Latest posts by Palaisglide


Posted: 20/05/2014 at 11:04

Dry sandy soil does not need peat, it wants plenty of part rotted compost, manure, Paper, Cardboard, self grown green fertiliser dug into it, digging peat in would be a waste of time money and something I miss badly for young plants having not found a good substitute, I do still manage to get some and the greens do not worry me, if big growers can still get it why not us old lads and lasses.

My Father had sandy soil I often pass that old garden and it still grows wonderful vegetables though Dad is long gone. We dug masses of straw mixed with manure into it every year and the soil was wonderful, Hard work required I know but in the end you will get there.



Posted: 20/05/2014 at 10:52

Italophile, Probably you are correct in Italy, here in the Northeast of England with one foot in the sea not so. They need a steady temperature plenty of TLC and liquid sunshine in the form of feed. Night temperature here can drop dramatically a green house is essential to try and keep even heat and my greenhouse being a lean to with a solid South facing brick wall manages to do that hence the tomato's are often weeks ahead of other growers. We garden to our own weather and conditions, In southern Europe I have seen tomato's grown as a field crop it could not happen here.

The ideal way is to grow more than you need then keep the strongest plants to grow on, that way you do not encourage disease, none of us want that among our lovely plants.



Posted: 20/05/2014 at 10:37

Rosemummy, Read your mail again and realised the established plants you have are older ones that need a bit of TLC. it will be next year now before they pick up although the foliage should be clean and shiny. If this is not so cut out any stalks of leaves that show disease browning shrivelling, once it has flowered remove the dead flower heads now to work. Make a mulch of compost, home made if you have it, add some bone meal and granular fertiliser, well rotted manure if possible for those that have it, most will not. Now put a thick mulch around the root ball but not touching it, never cover the top is my experience they do not like it, water in. Repeat that again late summer.

Spring cut down all the old foliage and lightly brush any debris away from the root, another mulch and it will be away growing its head off. Always stake and string the plant will grow through and cover it. They love South and West facing mine have that although the Rosa Plena is in a spot where it only gets the afternoon and evening sun, it thrives.

They can suffer Paeonia wilt, Brown spot and buds failing to open, the latter is usually to dry and not enough feed as with any plant water feed cleanliness are essential.



Posted: 19/05/2014 at 23:55

Rosemummy Paeonia is the given name although it should be "wait for it" Paeoniaceae and was once called Ranunculaceae. now most people say Peony.

The red ones will be Rubra-plena once called Officinalis but they have been superseded by crosses. How old are the plants they take years to grow and I have a Rubra put in four years ago that has produced just three large beautiful flowers this year, that was after I threatened it. The original Rubra 20 years old has masses of flowers ready to open. I also have Rosa -Plena a delicate pink with white edges which will come into flower after the Rubra.

I do not know the Sarah Bernhardt but what you describe will take three years minimum to flower and probably longer, these are long lived plants and need time to settle and build up root before they will start flowering, well that is my experience over very many years. A late snap frost could have damaged the flowering bud you can only wait and see. This forum is to answer questions from people with problems, if we were not happy answering we would not be here so ask away.

Peanuts3 Stake your plant and scrape away the soil on the top of the root ball though I would raise it now. Take as big a root ball as you can and gently lift then prod plenty of rich compost under and tamp it down, more rich compost around it and tread it in then water freely, keep it staked. Three or four canes around the plant with interwoven string will keep it safe. Make sure the original top of the root ball is clear and when feeding or mulching add it in a ring about a foot from the plant. I leave the foliage on the plant over winter as a frost guard and clear it away in Spring.


Music in the Garden

Posted: 19/05/2014 at 19:34

Yarrow2, Told you I loved her and so did Dad so I got dragged to see all her pictures from being a pup. The film you are talking about was a wartime one called His Butlers Sister, but favourites were Cant help Singing, Mad about Music (who isn't) Three Smart Girls. She broke my heart when she stopped making musicals some where in the late 1940's. The correct name by the way was Deanna Durbin and the other one is Andre Rieu I have some of his discs and DVD's.

Joan once dragged me kicking and screaming into a puppet theatre in Salzburg, it just was not me, I had the best night ever, it was a wonderful experience. We danced our way round Austria quite a few times often with requests for us to demonstrate what they called the English Waltz, the night in Vienna came right out of the blue, we shot on the floor as the leader raised his baton and did a solo, why, did they think we were part of the show? we were in best bib and tucker. As I said the place was jam packed yet when we went on the floor again it partly cleared and we got space to Viennese Waltz, glorious memories.  Something similar happened in Munchen, we had been up dancing a couple of times then we got up and the floor was empty they stood around and watched, we were told later the German Waltz was staid they all did the same moves we rang the changes, the English way they called it. I think I remember it as the free drinks flowed, I do not know who held who up as we made our way to bed.

My Granddaughter 4 was here today we were out in the garden and she sang to me, every word of a pop song and all the expressions, music is for all ages.



Posted: 19/05/2014 at 15:07

Rosemummy, 1) Seeds do not need strong compost, mix  some fine compost with grit and washed sand about one third of each, sow the seed, always read the packet some seeds need to be deep some barely covered, water from the bottom and they need warmth a window sill or greenhouse. 2) like babies they need weaning, you cannot put them onto rich compost, as soon as they show two proper leaves move them on, a mix of half compost half sand and grit, when they have a true leafy top then pot them on into larger pots of compost with some sand and grit. 3) harden off the plants, put them out during the day cover at night for a couple of weeks then plant out.

I know you are a busy lady but seeds and seedlings need attention you cannot leave them or they are gone. The best way for you would be to sow just enough in a pot so you can get it on a window sill then prick out as soon as the two true leaves show, keep watering from the bottom (stand in a dish until the top shows damp) over watering will kill anything except pond weeds. Little and often is better than a lot and no time to prick out or pot on, a waste of time and money, it is OK for us old retired  lads we have time some people do not, so cut your coat as they say up here.



Posted: 19/05/2014 at 10:09

Lisa, Tree Paeonia are the same genus as floral or bush Paeonia and need the same treatment.

Always keep the root ball at the same level, do not cover with soil or mulch, scatter it and fertiliser around the root ball about a foot away. They do not like to be moved and will sulk for a couple of years then suddenly flower as one of mine did, it nearly got thrown out, mind I do talk to them, "Flower this year you @------ or you are on the compost" it worked. They can be damaged by late frost they will not then flower. They love full sun though will take partial shade and they are hungry beasts so a nice rich mulch around but away from the main root stock is needed.

They are wonderful flowers I love them and have them covering a period of time with different types though with the bush type stake them as a shower of rain soaking the large flower then a gust of wind will flatten them, who said gardening was easy?



Posted: 19/05/2014 at 09:52

Rosemummy, Tomato seeds need a steady warmth, window sill or green house and mine get bottom heat from a sand bed. An East facing plastic tent which you say you leave open is not the place.

It is really too late now for your seedlings but keep trying and as suggested buy a couple of plants for early tom's, put them round the other side among the Paeonia somewhere, they will have more chance.


Watering can that won't drown seedlings and plants

Posted: 19/05/2014 at 09:44

Like Andy I water from the bottom as watering can roses do tend to leak big drops and also have a large spray which is pumped up to pressure, the nozzle can be set from very fine to deluge. Even using the can on pots and baskets I water onto the soil though will use the fine spray of the bottle on the foliage early morning not in full sun.

A good metal watering can will have a welded Rose or two, fine and more open, it is all down to what you are prepared to pay.



Posted: 18/05/2014 at 10:30

Rosemummy Do not move Paeonia yet September is the proper time though I have moved them when it has been urgent. East facing early sun is not good for them as early morning frost would be melted off too quickly and damage the flowers, mine are in full bloom, well some of them and we do get early frosts up here.

Prepare the ground before a move with plenty of compost and a dressing of bone meal. Cut round the root taking as large a root ball as you can handle and replant, they will take semi shade though a west or south west facing position is best. Make sure you place the surface of the root ball at exactly the same height as it was previously, in other words do not put a covering of compost on it, heel in and water in and then sit back, they sulk not liking being moved, one of mine did not flower for three years, I was about to dig it out and this year it is a mass of blooms.

I have them over thirty years old and one is a cutting from a huge bushy plant there in my childhood and my Dad's we reckon over one hundred years old, growing up with them they are my favourite flower though short lived and prone to being blown about they make me smile.


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