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Latest posts by obelixx

Feeding birds Yes or No

Posted: 26/12/2014 at 10:46

I have built a simple square arch over 2 metres high - two fence posts with a bar screwed across the top with hooks for hanging feeders.   The rats never climb up and the cats can't pounce.   There's a twisted hazel nearby for cover when the sparrow hawk flies in.

However I also put loose seed down on a slab below for the ground feeders and rats do visit that from their burrows along the edge of the field behind.   When they get too cheeky I put down sachets of poison in the entrances to their burrow, especially now as they're thinking of going into breeding mode.

Has Anybody Got This Rose?

Posted: 26/12/2014 at 10:36

I bought Jacqueline Du Pré last year and have been very pleased - 

It is simple and elegant and the open flower attracts beneficial insects so triple pleasure as it has a pleasing perfume too.   The buds are palest pink but the flower opens white.

Where to put arch?

Posted: 26/12/2014 at 10:29

I think it will get lost all the way down the bottom so it should go at the start of the lawned area.  You'll also be able to grow a repeat flowering rambler such as Malvern Hills there and enjoy the flowers and perfume as you pass.   However, if your soil is light and sandy you'll need to did in an awful lot of well rotted manure and garden compost to give it the richness roses need.


Posted: 25/12/2014 at 01:43

We've never had a hailstorm that late either and certainly not one in tornado form. It was devastating.   Flattened my rhubarb, scalped and shredded my hostas and clems and so many other plants, wiped out most of my pumpkin, chilli and tomato babies and left pitted scars on roses' and other shrubs' stems and leaves.

Now to see what this winter throws at us.   




Posted: 24/12/2014 at 12:27

I have Limelight, Vanille Fraise, Pinky Winky, Rouge Diamant and another creamy one whose label has gone.  They are all in full sun on rich, alkaline loam on a clay subsoil.   This year they were hammered by a hailstone tornado in May but have recovered so I'm expecting reat things next year.

I get them froma  specialist grower at a plant fair here and the advice is to prune hard in mid February to early March and feed them a general fertiliser with some added rose food for flower power once growth starts.

I like these plants because they flower despite what winter throws at them and I like the cone shaped flower heads an dthe way the colour fades.  I did try the mophead/lacecaps but they were always frozen solid in winter and, whilsts they produced new stems every year they never survived to flower the following spring.


Posted: 23/12/2014 at 10:01

Mophead and lace cap hydrangeas flower on old wood so pruning them now or in spring will remove all the flowering wood.  If this is the kind you have and thay are too large, take out every other stem in early spring so you at least keep half the flowering wood.   Once they have flowered, you can cut back the rest to encourage new flowering wood to form.

If you have the paniculata kind you can prune them back quite hard in Feb or March and they will produce new wood that will flower in summer.   They thrive on being pruned as it makes them bushier and more sturdy.

Whichever kind you have, give them a generous feed of pelleted chicken manure and a liquid tonic of rose or tomato fertiliser in mid to late March as this will help with both stronggrowth and flowering.

Waterproof Garden Shoes

Posted: 22/12/2014 at 13:43

Or you could do this with your old wellies



Strictly 2014

Posted: 21/12/2014 at 13:19

I think Frankie has been technically better - and under marked - throughout the competition but that last night Caroline's showdance had the edge once the wind machine bit was over.   I very much liked the Fred and Ginger routine from Kevin and Frankie but a bit to long on the benches.   I also loved all the show dances being about dance and not acrobatics or props.

Simon and Christine's Argentine tango was amazing but probably not such a crowd pleaser as Caroline's Charleston.  Frankie's Paso was even better than the first time.    Great show, great series.

We'll be recording the Xmas show to watch later but OH says I'm not allowed to fast forward the Brucie bits.  Shame.


Gardeners who love their feline friends

Posted: 20/12/2014 at 11:39

I hope she beats her cancer Claire.  Our latest cat had polycystic ovaries when we got her to a vet to be sterilised.   We think she was about 5 and had had several broods of kittens.    Since then she's had two bouts of breast cancer so more surgery but she's fine now and has relaxed enough for us to be trusted to rub her tum and check regularly for new growths when she comes to us for cuddles.   Only took 2 years so she must have had a hard time with the people who eventually abandoned her.   



Posted: 20/12/2014 at 11:28

My comfrey has cream flowers with a purple tinge at the edges and spreads very easily so I always have spares for the compost heap and flwoers for the insects which love it.   I have never had problems with either cats or dogs and comfrey.

Discussions started by obelixx

Plant id for Obxx

Who knows what this is please? 
Replies: 5    Views: 182
Last Post: 01/07/2015 at 16:53

GW 2015

Programme content discussion 
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Last Post: 16/03/2015 at 18:44

Chelsea photos

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

Hello Jro - and any other old friends

Catch up chat 
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Last Post: 27/05/2013 at 09:18

Mare's tail

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Last Post: 01/08/2013 at 17:01

Encouraging bats in our gardens

Replies: 23    Views: 1462
Last Post: 26/04/2013 at 21:35

Beechgrove this weekend

Replies: 6    Views: 784
Last Post: 12/04/2013 at 11:05

Weekend 22 March

Chat about plans for the weekend 
Replies: 108    Views: 4169
Last Post: 24/03/2013 at 18:19

Good Morning - 21 March

Replies: 33    Views: 1934
Last Post: 22/03/2013 at 09:57

Choosing chillies

Replies: 3    Views: 1113
Last Post: 23/02/2013 at 18:47

Hanging baskets and window boxes

Replies: 32    Views: 2841
Last Post: 03/03/2013 at 18:12

New shed - any tips?

Replies: 24    Views: 12488
Last Post: 22/02/2015 at 15:50
12 threads returned