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Latest posts by obelixx


Posted: 16/11/2015 at 14:32

Seriously wet and soggy here today and windy with it so no gardening.   I have housework to do and dance admin and a major committee problem to sort out but am really not in the mood.

Still have weeds to sort, treasures to transplant to the nursery bed while I clear more bindweed and there are still bulbs to plant.

I know a scientist here who studies wild boar activities in the Ardennes - says they should never be approached, especially when they have young so make sure you do make a noise if you go back to make casts.   

Autumn in Luxembourg

Posted: 16/11/2015 at 13:45

You can do online jig saws with your pics.   TeeGee on the A4A forum is doing it with his gardening based photos and there's a whole website of pics divided by various categoires - addictive on wet, windy, snuggle indoors days like today - 

I shall be seeing the station in Liège for the first time in December.  OH are taking a Thalys to Cologne and staying overnight so we can do the Xmas market and cathedral and a museum or two.   One of them has a fine collection of Flemish landscapes apparently.

Montys secret history of the English garden

Posted: 16/11/2015 at 13:40

Thanks Frank.  It was a damp, grey day so they've turned out reasonably well despite the flat light.

Montys secret history of the English garden

Posted: 16/11/2015 at 12:53

Glad you like the pics.   I'd wanted to go to Levens Hall for years so dragged OH and SIL there when up visiting BIL that year.   It was empty apart from a Dutch couple.

I have two conifers in borders and which I have recently trimmed to tidy up the shape and keep to size but I don't have any topiary ambitions myself as it would become a bind to maintain when I'm old and doddery.

Quite like to see it done well though and I am learning the value of well placed, low box hedges in my own garden but that's my limit. 

Montys secret history of the English garden

Posted: 16/11/2015 at 11:56

Missed the start so came in at the Hampton Court part.   Pleasant enough programme but no new insights.   Agree with Busy about Monty being soporific.  

Good to see Levens Halls garden again.  Here are some pics I took there in July 2011 - 

What kind of climber support?

Posted: 15/11/2015 at 15:26

We have a Kiftsgate rose trained on wires across the front of our house.  It's sturdy, can be placed where you have available space and is discreet in winter.

We have wooden trellis panels elsewhere and, after being battered by storms and gales and some seriously cold winters, find that most of the panels need replacing - 12 in total.   Expensive.

A few years ago when we got our first dog, we enclosed our veggie patch with a system of posts to which we attached 5m x 2m builders' wire mesh for reinforcing concrete.  We have found it to be cheap, indestructible and unobtrusive and well spaced for clematis, roses, squashes and blackberries to be trained along so our plan is to replace 3 of the trellis panels in the front garden with the 3 newest from the back garden and then buy a few lengths of the metal mesh and use that to replace all our broken trellis at the back and side.

Maybe this would be a good alternative for your fence panels as long as you remember to attach battens to your posts and then attach the wire mesh to those so that air can circulate around the plants and you can get your hands in to train stems.



Strictly is back!

Posted: 15/11/2015 at 13:54

Much prefer it with Claudia and Tess but think it would be better still if Tess went and Zoë Ball replaced her.    Tess is becoming a bit too interfering - like Brucie was but at least he knows about dancing.   Very pleased when he went.

Strictly is back!

Posted: 15/11/2015 at 11:42

I thought the scoring was very uneven last night.  Anita danced much better than Jay, Helen's performance left me cold - again, Peter André was back on being underwhelming, Kelly's hip hop stylee samba was brilliant and cleverly slow enough for her to be very accurate with all her feet and bounce and arm movements.   Georgia was very good - again - and Katie did a very good, classic rumba.  Needed a bit more hip action but she did well.

Jamelia's legs were all over the place so she is back to not getting it at all and Jeremy never will.   I couldn't stand him from the start - never have liked him on TV or radio - but he's grown on me because he's trying hard, working hard and having fun but it's no longer enough at this stage of the competition.

Beech hedging advise

Posted: 14/11/2015 at 18:06

In Belgium there's a legal minimum planting distance from a boundary of 60cms for hedges and 2 metres for trees.   2m height maximum for a hedge.   Seems reasonable to me.

Pruning Roses

Posted: 14/11/2015 at 16:55

Yes, cut back the longer stems by a third to a half now to reduce possible wind damage.  Leave the serious pruning and shaping till spring.

In Feb or March, when the worst frosts are over and none is forecast for a few days, cut out all dead, damaged and spindly stems to their base.   For the remaining stems, cut each one back to an outward facing bud, cutting just above and at an angle so that raindrops don't sit on the wound and encourage rotting.   Leave the centre of the rose as open as possible as this encourages air flow and reduces the risk of disease.

When done, feed the plants generously with slow release blood, fish and bone and/or a specialist rose food.   Mulch the roots with some well rotted garden compost of horse manure if you can get it and give occasional liquid feeds of rose or tomato food from March till the first flowers open.   Keep dead-heading all spent flowers throughout the season to encourage new buds to form and your roses should keep flowering into November or December depending on the weather conditions. 

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