London (change)
Today 13°C / 9°C
Tomorrow °C / °C


Latest posts by obelixx

Can you get a Bay Plant?

Posted: 20/11/2013 at 12:29

Yes.  Just look around in garden centres although it's probably the wrong end of the season for them.   Some supermarkets have them in their fresh herb section.

The smaller plants can be kept bushy simply by removing leaves as you need them for cooking or you could remove lower leaves and gradually make a pom pom shape and grow more prostrate horizontal herbs such as thyme below.  That's what I've done but I have to bring it in over winter as they freeze to death outside in my winters whether in pots or in the ground.

Baby Memorial Garden

Posted: 19/11/2013 at 17:05

I have a very exposed garden that gets colder than Yourkshire so can recommend a few clematis.  You can check their details - flower, size, pruning group on this site -

Nelly Moser; Rhavarinne, Blue Angel (Blekitny Atholl), Alba Luxurians, Omoshiro, Huldine, Etoile Violette, Little Nell, Princess Diana, Red Ballon, Red Robin, Arabella, Chrystal Fountain.

For perennials, have a look at phlox, echinops, aconitums, phlomis, chelone, hemerocallis, hostas, grasses such as hakonechloa, miscanthus, carex, molinia, asters, physostegia, astilbes, Japanese anemones, peony...

For shrubs, have a look at coloured stemmed cornus such as alba sibirica and Midwinter fire.  They need to be pruned back hard every spring or two to maintain tehir colour so won't get too big.   Consider evergreens such as variegated holly which is slow growing and can be pruned to shape.  

Go and have alook at Harlow Carr for ideas and get a soil test kit so you know whether the soil is acid, neutral or alkaline.  Add plenty of well rotted garden compost or manure too improve fertility and drainage then get planting.  Bit late this year but don't forget bulbs like snowdrops and daffs for early spring colour.


Quick screening fix needed

Posted: 19/11/2013 at 15:13

Rambling Rector is rampant and thorny but not as thorny as Kiftsgate.  I think you should do a bit of research on rose selling sites such as David Austin, Peter beales and Harkness.  You can also ask for advice from them.  I have done this with David Austin in the past.

I'd still go for the liquidambar but would get the old stump removed first.   Save an RR for another situation where he can have free rein over a pergola or trellis or even a wall.  

Friends of mine had one trained to cover a 2 storey house wall and it also grew over a pergola which was 10' high, 12 feet wide and 2 car lengths deep over the entry to their garden.   Like I said, it gets huge and needs a lot of training and support if you don't have a handy conifer or large tree to hold it up.

Quick screening fix needed

Posted: 19/11/2013 at 12:28

beware Mrs G.  Any tree that puts on rapid growth is likley to turn out to be a monster so go for beauty and a bit of patience instead.   Your local GC or nusery might have a liquidambar at a competitive price.   They soon grow if given the right conditions at planting time -


Quick screening fix needed

Posted: 19/11/2013 at 11:25

I would suggest removing as much of the trunk aspossible, especially if it is diseased orrotten.

I would then consider somethink like a liquidambar which will grow tall but not have too wide a spread at the base and will give fabulous foliage colours in spring and autumns and good leaf form in between.   As it matures, you can raise the canopy by removing lower branches if you want to plant beneath it.

Rambling Rector is good but can only ramble high if he has supports.  Otherwise he will swamp neighbouring plants as he's very vigorous.

Garden planting

Posted: 19/11/2013 at 09:54

Most grasses require full sun to do well though some will cope with partial shade.   This one is tall and can take some shade - Carex forms are shorter and can also take some shade.

Have a look at other grasses on the RHS Plant selector site but you'll probably have to find something else for deep shade. 

mystery purple flower (no picture)

Posted: 18/11/2013 at 17:51

Wild is wild whether it's native or not.   The key thing is that the plants are simple rather than double so accessible to insects and have nectar and pollen rather than having been cultivated and bred to sterility.

Talkback: How to make a bird bath

Posted: 18/11/2013 at 09:19

Rats are never far away in tow or country so feeding birds can just make them more visible, especially in cold weather when they become bolder about nicking food in daylight.

I get round the problem by using hanging fat ball and peanut feeders and limiting the amount of loose seed I put down for gorund feeders so it' sgone by night fall.  I've also taken one of those cheap rectangular compost sievs you can buy, stapled some fine net mesh to it to catch small seeds and suspended it from teh same place as the fat balls.  It gets a supply of loose seed every day and most of the ground feeders - except the chaffinches - have adapted to feeding from it.  That means even less spare food for the rats.

I also bung sachets of rat poison down their tunnels when I find them.

hi all from Worcestershire

Posted: 17/11/2013 at 12:31

I think sometimes people here can be a bit too quick to judge.  Here's a link that may reassure the doubters -,76919.msg202054/topicseen.html#new

Good luck Sue.  The sale will be a wrench but I applaud your bravery in making such a  decision.   Have a great time on your trip and make sure your dog has his passport and jabs kept up to date so he can travel safely with you.   If you get to Belgium when it's warmer, there are some good gardens to visit on this site - 


Visiting Wonderful Gardens

Posted: 17/11/2013 at 12:13

First of all it's a great way of relaxing so it's good for body and soul.  Then, of course, ideas of what I do and don't like, plant combinations to copy or inspire, new plants I haven't seen in the flesh before and, if I'm lucky, some goodies from the plant sweetie shop at the end but they don't always have one and some are over-priced or badly cared for.  I was thoroughly disappointed and rather disgusted by the offerings when I went to Sissinghurst but Great Dixter certainly made up for that.    

Discussions started by obelixx

GW 2015

Programme content discussion 
Replies: 46    Views: 1267
Last Post: 16/03/2015 at 18:44

Chelsea photos

Replies: 36    Views: 1514
Last Post: 02/06/2014 at 09:30

Hello Jro - and any other old friends

Catch up chat 
Replies: 3    Views: 701
Last Post: 27/05/2013 at 09:18

Mare's tail

Replies: 3    Views: 918
Last Post: 01/08/2013 at 17:01

Encouraging bats in our gardens

Replies: 23    Views: 1307
Last Post: 26/04/2013 at 21:35

Beechgrove this weekend

Replies: 6    Views: 708
Last Post: 12/04/2013 at 11:05

Weekend 22 March

Chat about plans for the weekend 
Replies: 108    Views: 3885
Last Post: 24/03/2013 at 18:19

Good Morning - 21 March

Replies: 33    Views: 1805
Last Post: 22/03/2013 at 09:57

Choosing chillies

Replies: 3    Views: 1033
Last Post: 23/02/2013 at 18:47

Hanging baskets and window boxes

Replies: 32    Views: 2569
Last Post: 03/03/2013 at 18:12

New shed - any tips?

Replies: 24    Views: 9580
Last Post: 22/02/2015 at 15:50
11 threads returned