London (change)
Today 19°C / 11°C
Tomorrow 19°C / 11°C


Latest posts by obelixx

Clematis newbie question

Posted: 06/06/2013 at 20:50

Group 3 clematis do indeed put on all their growth in one season and are best cut back in early spring and then given a generous feed.  However, their dead growth can look really tatty once all the foliage dies back in autumn so, for a front door, it may be best to cut it back in autumn.

Group 2 clematis get pruned later in spring to remove any dead stems back to a pair of healthy buds.   They also need a good feed.  Once their first flush of flowers is over in late spring, early summer, they can be pruned to keep them in bounds and to remove some of the dead heads before they go to seed.   This will encourage a second flush of flowers later in summer.


Posted: 06/06/2013 at 17:44

Forest Flame has bright red new foliage in spring.  This then fades to yellow and eventually turns green as teh season progresses. 

It is an ericaceous plant which means it needs acid soil and soft water, preferably rain water.  If you have planted it in alkaline soil it will struggle.  If you've been watering it with hard tap water it will struggle as the alkalinity prevents it taking up certain nutrients from the soil and it will become anaemic.

If you do have it in neutral to acid soil and do not have hard water it will benefit from a good mulch of ericaceous compost for rhododendrons, azaleas and heathers.

If you soil is neutral to alkalin you need to transfer it to a pot filled with ericaceous compost and water it with an ericaceous feed which contains sequestered iron.  The food available in teh compost will be used up within 6 weeks to 3 months so you will have to make sure it gets extra food and all its water needs.    Never use hard tap water.

Here is some info from the RHS -


What to feed a newly planted Laurel Hedge

Posted: 06/06/2013 at 10:12

I don't think it needs a daily watering.  You'll just be drowning it and leaching nutrients out of the soil.  Only water once a week now, maybe more often if we get a long hot dry spell.

Rootgrow only works directly on the roots so putting it in the planting hole will only help if any roots do manage to come in direct contact with the product.  

I don't think laurel needs feeding to encourage it to grow a sthey are vigorous even in poor soils.   You could try a scattering of pelleted chicken manure along the hedge but I would wait till autumn and then give it a generous mulch of well rotted manure or garden compost which teh worms will work in for you over the winter.


Posted: 06/06/2013 at 10:06

Stop watering.  It's probably drowning.   What is it?   having a name will help us identify its needs and likely problems.

Robinia Tree problems...

Posted: 06/06/2013 at 09:13

I can't see that where you plant it is going to make a difference to its life expectacncy. 

It might be  a good idea to take fresh soil and plenty of garden compost from elsewhere in the garden to prepare the hole and make sure it's planted at the same level it was in the pot and doesn't sink afterwards as the soil settles as this can also lead to its feet getting too wet and root rot and a struggling plant.

Feeding clematis

Posted: 06/06/2013 at 09:08

In pots, once a week from new spring growth through flowering time.    In the ground, it depends on how well they've been planted and in what soil but, after a hard wet winter I'd give a few drinks from spring growth to the start of the flowering period if I think they need a boost.

Feeding clematis

Posted: 06/06/2013 at 00:27

Yes, they are greedy and need feeding to do well.

You can give them special clematis food available from good garden centres and nurseries.  In spring they appreciate a general purpose food such as blood, fish and bone or pelleted chicken manure.  You can also give them liquid tonics of rose or tomato food as they have a high potassium ratio which encourages flowering.


Posted: 05/06/2013 at 21:21

Some of my white ones should open in the next few days but the normal pink ones and the perennial ones are much further behind.


Posted: 05/06/2013 at 21:18

I like blues, pinks, purples, bronzes, rich deep reds and I like to set them off with white flowers and some purple foliage.  I also like to play with foliage contrasts so have a rhythm of deep purple and golden foliage plants in amongst all the different shades and forms of green.

I have huge problems with bright orange and acid yellows but I'm learning to use the orange spectrum as long as it's got burnt or russet tones in it.   I've just planted up a bed with orange geums, potentillas, rudbeckia and heleniums with tawny irises and some purple flowered bulbs with a bit of purple leaved heuchera and lysimachia firecracker.  It remains to be seen how well it does.


Growing by the Moon Calender

Posted: 05/06/2013 at 18:50

As I understand it, continental Europe is always one hour ahead of the UK.  We are here in Belgium and we don't change clocks when we go to France........

Quite a lot of people on here will ridicule any idea that lunar gardening works.  Others are happy to live and let live and some will be quietly giving it a go.   i did it myself a few years ago and it was very successful but then I had a French magazine with a pull out lunar calendar.  haven't found one since but i do sometimes check this site when i'm sowing seeds  or taking cittings -

Last year I had neck surgery so just gardened as and when I could.  This year t's been 2 new feet so nearly all my gardening at the moment is playing catch up on weeding and I have to do that when time and weather and feet permit.   I did use the lunar calendar to sow tomatoes and some seeds from dried Kashmir chillies back in March and had amazing success.   Pity it's been too cold to plant them out but they'll be migrating to the greenhouse any day now.  I need my windowsills for other seeds.


Discussions started by obelixx

Plant id for Obxx

Who knows what this is please? 
Replies: 5    Views: 219
Last Post: 01/07/2015 at 16:53

GW 2015

Programme content discussion 
Replies: 46    Views: 1631
Last Post: 16/03/2015 at 18:44

Chelsea photos

Replies: 36    Views: 1703
Last Post: 02/06/2014 at 09:30

Hello Jro - and any other old friends

Catch up chat 
Replies: 3    Views: 801
Last Post: 27/05/2013 at 09:18

Mare's tail

Replies: 3    Views: 1141
Last Post: 01/08/2013 at 17:01

Encouraging bats in our gardens

Replies: 23    Views: 1515
Last Post: 26/04/2013 at 21:35

Beechgrove this weekend

Replies: 6    Views: 807
Last Post: 12/04/2013 at 11:05

Weekend 22 March

Chat about plans for the weekend 
Replies: 108    Views: 4217
Last Post: 24/03/2013 at 18:19

Good Morning - 21 March

Replies: 33    Views: 1968
Last Post: 22/03/2013 at 09:57

Choosing chillies

Replies: 3    Views: 1141
Last Post: 23/02/2013 at 18:47

Hanging baskets and window boxes

Replies: 32    Views: 2907
Last Post: 03/03/2013 at 18:12

New shed - any tips?

Replies: 24    Views: 13161
Last Post: 22/02/2015 at 15:50
12 threads returned