Latest posts by Obelixx

Independence Day?

Posted: 27/06/2016 at 10:56

As someone said - there's only two things sure in life.  Death and taxes.

I do so agree about the the unfairness of taxing pension income saved and invested from earnings already taxed.


Posted: 27/06/2016 at 10:49

Welcome home Punkdoc.   Hope the weather isn't a shock.  At least you won't have jet lag.

Drismal out there today and cool and draughty too.   Woken up early by man come to fix drains.   No mains drains here so rainwater on the rear half drains into our pond and the front fills a cistern and a well with an overflow pipe that runs under the field next door and into the stream that flows through it.  The farmers have recently dredged the bottom to deepen it and so drain the paddock but blocked our pipe while they were there so with all the recent downpours, water backed up and flooded the barn.   Not good.

All blasted clear now with an industrial pressure hose and I've been and banged in a taller post to mark our exit pipe for future excavations.   Now to weeding and potting.  So many slugs my baby beets and salads are going to have to go from plug to pots to grow on in safety.

I hope you are all warmer and drier.

Last edited: 27 June 2016 10:49:53

Independence Day?

Posted: 27/06/2016 at 10:19

Philippa - I am not intending to patronise, just to look above the immediate horizon.   The UK is still a member of the EEA which requires members to adopt EU rules for the free movement of persons, goods, services and capital within the EU so, on the face of it, not a lot will change as far as trade and EU immigration are concerned.

Brexit negotiations may change that.  Germany will, of course, want to continue trading with the UK but bear in mind that following the VW emissions scandal their UK sales figures are down 20% and US sales figures down 25% so they won't want to encourage competition from the UK car industry.   French car manufacturing is suffering from a combination of over capacity and falling sales so they will want to protect their industry.  

British car manufacturing has been increasing in recent years but 4 out of 5 cars made in the UK are exported and the biggest market is Europe following recent falls in sales to India and China.  If the EU gets sticky on trade terms UK car manufacturing may just end up with falling sales, falling production, job losses and maybe foreign companies like Nissan ceasing to invest in the UK and relocating to mainland Europe - ironic as it is a major employer in an otherwise depressed Sunderland economy. 

Investment banks are already moving jobs and operations to Dublin, Frankfurt and Paris.   I shall continue to watch economic and political developments with interest.

Climbing Roses

Posted: 27/06/2016 at 09:25

Your choice will depend on whether you want it repeat flowering, perfume, which colour and its eventual height and spread as well as how good your soil is and how exposed is the site.   Something else to consider is the support system - trellis on battens or wires stretched on vine eyes screwed into the wall - as a vigorous rose can be heavy in strong winds.

David Austin have their own English roses which make short climbers asw ell as other climbing roses.  Peter Beale and Harkness are other rose breeders and growers whose websites you could consult.

I have Generous Gardener (DA) doing very well on the west facing side of a trellis fence that separates my veggie plot from the ornamental garden.   It has soft pink flowers with good perfume and healthy foliage.    Teasing Georgia is another good one - doesn't get quite as big but produces masses of blooms for me over a long period and with good perfume.

There are some repeat flowering ramblers now available too - Malvern Hills, Lady of the Lake, Phyllis Bide.


Posted: 26/06/2016 at 23:39

Autumn, after leaf drop.   The plant will then be dormant and can concentrate on producing new roots over the winter so it's ready for a burst of leafy energy on spring.   If you do it before leaf drop it will be stressed and may fail.

Water the roots well and leave to soak for an hour before digging it up and moving it to its new home. 

Independence Day?

Posted: 26/06/2016 at 20:11

I didn't say we know more, just that we have a wider view because of where we are.   

I see the same thing with local Belgians who don't really look beyond their town, region, country because they only look that far.  Many are as disaffected with their politicians as the British clearly are.

Lots of strife here with the Flemish wanting independence from what they see as the lazy Walloons.  The Flemish have developed from being a largely peasant farmer economy to well educated, hi-tech light industry and innovation whilst the Walloons have inherently created their wealth with old style heavy industry - coal and steel - which have now gone, like in Wales, Yorkshire, the North east.   There is a strong tradition of unionism and Socialism and little appetite for innovation in old industrial Walloon communities so high unemployment and the Flemish don't see why they should underwrite Walloon pensions and benefits.

Similar problems with north and south Italy and also between the more liberal northern economies and the poorer southern economies across the EU even before you look at the strides that need to be made to bring the old communist block members up to economic speed.

When the dust settles and negotiations start reality will hit and I just worry very much that it will be harder for everyone with the UK going alone than it would be working together for economic and social security and standing up to the US trading block.  it would have been so much more productive for the Brits to have brought together the Scandinavians, Dutch, Poles and Baltic states to put a brake on the German and French drive for ever closer unity and integration at a speed which is way too fast for the peoples affected.

Whats eating my lilies? No sign of beetle.

Posted: 26/06/2016 at 17:04


whats this please

Posted: 26/06/2016 at 17:03

It's lovely.  It's hardy.  The colour sings out.  

I grew them for the first time 2 years ago.   Last year I collected seed and dead headed.  Got a second flush of flowers and lots of babies from fresh sown seeds as well as spare seeds to give away to friends. 

Abandoned garden

Posted: 26/06/2016 at 15:18

It depends on size of lawn and budget available.

Have a look around in local garden centres and DIY stores to see what's available and don't forget freecycle.

Infestation on my Day Lillies

Posted: 26/06/2016 at 15:10

I think that's hemerocallis gall midge whose larvae eat the flower buds.

The RHS has this advice - https://www.rhs.org.uk/advice/profile?PID=742 scroll down to Control.

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