Latest posts by Obelixx

Clematis Dying?

Posted: 24/07/2016 at 08:52

Rural central Belgium, 30 miles south of Brussels.   

I cut mine back to about 9" in March then pull away the dead top growth before new growth starts.   It makes for an easy routine to get into.  I then leave the piles for OH to clear to the compost heap as he's no good at pruning and positively dangerous with clems.

He once commented that a montana had finally managed to cover a shed we had in our previous garden - as in, that's taken it's time! - and the poor thing took offence and wilted the next day so he's not allowed near live clems any more.

Last edited: 24 July 2016 08:52:52

Hamamalis for fragrance?

Posted: 24/07/2016 at 08:37

I visited a famous hamamelis collection at Kampenhout in Belgium and was impressed with the perfume of Danny which also had coppery coloured flowers so I bought one but he didn't like my garden unfortunately.  

I tried Orange Peel a few years later after some milder winters and it is doing very well and has lovely perfume and flower colour.   Jelena, named after the lady of the couple who bred so many good ones, also has good perfume and yellow flowers.

Clematis Dying?

Posted: 24/07/2016 at 08:29

Sorry Richard. I've no idea where the hostas came from.  I meant clematis of course.  

Iamweedy - I have a fabulous EV that gets cut back every March and then covers an arch with ease every year - so much so we took the arch down to make a bigger one for it this spring.   I also treat all my group 2s as group 3s and prune hard in March as all their top growth gets frozen off in a normal winter here.


Posted: 24/07/2016 at 08:23

18C and overcast today with a light breeze so feeling fresh.   Rain due at the end of the morning so I still can't go and spray the bindweed patch - all treasures cleared to a nursery bed for quarantine and weeds left to grow and be zapped.

More attic clearing this morning thin and maybe some gardening this pm.

I am also a schlepper with a whole set of cast offs from OH and my own former smarter clothes that do for gardening and DIY and general pottering.   The kaftans are for when I'm clean and ready to snuggle on a sofa with a dog or even an OH to cuddle.   Possum only does snuggles when she's feeling low so not a lot of those about.


Posted: 23/07/2016 at 20:10

Adult chicken pox can be nasty.  Hope little one recovers and you haven't caught it Yvie.

I am cool, as opposed to sweltering, but it's getting close again.   I have adopted a pair of Converse that Possum was chucking out.  Is that cool?   They're for dog walking when wellies and walking shoes are too heavy.

Other than that, sort of a lamb pastilla in the oven to bake.  Need to make a sauce and a green salad and then dinner is done.   Drinking a large glass of well earned NZ Nobilo.    

Clematis Dying?

Posted: 23/07/2016 at 20:05

Richard Hodson has a national collection of hostas and know his stuff.  I think you would do well to heed his advice on watering.  That's an awful lot of leaf for one small pot of compost to maintain in good nick.  No wonder some is going brown.


Posted: 23/07/2016 at 18:17

Been to Brighton twice - staying just the one night either end of a trip to Tatton flower show with a former Beeb GW boarder.   Needed to do my usual raid on a supermarket as I left and found all the traffic and parking and one ways a bit of a nightmare.  much better when that was done and I was driving along the front taking in the view of sea, piers and buildings.

I love kaftans.  I made a warm winter one from woven wool fabric, have a thinner cotton one for summer and also couple of short thin lawn cotton ones for hot day schlepping and wearing over a cozzy in the days when we did beach hols with Possum.  Still have them just in case.  

No gardening today apart from dividing and potting up a clump of short white Michaelmas daisies and some white lychnis coronaria.  The forecast was for cloudy but dry and we've had intermittent downpours and thundery stuff all day so I've been oiling chairs and sorting out attics and gathering bedding for packing.   Got quite a bit done so not a day wasted grumping at the rain.

Now to do something creative with left over leg of lamb and some rice.  North African fruity and spicy maybe.

First to take off the dress I donned when I cleaned up to go to the SM and put on a comfy kaftan to cover my legs.  Mozzies and horse flies about and biting.

Last edited: 23 July 2016 18:18:44

Clematis Dying?

Posted: 23/07/2016 at 14:11

Yes, forgot the pot size bit.   When I buy new clems I pot them up for their first eyar or two to let them develop new roots in peace before the go in the borders.  Minimum pot size for this is 45cm wide and 60 deep.  If yours is to spend its life in a pot it needs more space.

When you re-pot it, bury it 3 or 4 inches deeper than it is now as this encourages extra shoots and use a good John Innes no 3 compost with some added coir or leaf mold to help retain moisture but not make it sodden.

Clematis Dying?

Posted: 23/07/2016 at 13:52

How often do you water it and have you fed it?

Clematis are hungry, thirsty plants usually and potting compost generally only had food for 100 days.  This means you need to top dress your pots with, preferably, specialist clematis feed every spring and then give occasional feeds of liquid tomato food as an extra tonic.

Having said that, some browning of the older leaves is normal.  In order to stop it getting "bare legs" you need to keep it pruned regularly to encourage new leafy shoots form the base.   This simply involves dead heading after the first flush of flowers and cutting off any growth that is exceeding the bounds you have set.  Give it a feed then and it should produce a second flush in late summer.

Black garden after Evergreen 4 in 1.

Posted: 23/07/2016 at 13:41

Grass seed does best when sown in April or September when moisture levels and temperatures are usually at their most favourable for good germination.  Rake the bare areas to loosen the soil then scatter on some decent compost if you need to make things level then sow the grass seed on that.

The RHS offers this comprehensive advice on repairing damaged lawns, including re-sowing.


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