Latest posts by Obelixx

Gardeners' World

Posted: 12/03/2017 at 22:13

Percy Thrower far too "Chemical Ali" for me but Geoffrey Smith was wonderful.

Ultimate Alphabet 'R'

Posted: 12/03/2017 at 20:20

Well, we've already had reindeer and raccoon and rearing horse and R so maybe a bird specialist  could eliminate some?

Would less invasive wisteria be okay for this arbour?

Posted: 12/03/2017 at 16:04

I have never heard of a "less vigorous wisteria" and, to keep them flowering, they need pruning twice a year and training in to their supports.  They also do best in full sun.  See here for mor einfo from the RHS - https://www.rhs.org.uk/advice/profile?PID=173

On the other hand, there are roses and clematis and honeysuckle which don't need full sun and will do well in partially shaded areas or dappled shade.   There are now several rambling roses available that will give repeat flowering as long as you remember to dead head regularly - not exactly strenuous or time-consuming.

First things first, get you arbour painted as that will take some time but will look stunning when done.   Then prepare the soil for planting your chosen climbers.  You'll have plenty of time to select varieties while waiting for the paint to dry.........

Are Green Thumb right about this lawn?

Posted: 12/03/2017 at 15:56

It's lovely Yvie and really sets off your new beds and all their curves really well.

BulbsBay - why not have a go yourself?   Or are you really time poor?

If not, the first thing to do is to get in with a good gardening fork and use it to make vertical holes at frequent intervals working all along and across the grass.  Stand on it so the tines go in deep and then wiggle it back and forth to enlarge the holes.   Then you need to pour on bags of sharp sand - not wet builders' sand - and brush it across the lawn to fill those holes.  This will provide air to teh roots and allow better drainage.

By the time you've done that it should be mid April which wis a perfect time to apply a spring weed, feed and moss treatment.  Follow the instructions on the pack and be prepared for parts of your lawn to turn black after a week or so.   Buy or hire a scarifier and use this to rake up all teh dead stuff and any loose stuff from previous cuttings (thatch).   Alternatively, rake it up witha  spring tined fork - see Wolf tool heads.

Loosen any bare earth with a normal rake head then sow appropriate grass seed to fill the gaps.  Water with a sprinkler or gentle hose pipe spray if it doesn't rain.   Do not walk on the newly sown areas.

Leave it to grow to at least 2 inches before its first cut and then never cut it shorter than one inch as this allows enough leaf to feed and maintain healthy roots and thus compete better for nutrients against any weeds.

Apply an autumn weed and feed in September

Repeat as necessary over the coming years.

Last edited: 12 March 2017 15:56:37

Salvia hot lips

Posted: 12/03/2017 at 15:39

I have these and other shrubby salvias which needed to be kept in teh greenhouse over winter.  Even so, their top growth would all die back but once the weather warmed up I'd get new shoots from the crown and would then cut right back to those.

I now have them outside but in a sheltered spot and they are just starting to shoot near the base.  I shall leave the tops on for a while to take any frosts that may still come and then, as before, cut them right back down to the healthy new growth.

In other words, as long as you can keep th enew buds sheltered from frosts till mid May, you can cut yours back as hard as you need to keep them to size.  Feed with a mix for roses or tomatoes to encourage flowers rather than foliage.

Ultimate Alphabet 'R'

Posted: 12/03/2017 at 15:35

Anyone want to work their way thru this lot - http://thewebsiteofeverything.com/animals/birds/beginning-with/R

Ultimate Alphabet 'R'

Posted: 12/03/2017 at 15:17

Can't identify all the fish but have found a list of 63 common names beginning with R so consider the fish done.

Bindweed growing through fence (from site above)

Posted: 12/03/2017 at 13:30

All you can really do is to keep spraying or painting on the glyphosate si it can take the poison back to the roots and weaken it but without action on the other side, there's not a lot you can do to stop it.

It may be worth asking around to see if anyone knows if the owners are just uncaring or maybe too infirm/busy/ignorant to do anything.  Then you can judge whether or not it's worth asking permission to go and treat it on their side.  I suspect their neighbours to either side might be happy to help as they've probably got the same problem.


Posted: 12/03/2017 at 13:06

Wear comfy shoes and make sure you have layers of clothes and a backpack to keep them in if not needed because you can get biting cold winds off the North Sea and showers and hot sun.  I've had all 3.   

Get there early to enjoy it before the coach trips arrive and make sure you camera battery is fully charged and your memory cleared.  It is exceedingly photogenic.

Keep a close eye on your credit card.  The gardens are a display/shop front for Dutch bulb growers who have little chalets full of catalogues to tempt you to order on the spot.   Better to make a not of what you like and their online address and order form the calm of your home.

This was it in 2007.  The displays change each year to showcase new varieties and new combinations.


Last edited: 12 March 2017 13:07:19

Gardeners' World

Posted: 12/03/2017 at 13:01

Polish Spirit is indeed a group 3.   If in doubt about your others, you can check them on this database run by Hull University - http://www.clematis.hull.ac.uk/new-clemlistsearch.cfm 

I had group 2s in my Belgian garden but their top growth was always hammered by cold winters so I just pruned them all like group 3s.    They were fine but it changes their flwoering time to all summer instead of a big flush in May/june followed by a second later on f you remembered to prune and feed them after the first flush.

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