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Latest posts by Topbird

Scarifying: what is it?

Posted: 05/03/2015 at 13:48

Add to my post above

Looking at the names above I think I might be in a minority of one here being female??

Have always found that tending grass / lawn & other groundsman's duties is much more popular with men than women. That might explain why I much prefer to spend my time doing things other than tending a lawn but the others don't seem to mind  

Scarifying: what is it?

Posted: 05/03/2015 at 13:42

I'm afraid I am bit of a lazy gardener  who prefers the planting, pruning, pottering side of gardening to the annual chores which (for me at least) require a lot of discipline to do. I am all for delegating those tasks...

If I had a very small lawn I would (probably) do the work myself - with either a rake as above or buy a small electric scarifier per Verdun's suggestion. I have always found the amount of moss and thatch produced is quite amazing and the job takes much longer than I thought it would.

If you have a larger lawn I'd be tempted to let them do the job once and see how much thatch etc they get out. You can then make the decision whether to do it yourself in future or pay them to do it - perhaps every other year. Larger scarifiers are quite expensive to buy & it would probably cost nearly as much to hire one as the company are charging to do the work.

Word of warning - I would be wary of putting the moss / thatch produced in the compost bin. The moss takes forever to rot down and may well contain traces of weed and moss killer which you wouldn't really want to spread round your borders.

here i am again

Posted: 04/03/2015 at 17:17

Denise, if the Green Thumbs guys are doing what the Lawnhopper guys did for my "lawn" in my previous house - you should be in for a pleasant surprise in a few months time.

'My' team basically turned up about every 3  months and did a feed / weed / moss treatment appropriate for the time of year and they came in to do a one-off scarify / aerate treatment. The lawn looked absolutely dreadful after that first treatment and also after the first moss treatment (about 40% went black!). 

But I / they persisted and within a year they had turned around a muddy, weed infested, mossy patch with a bit of grass in it to a rather nice green carpet - not perfect but good enough for a country garden. Yes - I could have done the work myself but it was a large area and I know I would not have kept up the treatment regime. It also worked out cheaper to pay them to come and do it with bulk purchased chemicals than to do it myself with packets from the GC - so why would I? (and they always came back a couple of weeks later to make sure each treatment had worked with reapplication to areas where it was needed - free of charge).

I thought it was an excellent service and will be using them again when I've finished cutting borders and hard landscaping in the field I currently call a lawn. 


Posted: 03/03/2015 at 10:01


Busy-Lizzie - only in France could you have "motley patisserie trays" for your plants....



Posted: 02/03/2015 at 22:13
SGL - I think Ashdale was going to see Monty today as well - hope (s)he enjoyed it as much as me.
Panda - I have tried your cheese scones in the past - they were yummy! Mine are sometimes more like cheese biscuits!
Matty - best wishes - you are doing really well.
Dove - solved the Connect Wall number 2 - Bohemian Rhapsody a bit of a give away for anyone of my age


Posted: 02/03/2015 at 19:17

Certainly is a good night Dove. We have to watch Only Connect on pause TV so we can pause it to do the wall. Have definitely got better at it over the last couple of series - must have started to understand how the brains that set them work.

I think OH's favourite bit is the opening sequence when he gets to see whether or not Vicky is showing cleavage - men don't seem to develop much beyond the age of about 16 do they??


Posted: 02/03/2015 at 19:00

Evening all - has been bitterly cold here in Suffolk with a couple of snow showers. Spent an enjoyable morning in the 16th century (transcribing wills at our local records office) and then had a really lovely afternoon with Monty Don (& a couple of hundred other people!). He was really entertaining talking about the development of his own garden and career and then about some of the gardens he has visited world wide.

He came across as a really nice person - very self deprecating - and everybody seemed to thoroughly enjoy the afternoon. Can thoroughly recommend if anybody has the opportunity to go at another venue. Nigel got more than one mention!

Raspberry canes and hydrangea were delivered while I was out - so a little job for tomorrow I think.

My lovely OH is cooking dinner so time for a G&T in front of the fire  then University Challenge, Only Connect and Rick Stein in Australia - great day all round 

Creeping Dogwood

Posted: 28/02/2015 at 18:55

I would think they would be ok Tanty although I haven't grown them myself. If nobody else can give you more definite information, why not try digging up one plant and seeing how much root etc comes up with it. If it looks like a nice root ball I would think you would be ok to transplant them.

The plant is increased by division so is (presumably) suitable for digging up and hacking about. If you find that you get lots of bits coming away rather than a nice bunch of roots you could try potting the 'bits' up to grow them on that way before reusing them.

Good luck 

Sadly, a lesson not learned!

Posted: 28/02/2015 at 18:46

Dear old Des - him of the original fake tan & white teeth - used to quite fancy him when I was about 13 

john innes seed compost

Posted: 28/02/2015 at 18:41

I thought compost for sowing seed was intentionally low in nutrients anyway - so I wouldn't be too worried about that aspect of storing it. You should be ok as long as the bag is intact - it is a bit of a nightmare rehydrating compost which has completely dried out - only suitable for use as a soil improver really.

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