Latest posts by Obelixx

Hello Forkers.....It's October!

Posted: 29/10/2017 at 11:58

No DL.  Not a chap with developed taste buds.  His BBQ was always beef burgers bought at the supermarket   His breakfast had to be white toast with home made marmalade which his wife did by blitzing ordinary oranges in a processor then adding sugar ad boiling till she got a semblance of marmalade.   His mother was a no nonsense frugal Yorks lass who did not waste money on fancy food.  I hope he at least dicovered marinaded ribs and so on in the USA!

I have used Guinness for beef in stout casseroles but prefer it in chocolate Guinness cake......     

My 4 kilos of quinces have boiled down to 3 litres of quince pieces in cinnamon spiced syrup plus enough left over for OH to finish off with his ice cream during the week.  I now have about 3 litres of chilli jam simmering and reducing.  Yum yum.

Hello Forkers.....It's October!

Posted: 29/10/2017 at 10:36

LP- have a lovely day.  Used to know a chap in Belgium who insisted on BBQing every Fraiday evening, whatever the weather.  Needed a large golf umbrella half the year but then they moved to Atlanta (coca-cola chappie) so I expect he could BBQ most days..

I have 4 kilos of quince in a preserving pan with lemon, sugar and cinnamon.  Not making jam.  Should be good with ice cream or in apple pies.  Now to start on chilli jam.

Coping with withdrawal symptoms

Posted: 29/10/2017 at 09:07

FG - I think this is about withdrawal symptoms form GW rather than gardening, unless someone out there really thinks you should only garden when Monty is there to remind you what and when to do!  That's more about BBC schedulers and Monty's contract isn't it?

Certainly for me, gardening only stopped in heavy rains, impossible winds or deep frosts - all of which were usually plentiful in the Belgian garden.  The only thing to stop me here is the lack of rain as this drought continues.   Heavy grey clouds all round today except for us, sitting in a pool of bright sun.

Pruning a young Japanese blossom tree

Posted: 29/10/2017 at 09:02

I would wait till after you've enjoyed all the blossom next spring and then prune the stems which are too long back to just above a leaf joint.   Make sure your secateurs are very clean and very sharp and, if the branch is long, remove half to two thirds of the length before making the final cut to help avoid splitting the bark and making an open wound.

It is tempting to do it when the tree is bare so you can see the shape more easily but, in fact, prunus trees are prone to a disease called silver leaf if pruned in winter so wait and do it between May and July.

Hello Forkers.....It's October!

Posted: 29/10/2017 at 08:56

There are advantages to being a small, nuclear family.  Limits the C shopping and, in any case, as OH and I have birthdays quite close we don't go overboard at Xmas.   We did go thru a phase of challenging ourselves to £10 for each other's prezzie Xmas and having a lovely, non-turkey feast with good wines.  It's been all about Possum for the last 20 odd years.

Bit of an itchy night again so I'm up late but on parade now to make chilli jam and preserve some quinces.

Hope you both enjoy your days Chicky and Busy.   I'd enjoy a long stroll along Portobello Rd too but am not interested in cuddling grandbabies just yet tho I cans see the appeal.

I hope your skinks are OK Pat and that you get your hill FG.   Be firm Hosta.  Chin up PDoc.  We're all rooting for you here.  Hi Joyce and Dove and everyone else who pops in.

Hello Forkers.....It's October!

Posted: 28/10/2017 at 23:19

Funnily enough one of the chaps yesterday was saying how amazing it is that National Trust properties like Sissinghurst - visited as a group by my new garden club - have volunteers who go and weed and prune.   Clearly not yet in the French psyche to look after one's heritage.   People in my former Belgian area are also deploring the state of their cemeteries and lack of maintenance by the local council.

How hard can it be to get together and organise a neighbourhood weed team?  

Mahogany seedlings

Posted: 28/10/2017 at 17:45

The real mahoganies all come from the swietenia species native to the Americas tho there are trees given that name in India, Ceylon, South Africa but of the khaya or other species.  You need to identify the correct botanical name for yours then google "name+cultivation" to see what soil it likes, whether it needs acidic conditions, how tender it is and what size it will eventually grow to.

I suspect that you will have to Bonsai them to keep them in the UK so you can bring them in out of frosts.

Coping with withdrawal symptoms

Posted: 28/10/2017 at 17:40

There's original!! 

Geoff Hamilton did a series on how to make/build/plant a paradise garden.  he built 2 - one on a budget for ordinary folk and one more elaborate and with fancier materials for those with deeper pockets.  You can still buy the DVD's and the books often turn up in charity shops.  Excellent value, especially the DVD which comes with the Cottage Garden series and the ornamental Kitchen Garden series.   Wonderful stuff.

I suspect Monty's version will be another tour round other people's gardens.

New topsoil is like cake mix

Posted: 28/10/2017 at 17:36

I agree.  You seem to have done very thorough preps and just been defeated by bad weather.   

Leave it now till spring when increasing sunshine will evaporate excess moisture and grass will get away faster.  Try sowing seed instead of laying turves.  It'll be cheaper and, since you can't walk on new turves for a few weeks anyway and they need copious watering, it'll probably be just as quick to sow seed suited to your soil.

The one consolation is that clay is really very fertile and does improve if you can add plenty of organic matter as a mulch on beds every autumn.  There are also plenty of plants that love clay and moisture retentive soils and will look great offset by your lawn when you do finally get one.

Hello Forkers.....It's October!

Posted: 28/10/2017 at 15:55

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