Latest posts by Obelixx

Hello Forkers ... September edition

Posted: 14/09/2017 at 21:28

They do look good FG but none for me ta.  Just had a bowl of spag bol, a bit late but I didn't land till 8pm and had a car to unpack and hysterical dogs and purry kittens to greet altho Minstrel is starting to look almost cat like.

Left Namur at 10am and 13C in sunshine - a relief after early downpours as no parking close to the apartment.  Hit more rain as I headed south west but no storms and no jams.  Did have to stop for a zizz as I was awoken at 6am by more street cleaning machines and chaps bringing in stuff for the fêtes de Wallonie.   It's going to be a noisy, rowdy and, for some, drunken weekend.

Got home to find our grass has turned green as we've had an inch of rain in the last week.  OH asked what the chandelier was for.  To hang from the ceiling!   Definitely not a hat, is it?

Early night for me I think.  It's going to be very quiet with no Possum or visits or major shopping expeditions.    You'll be in the same boat next week Chicky but you do have your trip to look forward to so it will fly by.

Hosta - yes, keep nagging till they fix you!  Diary of food, activity and symptoms is a good idea.

Liri - sounds like you've had a good holiday, especially if you need a rest now.   Know how you feel.

Greetings to everyone else.   Hope all is well and WW's pains ease.

Hello Forkers ... September edition

Posted: 13/09/2017 at 19:23

So do I Busy and she's starting to realise it too!   No flatmate tonight after all so I'm cooking us a proper spicy curry as there are no natives to worry about.   Curries in Belgium tend to be very sweet and mild and have too much cochineal.

Glad you enjoyed your garden visit and cake.   Still not used to French garden centres having no cake or coffee.

Plenty of good downpours here but no storms tho plenty forecast thru northern France as I drive home tomorrow.  That'll slow me down but I hope won't be too big a problem tho i do have some high bridges and viaducts to cross.    We've been out and about doing last bits of larder stocking and buying some fabric to cover her electric keyboard.   Better get on and feed her.   

Hello Forkers ... September edition

Posted: 13/09/2017 at 12:42

Hello from a wet but not very windy Namur.   Been to notify th elocals that OH and I are now permanetly gone.  Belgian bureaucracy requires this when you move plus official forms to end contracts for health care and change tax etc.   Long queues but I had my Kindle.

Off now to to do a last shop for Possum's larder and pick up a chandelier for our dining room - great offerings in Trocs here.   Then cooking dinner for Possum and the new flatmate.  Back on the road tomorrow morning.

Glad Chicky's dad is doing well altho intensive care is not a peaceful place to be.  Woke up there unexpectedly after neck surgery and it was a cacophony of beeping machines and pagers.   Pleased to get out of there.

WW needs lots to read and DVDS and such to help pass the time and keep her quiet.

Glad you enjoyed the tour Joyce.  It's a fascinating place.

Hope all goes well Pat.   Just been walking past stands selling Liège whaffles.  Love the smell of vanilla  and caramelised sugar but not the taste or texture.

Enjoy your garden visit Busy.

Off now - lots to do before I head back to a bit of warm.

Hello Forkers ... September edition

Posted: 12/09/2017 at 22:32

Hi gang.    Got to Namur late yesterday evening after a fabulous stop over at Le Mont-St-Michel.  Arrived early evening in dull clouds but had time for a quick visit to explore the towny bits inside the walls before retreating to the hotel and dinner with magnificent views of the Mount.   Up bright and early the next day as it was sunny and we wanted pics as well as a visit to the abbey before the hordes.  It is beautiful - ingenious use of local stone to build a mostly Roman style church and abbey on the rock with later Gothic outbursts.   http://s211.photobucket.com/user/Obelixx_be/library/1709%20Mont-St-Michel?sort=2&page=1   The town houses inside the sea walls are attractive too and very quirky.

Garden group was fun today.   New Russian member so a very interesting lunch.  Got back to Possum's in Namur to run errands and the heavens opened.   Serious dump.  Wish we could have some like that at home!    More tomorrow before I leave on Thursday - have to escape the Fêtes de Wallonie which will be very noisy into the small hours for several days.

Wonky - big hugs.  Hope the steroids work.    

Clari - turn off the phone!!   No business dealing with work issues when you are either off sick or off on hols.  That's for Chief Execs on fabulous salaries and bonus packages - at best.   

Have read back but too much to mention so will just wish you all a good night and a good sleep.

Bark chips

Posted: 12/09/2017 at 21:59

We used to get ours delivered in Belgium from a local chap who had different grades and sizes of chipped bark from different pine trees - important because in windy sites you need the bigger, heavier chunks and in wet areas you need to avoid one sort of pine as it rots too easily.   Much cheaper to have it delivered by the cubic metre or metric tonne than to buy in 50 litre bags for a garden centre or DIY.

However, some tree surgeons and landscapers have spare wood chips from general tree felling which they'll happily deliver free or for very little money just to get the stuff off their hands.    Can't do any harm to ask - as long as you check it's not willow as this tends to root and grow into trees!!   Also need to avoid chips from diseased trees.

In this new garden we are planning new beds, both ornamental and fruit and veg, and we had 10 cubic metres delivered - saves a fortune on buying individual bags.   Proper chipped maritime pine bark which we'll lay on thick to suppress weeds, just as soon as we've had enough rain to enable us to make the new beds and dig in plenty of compost and then plant up and mulch them.

Pottig benches

Posted: 12/09/2017 at 19:43

Space - you want to have room for the compost and be able to work without it spilling over the sides and front whether you're working with pots or trays of modules.   Correct height for you so you don't knacker your back bending or stretching too high.   Site it so that you can work under shelter in inclement weather and make sure it has space and/or a shelf to store pots/trays/bags of compost under or next to it for convenience.

Rosa Gertrude Jekyl

Posted: 12/09/2017 at 19:24

It's just one leaf showing signs of age rather than sickness or malnutrition as the rest of the plant is healthy.  Snip it off and bin it - not on the compost heap - and keep an eye on the rest, just in case.    Keep it moist, but not drowning, until late autumn now and it should carry on flowering till the frosts but leaves will start to fall.

Don't feed it now till next spring and, if you can, put it somewhere sunny but sheltered from heavy frosts and winds for the winter.

Strictly is back!

Posted: 11/09/2017 at 22:16

American Smooth was born out of the musical films with Fred Astaire and Ginger doing lifts and tricks in their routines which were otherwise based on ballroom dances..   Ballroom rules don't allow for lifts and tricks.   Argentine tango does and so does the Charleston and dances like the jitterbug.

I would really like to see some modern sequence dances but am not keen on the old style stuff.  Formation dancing is pretty spectacular to watch and very different in terms of energy and choreography.

I've seen same sex couples competing in Belgium - only men so far - and it's interesting.   

Anyone use Wolf Garten multi-change tools?

Posted: 10/09/2017 at 21:30

We have a dozen or more different heads for Wolf tools and 4 handle lengths.  Never had any wobble or "play" or rattle although we do have a cultivator head that is permanently fixed to its long handle as it got stuck years ago and we've never managed to shift it.   No matter.  We simply bought a new long handle for the rake heads and the push-me, pull-you twin edged hoe heads.

I also have Wolf loppers and Wolf trowels tho I've recently received a Snneboer trowel which is going to be be perfect for this new garden and its heavier soil.


Posted: 10/09/2017 at 21:20

I left behind a garden full of treasures last September and took cuttings of several different roses - pencil size stems plunged round the edges of terracotta pots filled with good planting compost mixed with bit of grit and perlite then watered and covered with a hotel shower cap.

Kept them cool and light all winter but no full sun and only one pot failed completely one of two whose labelling faded so I have no idea now which failed and what is the mystery survivor.   Some, like Queen of Sweden are already flowering despite being small.

The other classic method is to take the cuttings, trim the top and bottom ends and remove all but one pair of leaves then stick the stems in a slit trench made with your spade and with some grit or sharp sand in the bottom.  Put in the cuttings, buried deeply and water well then firm the soil back round them.  Leave over winter and when new growth starts next spring, dig up and pot up and treat well till big enough to be planted out.

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