just as quick to sow seed suited to your soil.

The one consolation is that clay is really very fertile and does improve if you can add plenty of organic matter as a mulch on beds every autumn.  There are also plenty of plants that love clay and moisture retentive soils and will look great offset by your lawn when you do finally get one.

Hello Forkers.....It's October!

Posted: 28/10/2017 at 15:55

Hello Forkers.....It's October!

Posted: 28/10/2017 at 15:48

Clear blue skies here now and warm sun but a teeny draught.  Have just got home from fetching my camera, picking up some haberdashery I need for my next project, shopping for milk and stuff - have treated OH to some andouillettes he can eat while I'm away next week - and queued ages for more cortisone based anti-itch.  They've run out!

Got home to two very excited doggies leaping around like puppies - not helpful when trying to drive in and park car - plus a roly-poly Minstrel who is now grey from the gravel dust.  Good job she likes being brushed.

Hope all has gone well for Liri's OH.   LP - dogs, cats and babies and, no doubt, any hens will not know the clock has changed.   Silly business.  Doesn't make any extra daylight, just changes when we have it.  I'd rather have longer evenings than lighter mornings tho.

Hello Forkers.....It's October!

Posted: 28/10/2017 at 11:40

Loathe Little Women in book and film - so flipping preachy - but loved the Glenn Miller story and, of course, the music.

The late Duchess of Devonshire was a Mitford so bound to be quirky but she did do a very good job of making Chatsworth a working enterprise.  Well done her.  

Coat/jacket done except for button sewing.  Lunch next and then I have to go and fetch my camera that I left in Isabelle's car yesterday and then a hunt for more anti-itch cream.

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