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somerset steve

Latest posts by somerset steve

11 to 13 of 13

Ideas required for climbers over metal archway

Posted: 14/09/2012 at 15:27

I have recently constructed a gothic style metal archway. I'm looking for 2 climbers to plant now and get them settled before winter so they get a head start for growth and flowers/fragrance next year.

Recently went to National Garden Show at Royal Bath & West showground in somerset where a clematis trader suggested that giving clematis a headstart is a good idea but i am now disappointed by the selection and quality at local garden centres of plants such as clematis, honeysuckle and jasmin.

I understand that this year the weather has been weird and as we are now in autumn the deciduous climbers will be starting their winter "hibernation" but most garden centres only seem to have dead or dying plants of the 3 varieties mentioned above.


1) does this matter greatly or should i just get some well suited plants to give a good spread of colour across the year and trust the root stock will refresh itself nxt spring?


2) wait til spring to re visit the local places to see their new stock?


any design ideas e.g. honey suckle graham thomas with a certain clematis would be greatly appreciated


somerset steve

Seeking help identifying my soil type

Posted: 25/04/2012 at 12:03

I think you may have a point with compact soil/subsoil...i have to admit to being a perfectionist generally speaking and so i have to keep telling myself that i'm not gonna get everything right first time plus i tend to go for immediate gratification in my gardening so i couldn't resist digging over the soil, adding peat free compost and planting alpines fairly quickly when i got going march time without thinking if adding compost which would help enrich the soil but also increase  water retention was the right thing to do.

Only time will tell i suppose but it is trial and error at the end of the day.

What confused me as well was whilst my soil felt gritty and crumbly ... i could roll it into a ball or sausage it more important to know the pH and drainage properties of a soil than its definite sandy/clay/chalky etc?

Seeking help identifying my soil type

Posted: 25/04/2012 at 11:14

I hope i have the right section of the forum but this is my first post!

I live on the mendips and therefore have learnt that (through reading and experimentation) that i have limestone bedrock and VERY alkaline sandy ish soil.

 But with the recent heavy persistant rain recently, my novice ability in identitfying my soil type as limestone sandy was brought into question when i was out gardening on my alpine rockery area and found that due to me tramping all over it the soil was more clay like when compacted. Also, whilst the first 6-8 inches deep was relatively free draining, beyond that it was "mud pie central" and like some one had buried a bucket of water just there!

A couple of additional clarifying points about my small garden - 1. i have covered 95% of the garden with ground cover matting and blue slate (due to an appalling lawn and weeds nightmare when we moved in so this might be affecting water levels due to less evaporation??. 2. Property was built in 1997 so whilst it isnt a new build it seemed to have that type of soil (builders leftovers) ....maybe?!

Thanks for reading!

11 to 13 of 13

Discussions started by somerset steve

euphorbia characias black pearl

yellowing leaves with black splotches help req'd pls 
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What have you achieved in the garden after a bad day at work?

Frustration and Oregano: A restorative short story! 
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Last Post: 22/10/2012 at 21:12

Ideas required for climbers over metal archway

Which 2 climbers best suited to give year round fragrance and flowers? 
Replies: 4    Views: 1022
Last Post: 15/09/2012 at 12:29

Seeking help identifying my soil type

Am i sandy/clay or a bit of both? Novice in need! 
Replies: 4    Views: 710
Last Post: 25/04/2012 at 13:06
5 threads returned