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Latest posts by obelixx

Acer.. Japanese 🍁 in need of help

Posted: 30/04/2015 at 23:08

Those branches won't recover so remove them along with any other dead wood.  This may leave it looking a little unbalanced but don't trim any other branches till you see what new growth, if any, you will get this year.   Give the plant a feed of blood, fish and bone and make sure it has plenty of water in dry spells.

Make sure your plant gets a generous mulch of well rotted garden compost at its base every autumn as this helps with soil fertility and good root development to sustain the plant.

Frosted potato shoots

Posted: 30/04/2015 at 23:02

We have a huge arable field behind us.   Potatoes this year - planted only last week so they avoid frosts.    Quite a process with two tractors going round twice in two different directions to harrow the soil and break it up for the very fancy tractor that makes the trapezoid furrows, neat as a sandcastle made with damp sand and with a potato buried deep at the base.

 I shan't be growing tomatoes outside this year then.

Dividing Bridal Wreath

Posted: 30/04/2015 at 18:24

If you mean the shrub spiraea then no, you can't split the stem and roots but you can take softwood cuttings in summer to make new plants.

Many spiraeas sucker and produce new plants from spreading roots.  If yours is doing this you could dig up the suckered shoots and either replant straight away in well prepared soil or pot them up in good quality compost and grow them on till you're sure they're OK before planting out in your borders. 

Drooping acer leaves

Posted: 30/04/2015 at 13:18

Have a read of this and then check your plant for symptoms -


Trimming Young Leylandii

Posted: 30/04/2015 at 12:35

I have always understood that conifer hedges should be allowed to grow to 6 to 12 inches - 15 to 30cms - above the final desired height and only then be cut to the same distance below the desired height.    They will then thicken up and can be trimmed once a year to keep them neat.

Trimming the sides is a good idea to help them make dense growth but don't cut into brown wood, just do regular, light trims of the two sides.  Do not trim between the plants or you'll just get a row of columns.

When you do trim the sides, do it at a very slight angle tapering inwards towards the top.  This helps them shed heavy snow in bad winters and saves them from having bent and broken branches.

dull choisa

Posted: 30/04/2015 at 12:29

Give it a good general purpose food such as blood, fish and bone and some well rotted garden compost and/or horse manure in its planting hole and backfill mixture and as an annual mulch in autumn.    

For an occasional tonic to help the foliage stay looking good water all over the plant with a solution of 1 tbs/15ml of Epsom salts dissolved in 1 gallon/5 litres of water.  Sprinkle on using the rose on the watering can so it can be absorbed directly by the leaves.   This is a good tonic for all evergreen plants but for ericaceous plants be sure to use rain water if your tap water is hard.

Why plant daffs in October?

Posted: 29/04/2015 at 12:52

Your neighbour was lucky.  His bulbs could have dried out, gone mouldy or turned to mush if they'd been badly stored and he'd have lost most if not all.

Daffodils in the ground start putting out their roots towards the end of August.   This helps rehydrate them ready for pushing up their shoots when soil temps are right for them and they will produce better flowers in the long run.   the big hyrbid tulips, on the other hand, are more at risk from the tulip fire virus if planted too early so late November is best for them.

Make sure he doesn't cut off the foliage too early and encourage him to feed them with a general purpose fertiliser such as blood, fish and bone or pelleted chicken manure. 

Anyone done any gardening today?

Posted: 28/04/2015 at 23:36

Carried on revamping the damp bed (6m long by irregular 2 to 4 metres wide) after taking two small conifers out of there a couple of weeks ago to make a new conifer bed elsewhere.   Needed to referee hostas, ligularias, astilboides, hellebores and primulas so loads of plants emptied out, cleaned of weeds, divided as appropriate and bunged back in with loads of lovely garden compost.

Still have half the bed to mulch with compost and loads of snowdrops and daffs to go back in plus homes to find for hemerocallis and lily of the valley and some hostas.

Good day.

"The Blues"

Posted: 28/04/2015 at 23:25

My blues are hyacinths, anemone blanda, forget-me-nots, brunnera and pulmonarias in spring.  I have one with a rich deep blue flower and silvery leaves but don't know its name.  Then geraniums Johnson's Blue and Rozanne, Clematis Perle d'Azur, echinops ritro, eryngiums, plus some comfrey like plants I was given and can't name.  I used to have 3 different agapanthus ranging from light to mid to deep blue but they were killed off by a hard winter.

Last year I sowed anchusa and am now waiting to see them flower.   


Posted: 28/04/2015 at 22:02

Primulas too and hakonechloa grass.  I have hellebores in a north facing bed that gets some sun form April to September but none at all from October to March.

Mine is a damp bed so also astilbes, stilboides, ligularia, chelone, hostas big and small, Japanese anemones, ferns but for your raise dbed you could also try snowdrops, lily of the valley, daffs, pûlmonaria, aquilegia, hemerocallis, hardy fuchsias, bergenia.  

Good roses would be Falstaff, Golden Showers, New Dawn all of which repeat.   Any number of clematis will love it as long as you feed them generously every spring with proper clematis food.

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