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Latest posts by obelixx

Who's eating the peanuts?

Posted: 13/01/2014 at 14:53

Rats more likely.  They don't hibernate - not in my garden anyway.  I hang assorted birdfeeders to restrict access and put limited amounts down for the ground feeding birds so there is little or nothing left each night for the rats. 

Great British Garden Revival

Posted: 13/01/2014 at 14:51

DK remembers those days.  I didn't start watching GW till 1983 when I got my first garden.  Learned loads from GH and started reading widely too and joined the RHS which is a great source of info and inspiration.    I enjoyed AT's period on GW but found far less that was relevant when MD took over but still enjoyed it for the most part.   Loathed the TB period.  Tend to regard GW as recreational these days and don't expect to find anything to do with my garden conditions.

Pitch Forks & flt tyned lifting forks

Posted: 13/01/2014 at 14:40

I am a Jack of all Trades and happily so.   I can garden and run a garden group though am not an expert, I can cook and bake but am not a trained chef, I can run a dance club without being a professional dancer and I can sew and do basic DIY and furniture restoring.   I'd be dreadully bored  - and much the poorer - if I had to rely on someone esle to do all this but will pay for expertise when I need it.

To go back to the original post, SR is not, in my view, a lawn expert and does not know her pitch fork from her elbow.   My lawn is not a sterile place as much of its green comes from clover, plantains, daisies and the occasional dandelion.   After rain we have blackbirds on it hunting for worms, fieldfares looking for chafer grubs and other birds grubbing about.  In dry weather I get green woodpeckers hunting ants and we also have moles which are less welcome.   It's an excellent surface for romping with the dogs and for Possum and her friends when they were younger and played outside.

I don't see the need for planting bulbs in grass unless you have rolling acres with shrubs and trees and find it looks less and less attractive during the 6 weeks the grass has to be left uncut to let the foliage replenish the bulbs for next year.  She didn't mention how long it takes for this long grass to recover and green up again once it's been cut as short of the rest of the lawn.   I'd rather have the bulbs in the borders where their foliage can stay on till dead but be disguised by other plants as they emerge in succession.   

SR should maybe stick to growing cut flowers and doing her flower arranging.


Where are my snowdrops?

Posted: 13/01/2014 at 09:42

I have snowdrops out in my sheltered south facing bed since the week before Christmas but none yet in the north facing garden despite all the rain we've had and the warm temps recently.   All of them have been established for years and come from a clump I found in the former potager when we moved here..

As said, dry autumn plantings rarely succeed but it helps to buy them the minute they go on display, soak them overnight in a bowl of cold water and then plant the following day.  I do this with firtillaria meleagris which have a smilar drying problem and it works most of the time.

Great British Garden Revival

Posted: 12/01/2014 at 18:39

Given we have just 30 minutes, time spent on Nigel and on watching Monty parade around with his wheelbarrow in fuzzy focus is time lost.  Happy to see dogs and cats and chucks in a presenter's garden but not have them feature.   We get little enough practical content as it is.

Cytisus plant - will it recover?

Posted: 12/01/2014 at 11:27

I'd get rid and plant something with a longer season of interest.  Cytisus bloom for a couple of weeks if you're Lucky and then look desperately dull for 50 more weeks.   Try and find something with an extended period of interest such as evergreen foliage, spring bloosom, autumn berries, good autumn leaf colour, colourful winter stems..........

If you are determined to keep it, I would tip it out of its pot, check for snails and snail eggs, repot it in fresh compost and keep it outside in a sheltered spot where its root ball won't freeze.    Scatter some wildlife firendly slug and snail pellets around your pots and garden to prevent any further invasions.   Do that now and every week until late spring, early summer.  That way you'll catch the perishers as they emerge from hibernation or hatch from eggs and before they can either chomp on your treasures or breed.

What the heck - my purse isn't big enough - but one can dream

Posted: 12/01/2014 at 11:18

We've been having temps of 12 to 13 C so my hellebores have started a bit earlier than usual.  The foetidus have been flowering for weeks and the others have just started.   I have held off going out to cut off the old foliage as it was still looking healthy and I wanted it to protect the crown when the frosts do come.   This morning my world was crisp, white and glistening so I'll have to wait to see if it thaws before I go and check them..

veg garden planning software

Posted: 12/01/2014 at 11:10

Software can only ever be a guide as there are so many variables in soil, aspect, rainfall, latitude, exposure, warmer west or colder east and no matter how much theory you may have imbibed from reading, research and watching TV gardeners, the best knowledge comes from experience and practice, practice, practice.

Have a look at this almanac -

-  You'll need to adjust timings to where you are - earlier for deep south west, later for the north east.


There are many books that can help too.  The RHS has a good selection in the publications sections of its website with books on fruit, veggies, organics, planning and so on.    Got to your local Library and see what they have for some bedtime reading and check out local charity shops for gardening books.

Great British Garden Revival

Posted: 11/01/2014 at 17:49

I miss GH and his down to earth style on GW too and the joy of his series shown in on Ornamental Kitchen Gardens and Paradise Gardens was just amazing.    I thought AT's How to be a Gardener series was inspirational and had something for everyone from beginners to experienced amateurs.

I still Watch GW when it's on but with Monty at the helm I find it very rarely makes me itch to get out in the garden and tackle jobs or start a new project or try a new plant.   It's all too Monty-centric and not sufficiently tailored to Mr or Mrs average gardener and especially not for complete beginners who have to contend with limited knowledge and/or limited space/time/budgets.  He just seems tohave no clue as to how most people live and garden.

I just hope someone at the Beeb will commission a decent series on how, what and when to sow, plant, harvest, maintain, design, replant, propagate, prune, compost, recycle and all the other things gardeners love to do but also have to do to make an attractive garden and keep it looking good without a bottomless purse.

Great British Garden Revival

Posted: 09/01/2014 at 14:20

Gardens never look the same year round which is why we're advised to plant a variety to give year round interest.  The focus will naturally shift through the seasons starting with early spring bulbs and blossom through the exhuberance of early summer flowers, autum colour and winter evergreens and coloured stems and, if you're sheltered enough, some scented winter blooms.

I confess I fast forwarded through Dirmuid's glasshouses as my greenhouse is far too small for exotics to be given space when I need it to shelter treasures in winter.  It also gets far too cold for all that tender stuff and heating is not an option.

The shrub part wasn't bad but why, oh why, do these people have to shout and harangue with unnatural emphasis on every other word?  Why can't they talk to as though we're just having a conversation and exchanging information and views.  I find it very tiring.    Must be something the producers or directors ask for as even CB has started doing it and Monty Don's phrasing has gone all awry latterly too.

As others have said, more info on how, when and where would be good.   There are all sorts of plants I can't grow because my soil is too alkaline, though deep and fertile, and others I can't grow because it's too wet or too exposed or too cold in winter.   Must be the same for others maybe gardening on chalk or sand or high up and exposed or in frost pockets or mild and balmy..


Discussions started by obelixx

Chelsea photos

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New shed - any tips?

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Last Post: 12/01/2013 at 08:55
10 threads returned