Latest posts by Obelixx

Hello Forkers ... August edition

Posted: 02/08/2017 at 14:03

Sunny here and dry - as ever - but there's a pleasant breeze so not too hot for work and play.

Not in the mood for doing much tho as I'm having a  quiet internal grump at OH who has blithely ignored all my drawn and agreed plans for raised beds in the potager because he doesn't want to saw timbers in half to make ends for 1.25m wide beds.  This means I have huge 2.5m wide blocks which mean time and money spent on central paths for access.   Doh! and Humph!

Hope you cheer up Yvie and enjoy your hols.

NB - well done.  Hope the next lot's as easy.

Hosta - that wall looks one of mine after it's been prepped for painting but not yet sanded smooth.  Horrible for you and OH.   

Green paint suggestion

Posted: 02/08/2017 at 13:51

For economy of funds and time I would leave the fence as it is on all sides but maybe stretch some wires across to support climbers.  Have a look at this thread for support ideas - http://www.gardenersworld.com/forum/plants/training-clematis-up-fences/1002916.html

I would then concentrate on making the sheds more attractive and/or less visible with dark green or black shed paint as it's easier to sand the surface and paint those than it would be to do fences anyway.

Green paint suggestion

Posted: 02/08/2017 at 12:33

Try it but I think light sage will take 3 coats or more and look dirty quite quickly.   Try draping some sage and dark green fabric or even paper tablelcloths over the fence to get the idea of which looks best.

Hole in my hedge

Posted: 02/08/2017 at 12:31

You can re-palnt but fork over the soil well to remove all weeds and big stones then bung on a good bucketful or two of well rotted garden compost or manure or even just bought in multi-purpose compost mixed with some bonemeal.  Plant small new shrubs - one or two depending on planting distance of the others, water well and leave to grow up.  

It will take a while but establish more quickly and better than trying to plant full sized shrubs.   Do this in autumn when the soil is moist and warm and the plants have a chance to establish a good root system while the top half is more or less dormant.

In the meantime, put in a couple of stakes or bamboo stems with wires or mesh attached to protect the soil and plants and plug the gap and stop critters or people using it as a thoroughfare.

Green paint suggestion

Posted: 02/08/2017 at 12:25

Paints and stains always drip thru to the other side so yes, you need the owner's permission, especially if you want to maintain good relations with them.

I would go for a good, dark, forest green as this shows up most plants well and will cover the red cedar colour more effectively than pale green.  Even so, plan to do 2 coats to make it look good.   Cuprinol is the leading brand but big DIY chains probably stock others and maybe their own.   You really need to go and look or else google "wood stain+fences"  to get ranges of products and colours.

Ceanothus (Calafornia Lilac

Posted: 02/08/2017 at 12:22

As with any shrub, best pruned back immediately after flowering finishes as long as they flower in spring or early summer.  If they flower later, then prune in spring.

There are varieties of ceanothus in both groups so have a look here for advice from the RHS - https://www.rhs.org.uk/advice/profile?pid=354 


Posted: 02/08/2017 at 12:19

Currently saving all cardboard packing cases to lay on bare veggie beds over winter to keep weeds down and worms warm.    Will plant thru them next spring.

Saving all plastic bottles - not a lot as we have a soda fountain - to make sunken watering devices for pumpkins, squashes and the new fruit cage when it's built.

Saving all compost bags to hold leaves when they fall in autumn.

Buying old wooden bed frames as and when I see them going cheap.  They'll make handy sized raised beds in the potager for asparagus and strawberries.

Can't be fagged cutting up old pots for labels but do re-use labels several times.

Hello Forkers ... August edition

Posted: 02/08/2017 at 11:02

My poor hostas have been chewed to bits by snails - only ever had slugs in Belgium and never this voracious - as well as stressed by the drought.  The one that is holding up best is Dream Weaver which is gorgeous.

Hope your tenants have completely cleared out now and no more nasty surprises in store.  Catalogue all the problems and take photos and definitely withhold the deposit.

After her exertions yesterday, Rasta, aged 10, is prancing around like a playful puppy today.   Clearly had a good sleep!  I shall finish cutting out the new frock and then go and get dirty, and maybe a bit browner too, planting out some more brassicas and "discussing" raised beds with OH.  He wants to change all my plans and dimension to save sawing a few planks in two.   Short termism or what?  

Hello Forkers ... August edition

Posted: 01/08/2017 at 20:49

Hope you're OK now RG.   Love the furry bunny and the creamy monkey.  

No Pav for me thanks Dove tho it is one of my favourite indulgences.   Trying to be good.

Rasta is in the dog house.  Behaved perfectly all day and on walkies till, on the home loop, she dived off into a huge field of sweetcorn thru a new gap in the fence.   She's convinced that sweetcorn here is full of pheasants like near our Belgian house.  Not that she ever caught any, just chased them.   Mongrel!  When we eventually found her trotting down the lane all by herself 40 minutes later she was so exhausted she couldn't eat her dinner and we were famished.

Diseased honeysuckle

Posted: 01/08/2017 at 17:09

Watering yes but also, if you can, take the trellis down when the plant is dormant - late autumn or early winter - and attach battens to the wall then screw the trellis to those.  This will allow air flow around and behind and will make disease less likely as well as training more easy.  

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