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Latest posts by obelixx


Posted: 28/07/2015 at 15:25

It almost did for my Kiftsgate but one stem survived and has now regrown to start covering the house again.  This is 6 years later.



Posted: 27/07/2015 at 22:47

I agree, local is the way to go.

I used to buy bare root roses form David Austin but found that some varieties turned out to be too wussy for my local conditions and struggled with the long, wet winters and deep cold spells.  Now I buy potted DA roses for the same price from a rose  nursery in the Ardennes on the grounds that anything he can grow outdoors all year can cope with my garden.  Even then it seems my conditions are more extreme so I've had to rescue some from the beds and into pots to nurture along.  All are responding well.

The good doers are Gertrude Jekyll, Sceptr'd Isle, Falstaff, Teasing Georgia, Queen of Sweden, Jacqueline Dupré, Generous Gardener and Constance Spry plus a Kiftsgate and a few ground cover roses whose names I've lost.

The wusses are William Shakespeare, Geoff Hamilton and Munstead Wood, Graham Thomas and one of my two Benjamin Britten's.   Molyneux, Guinée and New Dawn turned up their toes in a long 3 week frost going below -20C every night.

RHS Plant Finder

Posted: 27/07/2015 at 17:13

The RHS Plant Selector will help you find plants for a given situation and allows you to enter soil type, drainage, aspect, exposure, and then season of interest, colour, size, type of garden and type of plant.  It isn't foolproof but it's a good start.

Hosts question

Posted: 27/07/2015 at 15:08

I leave mine on till they're all over - bees love the flowers - and then take each stem out back to its base along with any leaves looking a bit tatty and then, if in pots, I give them a good drink and some liquid fertiliser.    Most of mine die down in October and I haven't specially noticed the blue leaves one going earlier.

Maybe Hostafan will pop in and help as she knows her stuff about hostas.

It was almost a perfect garden

Posted: 26/07/2015 at 17:41

Mien Ruys designed the gardens at Oostkerke near Brugge/Bruges in Belgium.  I went there with my garden group in June 2006.  Here are the photos if you're interested - 

We thoroughly enjoyed it.  She admired Gertrude Jekyll and was influenced by her in her own designs.   The little town at the end with the clever wellies is Damme.

Plant suggestions please!

Posted: 26/07/2015 at 15:02

Have you considered a daphne?  Daphne odora aureomarginata looks good - evergreen with variegation and scented flowers in spring. 

Or maybe good old choisya ternata Sundance for sunshine in winter and orange perfume when it flowers?

Or a self fertile variegated holly?

It was almost a perfect garden

Posted: 26/07/2015 at 14:55

It can be very disheartening Rinus.  Last year I came back from the Chelsea Flower Show to find a hailstone tornado had ripped through my garden shredding all my rhubarb and hostas, ripping clematis off their supports, decimating flowers and foliage, annihilating my baby veggies, chilies, toms and squashes and leaving great, pitted wounds on the stems of trees and shrubs and roses.

I felt almost paralysed for a week but gradually got all the damaged stems and foliage cut away and tidied up and everything did recover over the following months.   

Courage - as they say in this part of Belgium, or Sterkte as they might say in Flanders.



Garden produce recipes

Posted: 26/07/2015 at 14:42

We have soft fruit coming out of our ears at the mo so I have a pan of blackcurrants on the go to make spiced blackcurrant jelly which I know is delicious:-

1kg blackcurrants, 900ml water, 5cm cinnamon stick and either 12 cloves (I sometimes substitute 3 star anise for the cloves)  

Bring to the boil and simmer for one hour.   Strain through a muslin into a large bowl, pushing gently to extract the juice but not force it or it will go cloudy.  Add 200ml of cider vinegar and stir well.  Return the juice to a clean pan and add 450g of sugar for every 600ml.  Heat gently till the sugar is dissolved and then boil hard till setting point is reached.   Superb on croissants, fresh bread and toast, especially with cream cheese and can be used in sauces for meat and game, like redcurrant jelly but with more oomph.

I have another pan experimenting with redcurrant, orange and raisin marmalade and OH has just picked 2 huge mixing bowls worth of purple gooseberries from our two wee shrubs.  Heaven knows what they'll do when they mature!

I'm going to try gooseberry crème brulée tart which is a recipe I found on BBC Good Food and freeze the rest for later.

Plant suggestions please!

Posted: 26/07/2015 at 09:00

My twisted hazel is in the ground and, after about 10 years,is now about 3.5m high and wide and very dense.   It provides excellent cover for birds as it is next to my bird feeding station.

This year I shall be lifting the canopy and I have to remove straight stems from the base every year.   

With judicious pruning it would look great in a big container but eventually it will want to grow bigger.   Maybe occasional root pruning would control that urge.

Mowing thrills and spills!

Posted: 25/07/2015 at 11:58

Sweet chestnut trees can be the devil for ride ons.  The spikes on the chestnuts hiding in the grass are strong enough to prang tyres.   Repetitively expensive till I decided to leave that grass long and make it a meadow.

Don't have any in this garden and won't in my next.

Discussions started by obelixx


Horticultural Retail Therapy 
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Last Post: 03/10/2015 at 15:29


Horticultural Retail Therapy 
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Phuopsis stylosa aka Crosswort

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Lawn care after moles

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Plant id for Obxx

Who knows what this is please? 
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Last Post: 03/10/2015 at 12:49

GW 2015

Programme content discussion 
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Chelsea photos

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Last Post: 02/06/2014 at 09:30

Hello Jro - and any other old friends

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Mare's tail

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Encouraging bats in our gardens

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Last Post: 26/04/2013 at 21:35

Beechgrove this weekend

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Last Post: 12/04/2013 at 11:05

Weekend 22 March

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

Good Morning - 21 March

Replies: 33    Views: 2279
Last Post: 22/03/2013 at 09:57

Choosing chillies

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Last Post: 23/02/2013 at 18:47

Hanging baskets and window boxes

Replies: 32    Views: 3351
Last Post: 03/03/2013 at 18:12
1 to 15 of 16 threads