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Shrinking Violet

Latest posts by Shrinking Violet

What's the weather like in your area?

Posted: 07/05/2012 at 12:15

It poured with rain first thing
Which made the thrushes sing
"Wet. Wet. Wet."
Sun is now shining
Soon be gardening
Never fret!

(best I can do with today's weather!  Weeds grow no matter what.  <sigh>)

Talkback: Rabbits and myxomatosis

Posted: 06/05/2012 at 21:12

It is a dreadful disease, and a shame on the human race for inventing it and introducing it.  I didn't realise that it was much in evidence now - obviously I was wrong.

What I have noticed, though, is that with a return to a healthier population of rabbits in this neck of the woods, there are more buzzards than had been seen for many years.  Clearly, the food chain has been re-established, to some degree, at least.

btw I recall a book by Russell Braddon called "The Year of the Angry Rabbit".  He was an Australian author, who wrote this fictional work based on the problems of rabbits and of myxomatosis.  I don't know if it's still in print or available - but worth reading if you do come across it.  (It effectively highlights the unforeseen consequences of meddling with nature).


Posted: 06/05/2012 at 21:01

I use coloured plastic straws cut into shortish lengths.  Yes - really!

For example, in the GH when growing more than one variety/colour of the same plant, one label +pink straw = Tomato, Gardener's Delight.  All pots with pink straws are therefore effectively labelled at very little cost.  One label +blue straw = Tomato, Marmande.  All pots with blue straws are quickly identified and don't get confused with other tomato plants.

Works with all sorts of plants (white and pink lavatera, for example) where the seedlings are easily confused.

Save our bees

Posted: 06/05/2012 at 20:36

If anyone missed Countryfile this evening, there was a whole section given to the problems facing bee populations etc.  (You can probably catch it on iPlayer).

What I found surprising was the fact that the seeds of Oil Seed Rape were coated with systemic insecticide, which mean that pollinators were taking up the toxin when they did the job they were supposed to do ie pollinate the flowers to set seed.

What a crazy system!  Will follow the link and add my name to the petition btw.

Help Identifying self seeded plant

Posted: 06/05/2012 at 19:29

Clematis - the wild Old Man's Beard sort that you see in the hedgerows, I think.  (I have it in my front garden, and it's a bit of a thug tbh).

B&Q M.Purpose Compost Issues.

Posted: 05/05/2012 at 11:52

Crumbs!  That is a lot of compost - your garden must be huge - or perhaps you have an allotment?  But it has given me a thought:  too late perhaps for this year, but maybe the local Allotment Society might take a large delivery - I can but ask!

The wrong kind of birds

Posted: 05/05/2012 at 11:49

Hi Shazza - as it happens, I am a Parish Councillor, and I did raise this as an issue.  Corvids (rooks & crows etc) are partly protected, unless a case can be made to restrain their numbers,  But when a resident tried to do this, there was a huge outcry from all the bunny-huggers, and nothing came of it.

Personally, I think the numbers are getting out of control.  I wouldn't eliminate them, but I would favour culling them to reduce them;  it would seem that voices like mine are drowned out by others.

So - I am off to the local shops to look at the cage protection systems, which may have some effect - hopefully before the little birds are intimidated away for ever.

OH has also resurrected a heron scarer (makes a barking sound when a large object crosses its path) so maybe we'll crack this one!

Thanks for your input.

The wrong kind of birds

Posted: 04/05/2012 at 20:58

I had thought of these feeder-guards more for squirrel deterrence - but had overlooked the idea that they could also deter the *!^"*: rooks!  Off to GC tomorrow to rook-proof my bird feeders.

Many thanks for advice.

B&Q M.Purpose Compost Issues.

Posted: 04/05/2012 at 20:43

Sue Beesley aka Trillium I think?  So you post with serious provenance, having won Gardener of the Year (green with envy!)

I take your comments seriously, but have to report that locally (one GC six miles away and a couple of nurseries within an hour's drive - just) I have to go with what's available.  But I think I'll have a word with the owner who knows just how much patronage she gets from me!  (OH has no idea of my annual spend ) and see if things can't be improved for next year.

The wrong kind of birds

Posted: 04/05/2012 at 19:32

There is a large rookery at this end of the village.  The noise of them nesting I can (just about) cope with, but they raid the bird feeders.  They cannot perch on the seed feeders, but they try, flap wildly and do their best to break them.  Or at least to tip seed onto the ground.

I daren't put anything out for the ground feeding birds, since a swarm of rooks/crows (a veritable "murder" of the wretched things) will swoop down and take everything.

They deter the smaller birds, and with the yearly growth of the ever-increasing rookery, the numbers of smaller songbirds have diminished.

Any advice?

Discussions started by Shrinking Violet


Replies: 8    Views: 370
Last Post: 03/06/2014 at 22:38

All Things Bright and Beautiful

A new version 
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Last Post: 13/05/2014 at 21:25

Lawn disaster

Neighbour's "lawn" infested with wild garlic! 
Replies: 18    Views: 1366
Last Post: 05/04/2014 at 19:53


Paper White bulbs 
Replies: 8    Views: 540
Last Post: 07/11/2013 at 09:50

Fungus on peas

Peas are late this year - but are becoming covered in mould 
Replies: 8    Views: 614
Last Post: 27/08/2012 at 23:05

Weather Lore - and more

Seasonal sayings and country weather predictions 
Replies: 12    Views: 844
Last Post: 11/05/2012 at 09:30

The wrong kind of birds

Our bird feeder attracts lots of birds but . . . . .  
Replies: 45    Views: 8358
Last Post: 03/06/2014 at 08:58

Community Orchard

Ideas and funding for a small community project 
Replies: 2    Views: 597
Last Post: 17/04/2012 at 17:49
8 threads returned