Latest posts by Obelixx

Magnolia Stellata

Posted: 20/09/2016 at 21:10

You can plant potted specimens any time of year.  The secret is to soak the rootball thoroughly first by dunking the pot in a bucket of water till no more air bubbles appear and then planting at the right depth in a well prepared hole with good soil and a handful of blood, fish and bone mixed in.  Firm well, stake if necessary and water thoroughly.  

Mulch with something like chipped bark or garden compost to reduce water evaporation and combat any weeds that will compete with it.

Keep watered - but not drowning - until the autumn rains become regular enough to do that for you.  

Remember they don't like alkalinity so make sure your soil is neutral to acid and add ericaceous soil conditioner and feed if needs be.  Do not water with hard tap water.  Use rain water. 

HELLO FORKERS! September Edition

Posted: 20/09/2016 at 20:32

Hazel - I'll be able to take time out once it's all packed up and the house is clean.  Kind of on a deadline here.

FG - have made Possum cook prawn Jalfrezi from scratch with me this evening so at least I know she can do that one now.   Noticed that there's not a lot of signal in the Malvern Hills either.

Plant ID's

Posted: 20/09/2016 at 20:25

Yes, there are several kinds of pampas grass.

Pic 2 looks like salvia Hot Lips.  Pic 3 looks like a gloxinia.   Not familiar with pic 4.

What shape

Posted: 20/09/2016 at 20:14

In that case, have a look and see what's available on Freecycle and be prepared to think laterally.

Moving House in Winter

Posted: 20/09/2016 at 17:50

Our current garden was carved out of cow pasture.  Centuries of poo on deep, alkaline loam so very fertile but completely uneven and boggy and full of weeds, grass and just two ordinary pollarding willows and a gas tank.   We spent the first few years here sorting out the house - kept the outside walls, roof and one lot of beams but everything else is new - to make it habitable and then comfortable before tackling the garden apart form having a man come with a bulldozer to smooth it out, take out those trees and scoop out a big pond for drainage and wildlife.

Now we too are on the move to a house that needs a bit of work but nothing major.  The garden is larger, but half is pasture and a large chunk has been fenced off for hens (future veggie plot? ) and has neutral to acid soil and no heavy or prolonged frosts so I'm looking forward to getting stuck in and making something beautiful but simple to maintain and fun for the dogs and cat while we age disgracefully.

Have you started potting up your treasures and taking cuttings?

HELLO FORKERS! September Edition

Posted: 20/09/2016 at 17:43

Can you not grow them in a pretty Xmassy pot in bulb fibre?   Jim was doing it on Beechgrove on Sunday.

Sounds like you and Lesley have been busy.   I have been distracted by admin and gathering documents needed for the signing ceremonies next week so not a lot of progress in teh attic but much thinking about conifers and brambles and maybe a pergola....   On the whole, I think they conifers we have there can go as they're in the wrong place and not too big to dig out.  Brambles are tricky as OH loves the fruit so might just delegate their control to him.

BUsy - good idea to get a friend over if you can or just make sure you lock up tight every evening.   We tried t get a phone line and, more importantly, an internet connection in August but they couldn't do it at 8 days' notice and the first week of October was too far ahead for the system.  I shall end up camping in the Leclerc car park at Luçon as they have a hotspot.

Dove - mobile phone fixed.  I'd inadvertently hit a language button on the keyboard screen.  Normal service is now resumed and Possum is scathing about my technical incompetence - but I can drive a serious cooker and a food processor and a sewing machine which are better life skills IMHO.   She's about to learn in a big way.



Posted: 20/09/2016 at 16:34

Do they do things in their garden  Sit, play, garden?

I take it you have tried friendly answers to explain that your shrubs and trees are perfectly legal, perfectly reasonable and destined to stay?  

What is the boundary between you?  A fence, a wall?   

Do your deeds have any covenants about boundaries, hedges, shrubs and trees?  

If not, the easy answer may be to erect a standard 1.8m high fence using larch panels or trellis just inside the line on your side so you get your privacy and they can't complain about exceeding accepted rules about boundaries.

What shape

Posted: 20/09/2016 at 16:05

I use the builders' mesh for trellis and screening.  The finer grade meshed sheets and bars are easy to bend around a path or just keep straight and very strong as long as the support posts are well installed.  I have it for supporting pumpkins to get them up in the sun, clematis and climbing roses plus blackberries and loganberries.

Fuschias .

Posted: 20/09/2016 at 14:58

I leave mine whole and put them in an unheated greenhouse and leave them to hibernate. The upper stems will take any frosts and protect the crown. In late winter/early spring when it isn't frosty, dunk the pot in a bucket of water till no further air bubbles appear and then allow to drain completely.   Keep just moist till things warm up and shoots appear.  Cut back to these shoots and feed. Re-pot of necessary but add some fresh compost anyway.

I have also over-wintered some indoors on a cool windowsill and these I treated as houseplants with a bit of watering and no feeding till spring.   They then get potted into fresh compost and put outside once the frosts are past.


Posted: 20/09/2016 at 14:52

It's easy enough to erect a few wooden fence posts inside that wall and either string along tensioned wires or screw on trellis panels that will support climbers such as roses, clematis, honeysuckle and maybe some wall shrubs such as pyracantha.

It all depends on your budget, your skills, the time you have available for installing and maintaining such a feature and its plants and how quickly you want it to function.

Be sure to discuss with the neighbours first so they understand your motives and you don't start any warfare.

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