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Latest posts by Topbird

Things you do that annoy yourself...

Posted: 13/07/2015 at 18:51
  1. Putting things down then wasting 10 mins looking for them - hand fork, secateurs, garden knife etc - every single blessed gardening session.
  2. Not labelling things properly because "I'll remember that.... " yeah, right
  3. Not staking in time - some plants I do - many I don't - each year I promise to do better - each year I don't
  4. Taking forever to put plants in. In spite of 'setting things out' I always end up standing back and thinking "that needs to go a little to the right.." - usually means moving several plants. Little saying of mine - "Why plant it just the once when you can plant it 3 times.."
  5. Snipping unopened flower buds when getting carried away with the dead heading
  6. etc etc


Posted: 13/07/2015 at 18:37

Evening All. Garden is looking a bit spritzed up after a day of much needed light rain and drizzle. No need to water the veggies tonight - hooray !

Welcome aboard Bushman - any idea what to do about voles in my raised veggie beds? Little b**gers eat the beetroot and carrots from below  I love my cat but he has proved totally useless at sorting that particular problem.

Clari - lovely to 'see' you. Sorry you had such a pants weekend - hope things sort themselves out one way or another.

Everyone else seems to have been busy bees. I need to get on sorting out the jungle now the tennis has finished & attend to other jobs put on hold for the duration... 

I need your help

Posted: 13/07/2015 at 16:29

Lots of good tips above!!

When I am trying to lose a few pounds I have to plan a week's menu to get all the shopping and planning out of the way in one go and I find it easiest to plan meals which require the least amount of last minute cooking. That's because thinking about food makes me hungry, prepping food when hungry leads to 'picking' and the place where there is most temptation is in the kitchen and the shops. So it's much better for me to spend less time in either of these places and to prepare as much as possible in advance when I'm not hungry. 

I also find it easiest just to have the same things for breakfast each day (cereal, fruit & tea), a limited selection of things for lunch (easiest thing is a huge vat of soup made from lots of root vegetables cooked in stock for about 2 hrs in the oven and zuzzed up - no fat, few calories, quite thick and satisfying,  prep time = time to peel veg & zuzz, makes several days worth, can be frozen). For dinner I have a rota of about 10 meals - many of which are prepared in bulk, in advance (veg curry, sweet & sour chicken etc).

For recipe ideas I found the Rosemary Conneley Inch Loss Plan very useful and the freezer is my best friend. Prepare low cal meals in bulk, freeze and then quick & easy to reheat on the day.

I also prepare a huge bowl of fruit salad type stuff (pineapple, oranges, grapefruit usually) which sits in the fridge for about 3 days over which period I can pick at it if I'm feeling peckish / need something sweet or use it as a dessert. Again it's about having a purge & getting all the prep for several days done in one go.

Good luck 


Posted: 12/07/2015 at 19:33

I don't use council soil improver due to concerns about introducing horrors such as JKW into the garden. It might be illegal to put JKW etc in the council bins but you can bet your bottom dollar some people do it - either through failure to ID the plant, or ignorance of what should and should not go in the bin or just a 'don't care' attitude.

That said, I have no idea really what goes into the composts and soil improvers available from the GC and other suppliers - and there are some very unpleasant sounding composts out there according to some of the other threads on the forum. (ones that smell of petrol & other chemicals, ones containing glass, lumps of plastic and wood etc)

I am now of the opinion that it is worth paying more and trying to stick to local reputable suppliers who I can visit & question about the source of their raw materials. Other than that I use as much home produced garden compost and leaf mould as I possibly can - at least I know what goes in it!

Free offers Dead on Arrival

Posted: 12/07/2015 at 19:18

We had a talk by somebody from TM at our village garden club & he brought along some bare root stuff (all looked as healthy as bare root stuff can do in January) for the raffle.

I was one of the lucky winners and chose a clearly labelled geranium 'Patricia' - selected because I already have Patricia in the garden and think it is a bit of a stunner. My  plants are only a year old and still a bit small for dividing so it was a cheap way to increase my stock I thought...

Imagine my disappointment when the flowers opened a few weeks ago - instead of the lovely magenta flowers of Patricia they were a rather bright pink - very similar to boring old endresii. 

I don't think it is endressii (growth habit is not right) so will persevere in case it has other redeeming features, but it is definitely not the 'advertised' Patricia either and not a geranium I would have chosen.

Can't make up my mind whether or not to complain to them about it as it was only the price of a raffle ticket. But this experience (& other comments on this site) has put me off ordering anything from them - definitely not great publicity 


Posted: 11/07/2015 at 11:41

Congratulations WW  - well deserved! You could spend your voucher on gardening book - or you could spend it on a really good read to sit in the sun with, glass of something long, cool and clinking in hand and enjoy your lovely new garden.


Posted: 10/07/2015 at 19:47

Enjoyed the tennis but wish the Murray / Fedderer match could have gone on a bit longer. The score didn't really reflect the quality of the play.

Still, it's always a good afternoon when Roger feels the need to change his shirt on court 

Very best wishes to you Pdoc. How long are you going for? I'm sure you'll have a wonderful trip and have lots of tales to tell when you return. Don't forget your camera!!!


Posted: 10/07/2015 at 10:50

Broadside ice cream - that sounds soooo wrong I need to try it to make sure  


Posted: 10/07/2015 at 09:23
Morning all
Garden looks a bit more like it after a good haircut & hack back yesterday.Just one border left to get on top of then it's time to tackle the raspberry runners (yet again - they just keep coming back) and then it will be time to start at the beginning again!
But today is mens semis at Wimbers so SM & a little light HW this morning then it's time to enjoy good company, food & tennis.
Have a good time at Bressingham BL - hope the choo choos are running for you. I think I won half my bet from yesterday - was pretty sure somebody would end up at Wootens - one of my very favourite nurseries - Always have sticky plant labels there.
Hope everyone else has a great Friday too.


Posted: 09/07/2015 at 21:39
He is truly beautiful Edd

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