Latest posts by Obelixx

GW magazine subscription

Posted: 04/03/2016 at 14:00

I think Christopher Lloyd is beyond the reach of mortal gardeners..........

I too would go with AT rather than MD when taking advice based purely on my experience with them and a brief comparison of their horticultural credentials for anyone in doubt.

I also prefer The Garden which come free with an RHS subscription - more detail, more varied, less repetitive.  

However, when I was setting off down the path of becoming a keen gardener I did learn loads from both GW on TV and GW magazine but that was back in the day with Geoff H at the helm - great knowledge, great communicator and understood the aspirations and budgets of beginners and experienced gardeners and catered for a variety of budgets and garden sizes.

In Or Out Of The EU Garden?

Posted: 04/03/2016 at 13:49

The bureaucrats live here HCF!  They are seconded on 3 year rolling rotas like diplomats on foreign service.   Some stay here all their professional lives.   Boris Johnson went to Eton thanks to his dad being seconded to the EU!   There are EU schools here too but some prefer to send their kid sto boarding school or BSB, the British school of Brussels.  They get their houses and schools paid for and lots of other perks but there are, proportionally, as many Brits as any other nationality and all working the system for themselves and their career as much as for their home country.

It's not just EU bureaucrats that make daft rules.  How many daft ones does the UK parliament invent each year?  or your local council?

The main problem as I see it is a lack of information in the UK about how much good the EU does and also about what is available to the UK from EU finances and systems.   Too many see it is as a block rather than an opportunity.  It is easier to influence for the good from the inside than it is just peering through a thickly glazed window or a keyhole and wishing.

growing rhubarb

Posted: 04/03/2016 at 13:03

We use an old dustbin with a  brick on top to hold it down when windy.  Works a treat.  Very cheap and can be used for holding garden rubbish when sorting stuff for the compost heap the rest of the year.

Gardening by the Moon

Posted: 04/03/2016 at 13:00

Cavolo Nero is OK down to about -5C if it's not too windy with it.  It definitely doesn't like the -15C we had in January.  It does come from Tuscany after all.

The ordinary curly kale is fine but a  bit tough now.  I shall harvest some more when fresh new leaves appear and then clear that away as well to make room for salads and red onions.   PSB will be sown for another bed.

In Or Out Of The EU Garden?

Posted: 04/03/2016 at 12:55

Perhaps you don't realise that the bureaucrats in Brussels are sent there by the member countries.  The UK has its fair share of jobsworths and others working in EU institutions and also on the outside lobbying those institutions on behalf of vested interests from businesses to charities.

It's always better to change and improve things from the inside.  We are also culturally closer to Europe than anywhere else in the world.  

As a gardener, I see the influence of British gardening here on the continent but also vice versa.   I don't want to use chemicals like creosote or DDT or their successors because I care about my family's health and my descendants' health and the health and balance of the countryside around me.    Any responsible government would ban them and the so-called anonymous Brussels bureaucrats who drew up those rules had their fair share of Brits in the mix.

I hope they continue to do so as there is much still to be done.  Nor do I think withdrawing from Europe will improve the quality of home-grown politicians at local or regional level.    You do that at the ballot box by voting for the best person and not blindly for some party.

Gardening by the Moon

Posted: 03/03/2016 at 16:52

All my cavolo nero froze to death in January.  I'm hoping it'll be fine enough tomorrow to lift it all and bin it and hoe the bed ready for another crop.

Anyone done any gardening today - Version 2

Posted: 03/03/2016 at 16:50

Patchwork class today so no gardening.   I have discovered life is too short to quilt a patchwork table mat by hand.   

We've had strong winds and hail most of the day anyway but it's sunny now.  Maybe it'll stay fine for a bit of gardening tomorrow.  I want to clear frozen cavolo nero from our veg patch and hoe it ready for onion sets.

Windy garden

Posted: 03/03/2016 at 16:46

I have planted a row of black and redcurrants along the boundary of our fruit and veg patch.  However, 18 months ago I decided to add a protection of windbreak fabric and they are doing much better, as is the rest of the veg plot.

I extended the windbreak along the ornamental boundary too and this year, for the first time since I planted it 5 years ago, our witch hazel was covered in blooms and no dead branches.   I have also lost fewer plants in teh borders and a Japanese quince is thriving for the first time in 15 years.

It may seem expensive but investing in a roll of 1.25 m high windbreak fabric will pay dividends in healthier plants and better crops.


Posted: 02/03/2016 at 16:09

Pansy - lime pickle is difficult t find here so when OH runs out, I make it.   This recipe works well but I cut the segments into smaller chunks - http://www.taste.com.au/recipes/22191/indian+lime+pickle


Anyone done any gardening today - Version 2

Posted: 02/03/2016 at 13:46

Yvie - have you looked at Omoshiro?   http://www.clematis.hull.ac.uk/new-clemdetail.cfm?dbkey=1545

I tried Black Prince but the flowers were disappointing and he turned up his toes the following winter.    Omoshiro has large flowers with deep pinky red margins that will go with your pink stuff and not clash.  I grow mine as a group 3 as its top gets blasted by wind and/or frost in winter but it puts on a good show every year.   

If you want a strong, deep pinky red, go for Princess Diana which is very happy here and always covered in flowers all summer long until quite late on.

No gardening here.  We have a short sunny spell at the mo between heavy sleet showers and with hooly winds all day so I'm staying tucked up and doing my patchwork homework after getting frozen yesterday.   Started off clearing dead growth on perennials and forking up huge nettle runs (again) before getting rained indoors to pot up some bulbs I found lurking in the garage.    Fingers crossed they'll be OK.

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