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Latest posts by obelixx

For whom do we garden .............

Posted: 21/04/2013 at 20:38

They do say to plant two different ones so you get cross pollination and it certainly increased my crop when I bought a friend for my my blueberry a few years ago.   You could help things along by planting nearby some plants that flower at the same time so that they attract pollinators to the blueberries.   

Clematus montana or triffid?

Posted: 21/04/2013 at 19:32

Yes indeed, immediately after flowering and that should happen in teh next few weeks.

You can then either give it an overall hair cut to tidy it up and cut a few main stems at the base then leave them to wilt before pulling them out or cut the whole thing back to low pairs of leaves and then train the new growth where you want it to grow.   Whatever you do, make sure you give it a good feed of proper cleatis food and a liquid tonic of rose or tomato food to give it a boost.

For whom do we garden .............

Posted: 21/04/2013 at 16:20

That's gardeners.  Ever optimistic.  Good luck with your crop.  I fed mine a couple of weeks ago as they're planted in big holes of ericaceous compost in otherwise fertile but alkaline loam.   Happy enough when not frozen to death.

For whom do we garden .............

Posted: 21/04/2013 at 14:33

I'm told you can solve the problem of their being dug up by putting a layer of chicken wire over the bulbs once planted.    I don't have squirrels here.   No grey ones anyway and there's pasture between me and the woods where the red ones live so no access to my garden.

The only bird problem I have is them nicking the blueberries just before they're ripe for human picking so i'm planning to net them this year.  After several years of winter damage reducing stems and fruiting power, I gave them a wind barrier for this winter and that means I have no dead and frozen stems this year so I'm hoping for a good crop.

Encouraging bats in our gardens

Posted: 21/04/2013 at 13:51

I'd be interested too Nut.  We had a bad year for butterflies last year and that probably meant bad for moths too.   When we cleared our barn out at Easter, ready for renovation, we did find a few hibernating but only 3 or 4 which is not encouraging for this year's population.

Talkback: Bees and pesticides

Posted: 21/04/2013 at 13:45

I've seen a few bumble bees so far and yesterday had to rescue one that got stuck in the tomato plants on my window sill.  I've built an insect hotel to shelter them and other insects though it needs renovating after the birds have removed some of the fillings like straw and pine cones.   I've also drilled holes in our walls for sloitary bees and wasps to live and lay their eggs.

I have lots fo fruit bushes and veggies that need insect pollination so I don't use any sprays at all as even soapy water can affect beneficial insects.  If I have a major infestation of aphids and not enough ladybirds I'll sometimes blast them off with a spray from the hose pipe but I find that hanging peanut feeders near susceptible plants like roses encourages the birds to come and feast on the pests.   They also take most of the caterpillars of my brassicas so it's win win.


will yellow rattle kill couch grass

Posted: 21/04/2013 at 13:33

Worth a try but I'd weed the big plants out first and use the yellow rattle to weaken the inevitable new ones that come.  I too have couch grass rampaging about no matter ho well I weed my borders so may well give the rattle a try.

Good idea.

Talkback: Growing salad crops

Posted: 21/04/2013 at 13:31

We love salads and I always grow a wee tapestry of green Cos and red oak leaf lettuce in spring and summer.  Looks good and tastes good as well as bringing different textures.   I also grow radicchio but this year I'm branching out and growing various salad mixes. 

I use rocket on its own occasionally but more often as a highlight.  Beetroot leaves are good and pea shoots too.   Baby spinach leaves are a daily staple in OH's packed lunch as it' s good for his eyesight and is ogten a base for family salads but I like to add watercress and fresh herbs for variety along with proper lettuce.  

Cat Friendly Plant Suggestions

Posted: 21/04/2013 at 13:21

I have cats and have never had a problem though I do only gorw lillies in pots so they can't accidently brush up against the pollen which is the dangerous part.   I have foxgloves and daffodils and lily of the valley and trumept vine and have also grown morning glory with never a problem.

For a shady garden, try hostas, primulas, Japanese anemones, ferns, hachonekloa grass, hellebores, snowdrops, aquilegia, heuchera, clematis and pulmonarias.

monty don

Posted: 21/04/2013 at 13:13

All TV programmes cost money to make.  It's up to you what you choose to watch.

Some have tiny budgets and some seem obsecenely extravagant.   Reality TV is generally cheap to make and it shows being, for me, unwatchable crud.  I like programmes that involve some thought, good research, good planning, some taste and some inkling that the viewers may have mroe than three brain cells chasing around their skulls and a memory span of more than two minutes.

I find GW with Monty Don quite dull but occasionally interesting and certainly good enough to spend half an hour of my time in front of the TV in the hopes of seeing something beautiful or learning something new.   It's way better than when Toby hosted it and I like it best when there's limited Joe Swift but that, as in all things, is a matter of my personal taste.

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10 threads returned