Latest posts by Verdun


Posted: 14/02/2016 at 21:55


the Bishop is excellent.  Apart from the flowers the foliage is dark purple and good as a foil for other plants.  From one plant I now have several large plants.....some are in containers.  They grow 80 cm tall plus, do not need support and remain bushy in pots.  I mix dried manure with the compost plus fish blood and bone in early spring and this is sufficient for whole season.

to reduce height pinch out main shoots a couple of times.  Be prepared to dead head regularly to minimise weight on stems ..if windy there 

secret to large dahlias, in my experience, is to start them off early so I would pot them up now or asap in dry compost and start watering when shoots are seen 


Posted: 14/02/2016 at 19:14

Hmmmmmm!  And frosts are coming tonight folks 

Anyone done any gardening today - Version 2

Posted: 14/02/2016 at 16:29

Hiya Victoria, funny how we tire of plants.  I got rid of one or two caryopteris ....had severall......but now recognise their value, viz, aromatic foliage, late summer blue flowers, nice looking foliage to bounce other plants off.  Sterling Silver has esp nice silver foliage; Summer Sorbet has butter yellow foliage.    I tired of spireas but Magic Carpet and Goldflame have endeared me to them again.  

I now tend to consign plants to out of sight places before I decide to keep or not roses !!

Posted: 14/02/2016 at 16:20

Hiya Doc .  

Anyone done any gardening today - Version 2

Posted: 14/02/2016 at 15:52

Pretty good out there....bright and dry.  managed to get a few mins on veg patch with cultivator.  got that spring feeling to get going roses !!

Posted: 14/02/2016 at 15:30

It seems to me, I'm none the wiser.   Seems to me nobody here knows for sure.  Seems to me whatever suits you go for it.  

(Doesn't matter to rose is enough.    And planted 3" or so below the union ) 


Can I plant Anna's Red hellebores now?

Posted: 14/02/2016 at 14:24

Hellebores are very, very tough Humblebee.  They thrive in cold weather.  I assume your hellebores were growing outside when you bought them and also that they were in reasonably large pots.

if they are sizeable plants I would plant out asap.  Get plenty of compost plus dried manure in that....generously dug....hole too.  Ideally mushroom compost.  A handful or two of granular organic fertiliser mixed in too.  Despite the rain water it in well. 

Since you may have cossetted it a bit by bringing it indoors I would throw a fleece over it if frost or very cold nights occur. 


Posted: 14/02/2016 at 14:17

What type of hydrangea Tracey? 

If it is the usual mac sort, follow Steve's  advice plus, to reduce size, select one or two of the oldest wood and cut them to the ground.  You can select more stems is you want to but these will not flower this year.  If you take out an old branch or two every year you will reduce size considerably 

you can cut the whole thing down to the ground too thus forsaking all the flowers for this and probably next year. roses !!

Posted: 14/02/2016 at 12:57

More than that have to be aware of rootstock taking over.  Union high and anything below is a "weed".  

a few years back I helped plant roses ....a dozen or so I guess.  All were planted as I then thought was obvious, viz., keeping union clear of the ground.  They have been performing very well ever since.  Still clean stems 

similarly with someone who was my boss at the time so very conscientious.  A garden full of roses all planted high. .....not by me.  

Any other views/ experiences? roses !!

Posted: 14/02/2016 at 12:01

so, plant roses deep to bury the graft union or not to keep union well above the ground for roses??

there is clearly a difference of opinion even from the experts.  

I have one rose...plenty enough for me ......that has its union maybe 3" below ground level.  This according to David Austin.  This morning an expert on the radio said to keep union high.  

my natural inclination is to avoid burying the in fruit or grafted shrubs

personally I see no reason to bury the union at all but, surely, by so doing the scion could be overrun? 


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