London (change)


Latest posts by obelixx

More coal than soil

Posted: 21/05/2015 at 11:26

If it's actual coal then you need to remove as much as you can or make raised beds.

I have a friend whose entire garden is coal slag heap and have visited another with similar conditions in the Belgian Yellow Book.    Both use masses of garden compost and well rotted manure applied every autumn to improve the soil structure and combat the otherwise fierce drainage and low fertility.    Both have gorgeous gardens filled with interesting plants so it can be done. 

Busy Lizzie's Open Garden

Posted: 21/05/2015 at 11:16

Well done Busy.   Are you in an Open Garden scheme or part of a garden club that gets you known?    

I have friends here who open their garden for the Belgian equivalent of the Yellow Book and that has led to them being used as a regularly featured garden on Jardins Loisirs - Belgium's GW programme on RTBF - and they also get groups of visitors from gardening, horticultural and flower arranging clubs in Belgium, France, Netherlands and Italy.   Currently averaging one group a week which I would find tiring but they're not expected to do tea and biscuits.

Sweet Cicely

Posted: 21/05/2015 at 09:40

Both plants are best left in hedgerows as they self seed and spread with gay abandon and are far too exuberant for most gardens.   They also have deep roots which are hard to dig out from amongst your treasures.

Having said that, I like a bit of sweet cicely but I do control it and no longer leave the flowers to go to seed.  It has attractive foliage.

Hostas - they're so ............. fussy!

Posted: 21/05/2015 at 09:32

Several years ago we had all the old farmyard tarmac removed from the front of our south facing house to reveal the old cobbled road that had been laid with small 3" to 4" granite pavers at the turn of the 1900s.    Between that and the house was a mix of larger cobbles dating back 250 years and some sandy gaps where we made a 7m x 4 metre raised bed which we filled with imported soil and a truck load of farmyard manure form our riding school neighbours.

I then toddled off to visit Diana Grenfell's nursery to buy a whole load of hostas that can cope with sun and some grasses for contrast.    They did so well I ended up taking the whole lot out 3 years later and putting them in pots or the back garden and selling spare divisions at charity sales.   The labels are long gone but I know I have Sum and Substance, Naegato and Gold Edger in there along with a  dozen others bought at thesame time and newer ones added since.    

They are all now in shade or semi shade with full sun for just a part of the day.   I find the white and cream variegations are stable but the yellow/gold ones change each year depending on how sunny and dry a spring we have.

I love them all anyway for their form, colour and texture from all the different shapes and sizes and thicknesses of their leaves.   The trick is to be vigilant with bio friendly slug pellets from early spring to catch the perishers as they emerge from hibernation or hatch from eggs and before they feast and breed on my treasures.

Rose identification please

Posted: 20/05/2015 at 21:59

Well, if you're sure it's one of theirs send them a photo and tell them how long you've had it and they'll tell you its name.

I've found them very helpful in the past when contacted by email about which roses are sturdy enough for my garden and which might be a bit wussy.

If it turns out not to be one of theirs, try the national rose society.

Rose identification please

Posted: 20/05/2015 at 21:37

Can't open those pictures but have you tried searching the David Austin on-line catalogue?   It should have a picture and description of all of their roses.

Interloper ID please

Posted: 20/05/2015 at 21:15

Maybe a baby hornbeam?  or beech?

Chelsea tv coverage.

Posted: 20/05/2015 at 21:13

The Islamic garden is very elegant but too stark and white for an English or northern European climate - blinding when sunny and would soon start going green with mold in all the damp parts of the year.   Fine in a sunny climate where you need cooling stillness and calm but not for our climate where you want colour and life and buzz from plants and insects for the relatively short part of the year where you can live and play outside.

I nearly always love the Japanese gardens with their rich planting, teh water features and the moss but can't imagine living with one of the Cheslea exhibits - two dogs, a husband, friends to play and I'm not a control freak and you have to be to keep a Japanese garden up to scratch.   One day maybe I could have a wee Japanese corner.........

Cornus problem

Posted: 20/05/2015 at 19:49

It looks like it may be rust.   There's some info here about how and why it occurs - and how to treat it.

You need to pick off and destroy (not compost) all the affected leaves and then feed your plant with bonemeal or phosphorus which will promote strong roots and potassium which encourages strong growth.  This will help make a strong plant that can fight off pests and diseases.

Keep nitrogen to a minimum as this makes for soft, sappy growth which is more susceptible to pests and diseases.   Tomato fertiliser would work well if you can't get the individual components.

Chelsea tv coverage.

Posted: 20/05/2015 at 19:13

He gave some poor viewer a bronze last night!

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1 to 15 of 17 threads