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Latest posts by obelixx

Problem Clay soil

Posted: 16/02/2013 at 11:37

As Bob and others have said, clay soil is very fertile and will grow many plants very well but you do need to be patient and very generous adding layers of well rotted manure and/or garden compost every autumn.   The worms will work it in for you over the winter and the prodding with a garden fork will help aerate as well as improve drainage.

Friends of mine have just such a one hectare garden they started 9 years ago.   They make their own compost and also buy in tonnes of council compost every autumn.  He then spends December and January barrowing it around the beds.   Even after a few years it's making a huge difference and they grow a wide variety of trees, shrubs, roses, climbers and bulbs and hardy perennials so there's something to look at or smell all year round. 

The Potting Shed.

Posted: 15/02/2013 at 22:57

We have a garden gnome OH inherited when his dad died.  I'm hoping it dies of frost bite.    I have birds in my garden - 4 different guineau fowl made from clay sculpted in the UK and 2 in Belgium, 6 made from metal in Zimbabwe, one clay owl, one metal heron, one metal cock, one metal hen, one metal cat and a metal frog.

I really dislike gnomes and fairies and twee stuff but that's a matter of taste and they'd look very foolish in my garden.  Don't think it's stuffy of the RHS to ban them from Chelsea but I expect the designers and exhibitors will have some fun with them this year.    The RHS does a lot of really good work promoting gardening for children, schools and communities as well as research and advice on plants, diseases, design and so on.   Most of its experts and committee members are professional gardeners and nurserymen and women earning a modest living, not landed gentry and toffs.

modest hellebores

Posted: 15/02/2013 at 18:46

I agree.  They don't like root disturbance either so are best planted out and then left in situ for a few years.    You could try growing them in a raised bed or large trough to reduce the bending but I find most of mine show off their flowers quite well especially after I've pruned out the old and tatty foliage once flowering starts. 

Joys of Spring

Posted: 15/02/2013 at 16:28

Not yet.  Still grey and damp here with bits of snow lying around and temps hovering around 0C for the next few days.

Happy though.  Early spring just means stuff gets excited, puts on tender, sappy new growth and then gets zapped by a whopper frost in March or April.   Slow spring is much better.

RHS refugees

Posted: 15/02/2013 at 15:05

I belong to both boards and was on the Beeb before they closed their boards.   Lots of different kinds of poster here from old hands to complete novices and everything in between.    More going on here though.

Suggestions for a South-facing wall

Posted: 15/02/2013 at 10:08

Price usually.  Pot grown are more expensive but can be planted any time of year of you make sure to prepare a decent planting hole and water it all through its first growing season.   Bare rooted have to be planted in the dormant season from leaf fall to mid winter so their roots can get established and nourish the plant on their own through the next growing season.

Gardens And Beyond...........

Posted: 15/02/2013 at 09:41

A new thread, as proposed, would be self proliferating.   As new people join and feel excluded or too shy to break into an idle chat thread they'd want to start their own and so it would go on.

Perhaps Daniel could start a thread for "Over the Garden Fence" off topic chat with a clear headline explaining what it is and making everyone welcome to join in.   It would avoid cluttering up the boards and the creation of potential cliques.

Gardens And Beyond...........

Posted: 14/02/2013 at 22:26

I thought that was what the Fork Handles thread was for........

Hanging baskets and window boxes

Posted: 13/02/2013 at 19:50

Your hanging basket is lovely Lilylouise but I should have mentioned that I also dislike begonias.   I usually grow fuchsias in the baskets on the north side.  

I do like the look of the Million Bells as long as they're not sticky like their bigger cousins.   I see that sourcing seed is very difficult so I'll just have to keep an eye on the plant shops round here for some small plants to grow on. 

Do these grow through plants?

Posted: 13/02/2013 at 18:01

If you don't yet know what will come up in your garden the best advice is to wait for a whole growing season to see what grows.  Take photos and make notes of gaps to fill and plants to replace/lift/divide/remove and have some annuals on standby to plug gaps.

All plants have an optimum size or eventual size and, to do their best, need the space to get the light, water and nutrients they need to produce decent foliage and/or flowers.   Once you know what's there and can improve the fertility of the soil with mulches of good garden compost, you can think about layering plants for a succession of blooms so that, for example, daffodils get replaved by aquilegias or hardy geraniums and they get replaced by late flowering plants such as rudbeckias and heleniums.

Don't try being too ambitious too soon as you may end up spending money on plants which don't get established and die or are weak.  


Discussions started by obelixx

Chelsea photos

Replies: 36    Views: 1063
Last Post: 02/06/2014 at 09:30

Hello Jro - and any other old friends

Catch up chat 
Replies: 3    Views: 497
Last Post: 27/05/2013 at 09:18

Mare's tail

Replies: 3    Views: 654
Last Post: 01/08/2013 at 17:01

Encouraging bats in our gardens

Replies: 23    Views: 985
Last Post: 26/04/2013 at 21:35

Beechgrove this weekend

Replies: 6    Views: 545
Last Post: 12/04/2013 at 11:05

Weekend 22 March

Chat about plans for the weekend 
Replies: 108    Views: 3129
Last Post: 24/03/2013 at 18:19

Good Morning - 21 March

Replies: 33    Views: 1531
Last Post: 22/03/2013 at 09:57

Choosing chillies

Replies: 3    Views: 828
Last Post: 23/02/2013 at 18:47

Hanging baskets and window boxes

Replies: 32    Views: 2138
Last Post: 03/03/2013 at 18:12

New shed - any tips?

Replies: 18    Views: 6140
Last Post: 12/01/2013 at 08:55
10 threads returned