Latest posts by Obelixx


Posted: 24/02/2017 at 20:39

We only arrived in October GD.    Most of the plot is grass and has been pasture for centuries.   There aren't many herbaceous  plants here and a lot of shrubs and trees suffered from the drought and died or struggled.   We have cleared dead stuff and weeds from 3 beds now and they have all had several inches of cheap multi-purpose compost poured on to improve the soil.

I have a lot of pruning of dead stems and overgrown neglected shrubs as well as a few more corpses to shift.   We are planning to install water butts on at least 4 down pipes from the house roof and lay a pipe to the planned potager for watering babies but we expect good soil management to allow for decent crops and plants.

As we make new ornamental beds to accommodate the plants we brought form Belgium and the babies I plan to sow, we will make sure the soil is well prepared and beefed up to help it retain moisture and nutrients.

I will not be planting bamboo and I am currently off ornamental grasses too.

How to Pronounce 'Gean' as in Wild Cherry?

Posted: 24/02/2017 at 20:29

It's going to be your house.  Pronounce it in the way that suits you best.

Or change the name if you like.   Mazzard or massard is an old alternative to gean but you can call it what you like.

Last edited: 24 February 2017 20:30:46

Hello Forkers - February 2017 Edition

Posted: 24/02/2017 at 20:27

OH ahs just left to pick up Possum at Angers.   Wanted to get there in time to have a coffee and relax before driving home.   I have a some lemon curd on the go now as she loves it.   Making a large quantity so I have some for her to take back to Namur and some to give to our lovely neighbours either side.   Might be stirring for a while.............

My mango chutney will need extra mangoes.   Turns out this Antilles chilli is volcanic!   I like a kick, not anesthesia of the taste buds.

Starting off dahlias

Posted: 24/02/2017 at 17:06

In my Belgian garden I would fish them out of winter storage in mid to late March, soak them in a bucket of water for a day and then plant in trays of compost in the garage till shoots appeared.   Once the shoots were visible i'd give them light by day and when they were 3 or 4 inches high I'd pot up into their final pots but keep them sheltered at night till the last frosts in mid May.

Here I'm expecting the garden to get warm a lot sooner so I started off my new tubers as soon as they arrived last week.   So far,  one Bishop of Auckland has a couple of decent shoots but all the others are lying doggo and are clearly not ready to burst into life just yet.

You need to think about how long you'll need to keep yours sheltered between shooting and planting out.  If space is restricted, leave it a few weeks yet.

Last edited: 24 February 2017 17:07:19

Pruning Roses

Posted: 24/02/2017 at 16:51

Have a read of this advice form the RHS.  It covers all the rose types, how to identify and how to prune - https://www.rhs.org.uk/advice/profile?PID=186

Late Bulb Planting

Posted: 24/02/2017 at 16:49

They need to be planted as soon as you can.  As it's late, they may not flower very well this year but at least in the ground they can get their foliage working on building up energy for next year's flower.

Left unplanted, they will die.

Hello Forkers - February 2017 Edition

Posted: 24/02/2017 at 16:46

We were very surprised to find a scattering of bayonet bulbs when we moved here after 25 years of screw-ins or halogen and then LED spots in Belgium.   Meant we had to go and buy spares for the kitchen and outhouses.   Gradually changing those light fittings now as they look rather ancient.   Curiously, light fittings are much cheaper in Belgium, as are new radiators, electrical cable and connections, pipes and all sorts, not to mention VAT for work on old buildings.

Have done the supermarket raid.  No mango chutney so I'm about to make some.    OH says the latest batch of lime pickle is delish so I hope the mango recipe works as well.

We left the robot going while we were out.  OH found it bleeping under a tall shelf unit with a  message "Please release me".  I can feel a song coming on.


Plant ID please

Posted: 24/02/2017 at 13:15

Could be one of many bulbs.  Leave it to flower and then you'll see if it's a keep or a digger up and chuck.  However, if you have scalped it every year it may not have had the energy to make flowers and all you'll get is greenery which needs to be left on to feed the bulb for flowers next year..

Last edited: 24 February 2017 13:16:21


Posted: 24/02/2017 at 13:13

GD - Summer temps should be mid 30s but not humid so very bearable.

I've found a photo of the offending articles from last summer when they were green.   The RHS thinks they may be a form of miscanthus so lucky OH gets to chop down every stem.  That'll keep him busy and me in bean poles for a while.

I shall then keep an eye on subsequent growth to keep it less dense.

The dwarf conifers in this photo all died in the drought so last month we tied ropes round and towed them out with the car.   Happy to lose those but I shall plant some more attractive conifers when we get new beds dug.   

Hello Forkers - February 2017 Edition

Posted: 24/02/2017 at 10:16

Quiet and sunny here with a fresh breeze.  Lovely day.  Currently doing h****work to clean and tidy for the weekend.  Possum is coming for 4 days, arriving by train as there were no flights at short notice.   She has to do some video work for her course and wants to go and film Nantes on Saturday.  Double yikes!   Lots of lovely things in the Vendée and she wants to do a big city on a shopping day.

Other than that a SM run and taking it easy.  The arthritic bits in my upper spine are complaining.   Humph!

Dove - well done but why do you need mascara to take OH to work?

Busy - lovely find.  Unfortunately both our wheelbarrows are metal and still serviceable for many years I hope.  I wonder if they'd like an old threshing machine we have discovered, unaccountably, upstairs in the ruin across rotting floorboards.

Last edited: 24 February 2017 10:17:12

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