Shrinking Violet

Latest posts by Shrinking Violet

What's the weather like in your area?

Posted: 17/09/2012 at 17:42

Bright but cloudy at times, with a cool breeze.  Perfect for getting into the garden.  Neighbour wanted to know how to take cuttings, since I had picked the perfect penstemmons for her that she bought at Rosemoor ie there were plenty of side shoots and cuttings material.  Gave a "master class"  on the art of cuttings, and was then inspired to take some more in my own garden.  Just hope they take: the clematis cuttings I took a few weeks back have rooted nicely.  Plants for free - love 'em! 

And talking of free - I bought five Primula Candelabra a couple of years ago.  Split them today - and found 20!  Quite a good return - they're not cheap to buy.  And I'm still hopeful that the seed I sowed will germinate a la Klein.

What's the weather like in your area?

Posted: 16/09/2012 at 22:46

Put your feet up and relax then Frank.  Honey and sugar-glazed ham is lovely - and lots of cold cuts (well, there are in this house when I do it!)

Funny old world, this virtual message board lark.  Getting locked out for no reason is frustrating.  Could be worse - we both of us remember the worst of the Beeb boards, which rather coloured perception of all that was good!

That said, I have to say this is a friendly board - and we don't see lots of modded posts, often for little or no reason!  (I just hope I haven't put the hex on it by saying that!)

Tulips:  the older I get, the more I relish a real blast of colour in the spring.  I can admire Monty's restrained colour palette, but don't want to replicate it.  I want lots of vibrant colours (white, cream and lemon yellow just don't do it for me), and tulips are perfect for providing a real statement.  I'm already looking forward to next year, since I shall plant some in pots that can, if necessary, move with us, as well as the bedding varieties that may be left behind.

What's the weather like in your area?

Posted: 16/09/2012 at 19:25

Hello Frank - seems I'm unlocked from the virtual "norty corner"

It's Sunday - and we have no news of your Roast of the Day.  Shame on you - we look forward to salivating as you describe your culinary arts.  (MasterChef eat your hearts out, that's wot I say!)

It's been fine and dry here - a bit cloudy at times, but perfect for starting to clear some of the borders.  We are still hoping to move - but no takers at the moment   Seems like the market has ground to a halt.  So I'm trying to keep things looking good, without spending too much!  Cheapskate or what?

It's amazing how "old" seed performs (very well this year!) and I'm keeping things tidy and presentable.  I've also bought some cheap bulbs from Poundland (10 bulbs that cost - guess how much?)  Anyway - I'll put them in, and if we're still here, we'll enjoy them.  If not, then someone else will get the benefit, but without too much expenditure on my part.  (Last year I planted some tulips - and they weren't cheap - that were meant to be a deep, burnt-orange.  They were peach  Looked OK by not the colour combo I was aiming for).



What's the weather like in your area?

Posted: 15/09/2012 at 22:21

Hello from cloudy/sunny/occasionally rainy Somerset.

The Board-Meisters seem to have locked me out from this thread for the past few days - well, unless I wanted to scroll manually through the hundreds of posts!  I couldn't make the "first unread post" link work at all.  Seems to be working OK now - but if you don't hear from me, you'll know I've been sent to some norty corner in the sky  (that's what it feels like, anyway!)

Quite a nice day today:  sunny spells with a warmish breeze.  Finally got round to planting forced hyacinths which may be ready for C.  We'll see - last year's were ready on time - but a totally different colour from the pack.  This year I've gone back to basic blue - so fingers crossed!


Wartime Farm

Posted: 13/09/2012 at 22:15

Watched it and found it fascinating again. 

I knew about hay-box cooking, but prefer the convenience of my slow cooker .  But it all brings home to us just how tough things were - and this representation is at the beginning of the war, before things got even harder.

And I have learnt just how the rationing of meat worked.  I'd never given it much thought - hadn't considered all the actual administration by the butcher, so it was a surprise to learn that it was done on price rather than weight.  It makes sense, really, but it had never occurred to me that that would be the mechanism for rationing. 

Oh, and do I presume that they've just given farmers a way to remove the dye from red diesel so it can be used on the road???  Though maybe it's a different dye, and bread filtering doesn't work with modern diesel  

What's the weather like in your area?

Posted: 10/09/2012 at 22:18

Cloudy all day - and, yes, it has rained intermittently. 

The Games have held us all mesmerised - but Strictly will doubtless occupy our minds and our time for a while.  I just hope that it doesn't creak along with silly non jokes and fake arguments between the judges.  It was good when it was fresh and new - but rather disappointing last season.  But two of our Olympians are taking part, so we'll see how it pans out. 

It runs until Christmas - and I can't get my head round that one!  I am still hoping for an Indian summer so I can get into the garden a bit more!


Posted: 10/09/2012 at 17:16

I hope it goes well for you.  I re-read my previous post, and it did sound a bit imperious!  Sorry - but the advice was, I trust, helpful.

May I add that it would probably not be a good idea to re-plant with another forsythia in the same ground.  I see from an earlier post you thought you might extend the flower bed - so good luck with that.  Do let us know how you get on.


Posted: 09/09/2012 at 23:50

Tiny red dots = coral fungus.  Out with it instantly.  Dig over the soil and improve by adding compost or leaf mould.  Don't leave it to see what will happen - things need to be addressed, and the sooner the better!  Btw I found that the roots of a poorly forsythia were not that difficult to get out and deal with.  For all that it can become a large shrub, the root system is not that deep/extensive.  Well - mine wasn't, anyway!  Good luck!

Wartime Farm

Posted: 09/09/2012 at 17:40

Even in the 1960s the hangover from the war coloured farming.  It's easy with hindsight to criticise the widespread use of pesticides etc etc, but doing 'O' level and 'A' level Geography, we were still being taught about the "virtues" of intensive agriculture etc and as we learnt about other countries in, for example, the Mediterranean area, we pitied their "backward" farming.

Hindsight is a wonderful thing.  But the real fear for the immediate future as experienced by Frank must have been terrible.  I think this series may show some of the difficulties experienced by a country dependent on Commonwealth imports.  I'm looking forward to the rest of the series.


Posted: 09/09/2012 at 16:49

I agree with Welshonion, I'm afraid.  Forsythia is prone to a certain amount of die-back in my experience.  And, yes, the rule of thumb of pruning about one third of a shrub each year is best but  you probably gave the poor old thing one helluva shock!

Best course of action is to know when to admit defeat - and some plants reach the end of their natural life, and need to be culled anyway.

Ask yourself if you really, really want forsythia.  It is a wonderfully bright harbinger of spring.  And dull, dull, dull the rest of the year, imo.   I didn't weep any tears when an inherited one turned up its toes on me! 

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