Latest posts by Obelixx

Failed Butternuts!

Posted: 04/10/2017 at 15:39

Lack of pollination and then a poor summer.  Butternut, even those good for the UK, need a lot of sun I find.

Pricing structure

Posted: 04/10/2017 at 14:35

In that case, all you can do is base yourself on what some of them are willing to pay - the ones who already pay more.  If you think that will lose you some clients you want to keep, adjust accordingly.  Don't tell you clients till nearer the time, when they've recovered from Xmas and all that expense.

The main thing is to make sure you earn enough to live - housing, food, heat, transport, taxes.......

Pricing structure

Posted: 04/10/2017 at 13:42

It depends on your clients and the area in which you operate.  Why not phone around the competition, pretending to be a prospective client, and find out their rates?  or look in local ads?

Hebe Protection over Winter

Posted: 04/10/2017 at 13:16

Just make sure you don't wrap the plant in plastic.  They need ventilation or they'll rot.  If you're worried, take cuttings.

with 25yrs of mulching why is my clay soil no improving

Posted: 04/10/2017 at 13:01

I have friends who bought a one hectare plot of heavy clay covered in tatty old pines, tatty old birch trees and riddled with bracken and brambles and other unspeakable nasties.   They had help clearing old trees and started digging out beds less than 10 years ago while builders did the house.   They now have the most amazing garden full of beautiful trees, shrubs, perennials, climbers, water features and bulbs.

This is it 18 months ago - view as a slideshow if you don't have adblock installed.


Every year she buys 100s of bulbs for autumn planting and pots for him to plant and he orders a lorry load of council compost which he has dumped in the drive and then barrows it out to the ornamental borders after the bulbs and any new trees and shrubs have gone in.  He lays it on several inches thick on the ornamental garden but uses his own compost on the veg plot as it is regularly hoes to deal with weeds from seeds.

He only digs when creating another bed or planting a new tree or shrub but has found that the consistency and fertility of the soil has improved immeasurably over the years.

This garden is now open under the Belgian Open Gardens scheme and regularly features on their equivalent of GW and in magazines.

Getting a Poinsettia to flower

Posted: 04/10/2017 at 12:50

The article says at least 4 weeks.  You are being a tad impatient.

Having said that, they are so cheap to buy nearer Xmas why not just start again?  Put your time and effort into more rewarding plants.

Dog proofing a new beech hedge

Posted: 04/10/2017 at 12:47

I agree with FG.  You took down the existing hedge, knowing there were dogs next door.  It is up to you to live with the consequences and take precautions to protect your garden and plants from unwanted visitors.   I would certainly take dim view if our neighbours took down the fences between us and then complained that our dogs were harrying their horses and cattle.

A chicken or even a stronger wire mesh fence won't cost a lot and will make for good neighbourly relations which can be beyond price.

What is the best Clematis to grow up a Yew

Posted: 04/10/2017 at 12:39

Good question FG.   Yew are usually trimmed in late summer to autumn and the latter time would not affect a group 3 clematis as they flower on new growth made from spring.

Renovative pruning for yews - hard pruning in effect - is best done in spring which would also give a group 3 clem time to do its thing.   Fond memories of Chris Beardshaw in Hidden Gardens hacking the bejabers out of a yew hedge.  Pity we never got a return visit to see the results.  Time for another series to catach up?

In case of doubt, this is what the RHS says - https://www.rhs.org.uk/advice/profile?PID=729 

starting a plot from scratch: realistic?

Posted: 04/10/2017 at 11:30

I think an allotment, especially if it is to be organic, is a long term commitment as you strive to get the soil and conditions and fertility and crop rotations right for things too grow well.

However, in a year you can still achieve quite a lot and get some returns.   Beg, borrow, hire or buy a strimmer to cut down all the long grass and weeds but be careful to leave anything perennial and good such as fruit bushes, strawberries, asparagus, artichokes.

Then put down a layer of cardboard on the rest and pile on well-rotted compost and/or manure or bought in mushroom compost or council tip compost as you can.  Make it a few inches deep.   The cardboard will keep the light off weed seeds and roots below and will also break down naturally without pollution.  This method will save you lots of digging and allow you to plant quickly.  Watch last week's episode of Beechgrove Garden on-i-Player but be quick before it's replaced.  It has a slot on no-dig veg plots and how they crop better.

Then you can plant Japanese onions to grow over winter and produce a crop next July, winter brassicas such as kale, purple sprouting broccoli, spring greens and maybe even some sprouts if you like them.  Leeks can go in now and also garlic.

What is the best Clematis to grow up a Yew

Posted: 04/10/2017 at 11:13

Not just Lancashire.  My Huldine in Belgium had good years and bad years but always some flowers and they are lovely.

Very few clems on sale round here but if I find a Huldine I'll plant it and let you know how it does in sunshine.

Discussions started by Obelixx

SOS Allotments appeal

Petition to save allotments in Huddersfield 
Replies: 14    Views: 320
Last Post: Today at 09:31

Wisley safe - for now

Threatened by plans to widen the A3 
Replies: 6    Views: 440
Last Post: 08/12/2017 at 16:45

Taxonomists and name changes

When did this happen? 
Replies: 51    Views: 1924
Last Post: 15/11/2017 at 16:37

Sphaeralcea - globe mallow

Anyone grow this? 
Replies: 0    Views: 247
Last Post: 26/10/2017 at 17:43

Garden visits - Asphodèle group, Vendée

Photos of two very different gardens visited on 17/10 
Replies: 16    Views: 619
Last Post: 24/09/2017 at 20:02

Loire chateaux

Pics of a few chateaux and grounds 
Replies: 12    Views: 502
Last Post: 09/09/2017 at 19:19

Hello Forkers ... September edition

A friendly place of frolics and conversation where everyone is welcome to join in to chat and procrastinate to their heart's content... 
Replies: 1326    Views: 40946
Last Post: 01/10/2017 at 10:13

Who's nicked my figs?

Mystery fig disappearance 
Replies: 10    Views: 397
Last Post: 11/06/2017 at 09:04

Snake ID please

Found canoodling in the sun but what are they? 
Replies: 4    Views: 487
Last Post: 03/06/2017 at 09:22

Clematis ID

Can you name this clematis? 
Replies: 9    Views: 489
Last Post: 20/05/2017 at 14:26

Feeble hyacinths or Spanish bluebells?

Opinions please 
Replies: 6    Views: 401
Last Post: 06/04/2017 at 17:42


Erection and siting 
Replies: 4    Views: 442
Last Post: 18/02/2017 at 17:32

Cutting garden

Tips please 
Replies: 22    Views: 1862
Last Post: 08/06/2017 at 22:33


What to do with them 
Replies: 11    Views: 666
Last Post: 14/11/2016 at 21:06

Weather station

Recommendations please 
Replies: 2    Views: 515
Last Post: 08/11/2016 at 14:53
1 to 15 of 36 threads