Latest posts by Palaisglide

Raised Flower Beds

Posted: 14/05/2015 at 13:35

Who ever said gardening is easy, short cuts and easy ways usually lead to twice the work later, do it once correctly and save your back is my way. Lifted turves can be stacked left to mature and used later. Soil dug out can be cleaned and put back though when I had raised boxes there was plenty of drainage in the base. Fill the box with old compost then top off with good topsoil or compost leaving room to top up or mulch.

gardening will never be easy which is why little and often with a sit in the sun glass in hand is so relaxing, you plan your next project knowing it may well include double digging removing all weeds and probable some building included. Do it right, do it once.


Raised Flower Beds

Posted: 13/05/2015 at 15:11

Why risk it? cut the turves, lift them  and hide in a corner behind a bush for a year, you will get good seed compost once seived.  When setting up the bed put some drainage in the base before filling. Use old potting compost to fill half the base then good topsoil leaving it low in the bed so you can mulch or top up.


what compost ?

Posted: 13/05/2015 at 15:00

Granma, try my way, seeds will strike in sand as they do not need feed. Buy a bag of JI NUMBER TWO MIX it is loam based, a bag of washed sand and one of small grit. Mix one scoop of sand one of grit and one of JI compost. Sow seed water from below. Pot on with half same JI compost, quarter sand quarter grit, pot on again into ordinary potting compost.

That method has worked for years, no losses and good plants. Since the greens won with no peat compost has been made from all kinds of waste. We do not know what is in it or how it is sorted, I have found plastic glass and what looked like bone in some of it so now serve it. Grit helps drainage and more seeds die from over watering than anything else. Hope this helps.


VE Day

Posted: 08/05/2015 at 19:31

True Barry, everyone was sick of the war, men and women came back took off the uniform and got on with life. If anyone mentioned the war a cry went up "swing the lamps lads" it was frowned on so people kept quiet.

I was in the army after the war ended or so we thought, coming home on leave after two years the lads I had known but not joined up were still school boys. They greeted me with " all right for you swanning about in the sunshine chasing good looking camels" stuck it for a week and went back to my unit early. Those men and women away often for five or more years must have thought returning home an alien world, it would take a lot of getting used to and many never did. The divorce rate went very high in the forties and fifties.


VE Day

Posted: 08/05/2015 at 16:45

Dove, I can imagine your Mum's excitement as she watched the Royals and Winston Churhill on the balcony, we worshiped Winston and Respected the King and Queen for staying with us. We saw it on Pathe  News at the Cinema a few days later.

Thank you for your thoughts Beaus Mum, have been very busy lately getting the garden back after last years little mishap. Believe it or not I got a new kitchen, new TV and new car all within a month, my Daughters obviously shaken at what happened in August told me to lash out, enjoy your money and do Not spend it all on the garden. Watched the ceremony on TV very low key in my opinion but then the modern politico's are too busy apologising for what my generation did. We did not start it, nearly lost it, took years of danger and hardship and won through, apologise, me, not on your nelly.


Fresh new leaves in between rhododendron flowers

Posted: 07/05/2015 at 15:28

Carole, leave it, the only thing you need do is once the flowers have died back pull of the old buds that are left, the old flower in other words. My Rhododendron is an old one planted in earth which needs to be acidic mulching with peat will do you can still get peat though some will jump on me saying it is ruining the planet. I can think of plenty of other things that will ruin the planet faster.

you will need to pot on at some time if there's not room to plant in soil, the best time is just after flowering. They like semi shade Not full sun and last for years, mine is nearly thirty, a slight trim every few years and a mulch once a year is all it needs.


VE Day

Posted: 07/05/2015 at 15:13

Hello Beaus Mum, yes it meant everything to us people who had gone through the war. We went from expecting an invasion at any time, through nearly two years of nighttime raids and most nights in the shelter, still had to be at school on time even when the bus could not get to the school because of damage. The long drawn out years of rationing, helping to grow our own food and harvest it instead of holidays lazing about, indeed when the time came we let our hair down and how.

The war was not over on May 8th it went on in the Far East until August so we still had hardship and rationing until 1952. The party went on for three days in our area then back to the grind, I will never forget the total euphoria and for our tea on VE Day mother dug out from her secret hoard Peaches and Carnation milk, a rare treat indeed.

A very unforgettable memory burnt into my brain and for all those who lived it total relief though we still had relatives fighting.


Stock cubes

Posted: 01/05/2015 at 13:53

Salt gets a bad name yet we cannot live without it, for two years in the Middle East we had a daily ration of salt tablets as well as the Mepokrin, it was classed as self inflicted wounds if you became ill due to salt shortage. It took a week of daily rubbing to salt a side of bacon or a ham and that crisp salt bacon was my breakfast every day plus fried bread, why am I still here? 

Sodium Chloride or Halite as we knew it at ICI is either brine washed up from salt rock laid down millions of years ago or mined from those same rock deposits. Dried sea salt is exactly the same and all of it has additives, they make it free flowing also having natural fluoride more is often added plus iodine show me so called pure salt and I fall about laughing. Bacon and hams are pressure salted to speed up the process as the old methods took too long, the difference being a pan full of water or crisp salty bacon depends on natural cure or t'other one.

all stock cubes have added salt, my stock pan often gets some neck of mutton in with the veg, cooled sieved and put in the freezer you are never short of stock and the mutton makes lovely soup. "Oh" and all your gravy granules are mainly salt with flavourings, I worked in Cerebos and saw it all.


Music in the Garden

Posted: 29/04/2015 at 12:19

David, we are what we were in our youth, mine was dance music, Henry Hall, Glen Miller, all the big bands even Victor Sylvester of course the classical music I played on piano. The modern stuff never struck a chord with me though my Daughters made my ears ache with it. My gardening was often the only way to escape the cacophony gardening in the dark on cold winter nights not recommended .

The halcyon days we are having in the NE these last weeks, sitting in the sun listening to gentle country style music, U tube has masses of music so choice, what gets posted on here is not doing it for me. The old top of the pops that BBC have been pushing lately show me why I do not like it.

Morning in the garden potting on, nice sunshine cold wind, penalty for living next to the North Sea.


Stock cubes

Posted: 29/04/2015 at 12:01

Some what baffled, all my left over veg goes into a pan with a pack of bacon bits and simmers (you can leave out the bacon) cooled drained then put in small containers there is always stock for soups mince or what ever, never tried it in rice pudding yet.

As a lad no fridges or freezers we used lots of salt to dry cure bacon pork ham, mother bottled made chutney and jam even preserving eggs ( hens awkward things that they are laid in season) They stock pot ran all week, who needed cubes.


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