Latest posts by Topbird

New smart cover

Posted: 04/05/2017 at 21:51

Not dissimilar price Lily. Can be bought in large quantities from manufacturer (cheapest) or smaller quantities from Crocus.

Will be interesting to watch the BG trials  - I think they were using 4 different mulches - each laid at 2 different thicknesses.

Resurrected Twelve

Posted: 04/05/2017 at 17:46
Joyce21 says:

 During a lot of strike action in the 1970s there was an increase in the birth rate.. . people found something to do other than watch TV 

See original post

Unfortunately OH was away for 4 days when our big power cut happened - so even that wasn't an option!

Nice pics M-U glad you had a good day

Last edited: 04 May 2017 17:47:35

New smart cover

Posted: 04/05/2017 at 17:34

No I've not used it Lily - sorry.

I've found that all smaller particle bark mulch only really lasts for one season before it disappears into the soil - so will be pleased to hear how you get on with this.

I've found the only mulching product which seems to really last are the large (approx 2cm diameter) ornamental pine bark nuggets. They take ages to rot down and only need to be topped up every 2 or 3 years - depending how often you disturb them / inadvertently dig them in when doing new planting. A couple of path and no dig areas still have some of the original covering from 5 years ago.

They are, therefore, good for weed suppression and water retention in low disturbance areas - but not much good for adding lots of organic matter to the soil.

I'm still looking at Strulch (mineralised straw) which is expensive but supposed to be a longer lasting ornamental mulch. Delighted to see Beechgrove are doing a mulch trial this season and Strulch is one of the products they are using. They are also using various bark mulches.

They started the trial off 2 weeks ago and is available on catch-up if you missed the programme first time round

Last edited: 04 May 2017 17:35:51

Resurrected Twelve

Posted: 04/05/2017 at 17:05

Pansy - We're a bit rural here and a power cut is not uncommon. After one particularly bad storm we had no leccy for 48 hours. Spent most of that time thinking "what shall I do now?"

Catch up on TV? - duh!  Listen to the radio? - hmm not sure how long the batteries will last. Housework? - can't use the vac. Ironing? - duh! Read a book? - head torch not really powerful enough. Have a bath? - no hot water. Gardening? - it's dark and wet and it's November! Listen to music? - duh! Do some cooking? - what else can I do on one camping gas burner?

Boring, boring, boring..

Good buy Sunny

New smart cover

Posted: 04/05/2017 at 16:52

Sorry Lily - perhaps I'm being a bit dense (nothing new there then )- but which bark / mulch product are you talking about?

Thompson Morgan - dead plants, dead customer service

Posted: 04/05/2017 at 16:10

I was about to buy plants from T&M a couple of years ago and then I saw some really poor reviews / complaints about them on the forum - so I shopped elsewhere.

A few weeks later we had a talk from somebody at T&M (very nice guy) and he brought along a selection of plants for people to buy (looked fine).

He also supplied a couple of plants for the club raffle and I won a prize.

I selected a bare root hardy geranium - clearly labelled as 'Patricia' - a particular favourite.

Planted it in a prominent spot. I'm not sure what it is - but it most definitely isn't 'Patricia' - looks like boring old Endressii 'Wargrave Pink' or a close relative. Thought about complaining but it seemed a bit petty as it was essentially a freebie.

Product was obviously mislabelled - this gives me absolutely no confidence to order from this company in the future - so I won't.

Last edited: 04 May 2017 16:11:20

Thalictrum plant companion

Posted: 04/05/2017 at 16:00

Mine are / will be underplanted with a variety of stuff including (but not confined to) alchemilla mollis, epimediums, different brunneras, sweet woodruff, primula vulgaris and geranium cantabrigiense "Biokovo'.

Resurrected Twelve

Posted: 04/05/2017 at 12:41

Hello everyone

Just popping in while I wait for the hairdresser to turn up. OH doesn't understand why I've just washed the kitchen floor when she's going to cut my hair in there and I'll have to sweep up when she's gone. Can't have her thinking I'm a dirty old mare can I?- even changed the stained and holey (but clean I hasten to add) tea towels for some nice new (and ironed!) ones. 

Have more or less finished the new border. Still need a couple of 'ankle-ticklers' to fill and lighten a few spaces. Seeing Joyce's pictures have made me think that a few heucheras would be ideal - those and a couple of alchemilla would look good.

Is it just me - or does everybody else agree that Joyce seems to have a real flair for garden design and plant pairings? I haven't seen a bit of her garden yet that I don't like

Lovely kitty pictures again. I've found more bits of rabbits and other 'things' than I care to recall. It's when you find them hidden behind a curtain or sofa and wonder how long they've been there that it's bad..

One of my cats was a real hunter and eater. Loved rabbits - just used to leave the pyjama bottoms and fluffy tail - rest all gone. Her record was to catch and eat 3 in one afternoon. She couldn't move for 2 days - just flaked out with a grossly swollen belly - disgusting animal

Last edited: 04 May 2017 12:41:24

End of a season

Posted: 04/05/2017 at 12:21

Hello Ellen

I am so sorry to hear the news about Michael. 

He was a regular poster and generously shared his wealth of knowledge - especially about growing veg. He clearly loved the time he spent with compost and spade in hand - and it looks as though he was busy planting and planning almost to the end.

I hope he has left some lovely plants for you to harvest and enjoy over the next few months

Wheelchair access to a raised bed.

Posted: 04/05/2017 at 11:14

I have no experience designing around wheelchairs and wheelchair accessibility - but I have used raised beds before.

My own experience is that raised beds dry out much quicker than normal soil and anything like the structure in your picture would:

a) Dry out very quickly and require either constant watering or an irrigation system.

b) Anybody watering the 'bed' with their legs underneath the staging would get wet legs because excess water needs to be able to drain out of the bottom.

What does the client want to grow in the beds? Shrubs, most perennials and some veg would all require  more than 11" of soil to grow in. 

11" would probably restrict them to salad crops, herbs, and smaller perennials and annuals.

My own raised beds were made from hefty, pressure treated pine 'sleepers' (8' x 8" x 8") placed directly on the ground and built 2 sleepers high.

They were probably low enough to be accessible from a wheel chair and narrow enough that the middle could be reached from either side without over stretching. (Might need to be narrower for a chair user).

They were also a nice height to double up as a makeshift seat for any companion in the garden

The main advantage with these beds was that they took lots of soil and compost so they didn't dry out too quickly and they also received some watering by capillary action from the ground. The sleepers can be cut to any length to make interesting shapes / fit the space.

I was able to grow a full range of veg in these and they would also have been suitable for most perennials and small shrubs.

I hope you can find something that works - good luck with the project - sounds like a good cause!

Last edited: 04 May 2017 11:19:30

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