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Latest posts by obelixx

Clematis in pot.

Posted: 07/06/2012 at 10:46

Clematis are very hungry and thirsty plants so be prepared to feed and water regularly during the growing season and alo protect the roots form freezing in winter as they are more exposed to frost in a pot above ground.

You could underplant with pelargoniums for the summer or for a permanent planting try evergreen grasses such as forms of carex buchananii or blue fescue.   other than that, any hanging basket subject such as trailing lobelia or petnuias would do well but would need replenishing each year.

However, I personally would choose a mulch of slate or gravel with occasional applications of wildlife friendly slug pellets to get the nasties that might eat young clem shoots.


Woody rhubarb

Posted: 06/06/2012 at 13:12

Assuming you are seeking advice , I would suggest it is short of moisture.  Ours was woody last year when we had a very dry spring.  This year it's very juicy.

It may also be that your plant is getting old and needs to be lifted and divided and reinvigorated with generous helpings of well rotted manure but that should be done in autumn or spring and not now.


Posted: 06/06/2012 at 08:21

Should have added that my robinia was planted before the disease was widely known.  It's turned out to be brittle in high winds so lost part of its head a few years ago but is otherwise doing fine now that I've thinned its crown.

If and when it succumbs I'll probably plant a gleditsia.


Posted: 06/06/2012 at 08:17

The trick seems to be moisture.  Mine is in full sun from mid May to mid July when the sun is high enough to get over the house but the soil is moist because it's the lowest part of my garden other than the natural pond.  However it doesn't drown in winter because it's planted up against the edge of the terrace and its footings.  They seem to like fertile soil with loads of compost in it too.

Clematis Montana

Posted: 05/06/2012 at 22:34

If I ony had room for one clem I wouldn't pick a montana - but I would be on the lookout for a new garden that could fit more clems.

I have between 40 and 50 in mine and the latest treasure is a "resurrection" Presdient which has come back to life and is flowering for the first time in 5 years after playing Dodo for 3 years.   Got to love it but I especially love the ones which survive our winters and just get better every year.

Montanas are no good here as they consistently suffer from a heavy frost just as they're about to flower and then give up and die completely.   Group 3s are a much better bet.




Clematis - prune hard back now?

Posted: 05/06/2012 at 14:36

Can you not just detach it from whatever i sholding it up and lay it down while you install a decent bit of trellis?

Failing that, just cut off what you need to release it but leave as much foliage as possible to carry on feeding the roots and making new buds.  Give it a tonic of liquid rose or tomato food to help it regrow.

Talkback: Native versus non-native plants

Posted: 05/06/2012 at 14:33

And thyir sting is good for arthritic bits but I have  " week old rash now from dealing with a combo of nettles, thistles and sticky bud in one bed.  Not pleasant at all in cultivated borders and we need non natives to provide nectar throughout the season and not just in spring and early summer..

I don't mind leaving a fewnettles where I don't have to go and get hurt and we have them growing on the outside of our mesh fence anyway as it's arable and pasture land.  They do make excellent garden compost.





Posted: 05/06/2012 at 11:51

I have a damp, shady bed next to my terrace that is particularly pleasing at the moment - golden hakonechloa, yellow day lilies, a golden dwarf conifer with ferns unfurling, blue, green and variegated hostas, tall white primulas and an astilboides all performing now to be followed by astilbes, Japanese anemones and chelones in shades of pink and purple.   Some aquilegias and sweet rocket have self sown and it's looking stunning, all offset by a low hedge of blue toned conifer between it and the grass beyond.  In early spring there are snowdrops, dwarf daffs, shorter primulas, helleborus foetidus and snake's head frits.   Fab.

All the other beds are as weedy as the fashionable stuff seen at Chelsea - not a good look - but they'll have to wait till I am fully recovered from the neck op.  However I love the rhythm of golden and purple foliafe shrubs along the back border - golden sambucus and a purple acer, another golden sambucus witha physocarpus diabolo, a golden robinia frisia with a prunus cerastifuga to one side and a sambucus black lace to the other.  The gold is picked up by phlomis russeliana and the purple by self swon sweet rocket and verbena bonariensis and some clems.    Out the front I have a purple smoke bush and a gold/bronze conifer which glow in sunshine and even on grey days.


RHS and National Trust.

Posted: 04/06/2012 at 08:45

The RHS is a gardening charity intended to promote horticultural excellence and to disseminate information, advice, training and advice to gardeners both professional and amateur.  It undertakes research into pests, diseases, best techniques, best plants and trains gardeners.  It promotes gardening in schools, in the commnity and in private. 

The National Trust is a charity devoted to preserving British heritage.  It buys, or is bequeathed, historical houses of particular cultural or historic significance as well as gardens and landscapes which it works to maintain and preserve for posterity and in doing so keeps old crafts such as traditional carpentry and stone masonry and so on alive too..




trimming blackcurrants

Posted: 03/06/2012 at 16:11

If you can wait a few weeks until the fruits are ready you can prune the blackcurrants without harming next year's crop by simply cutting out all the fruiting stems and then picking off their fruits at your leisure while sitting comfortably on your favourite garden chair with a suitable beverage at hand.  This leaves enough non fruiting new shoots to mature over the summer and produce fruits next year and keeps your bushes to a reasonable size.

I'm not sure if this system would work on redcurrants as mine have not yet grown so big I need to cut them back.

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