London (change)


Latest posts by waterbutts

Winter Reading

Posted: 11/10/2013 at 16:02

Neville Randall's book describing his experience of taking over a desolate plot and trying to make it into a garden used to make me laugh. Written in the 1960s , it was called "Thou Bleeding Piece of Earth" after the speech by Mark Antony in Shakespeare's Julius Caesar, "Oh pardon me, thou bleeding piece of earth....."

it was "lost" during a house move, the way things are. I miss it.


Posted: 11/10/2013 at 15:54

I like this thread


Posted: 11/10/2013 at 15:36

Poor old Charlie.


Posted: 11/10/2013 at 15:34

Hello Hamza, I'm afraid, as the saying goes, "I wouldn't have started from here".

Tomatoes cannot survive the slightest amount of frost. The plants will die if they are left anywhere that gets very cold overnight, even if you keep them warm during the day. The seeds are usually sown in the early spring in a warm place and the pla ts grow and flower and produce fruit over the course of the summer. They will stop fruiting in the autumn and are normally pulled up and composted by now.


Gardening Cart

Posted: 10/10/2013 at 22:10

Waterbutts has seen better days. Hearing shot to bits, eyes watery, hips needing replacement, teeth mostly missing.


Thank you.

banana palm

Posted: 10/10/2013 at 17:45

Hello vivien, yes your banana is going to need some frost protection.  Is it in a pot?  If so, you could maybe carry it into the house or greenhouse for the winter. If not, take a look at the step by step instructuons given on the website,

What should I do with these apple trees and when?

Posted: 10/10/2013 at 16:51

Hello lusi, sorry to have left you in limbo. I wrote a long message earlier on, only to find that it was deleted because the forum had signed me out. Didn't have the strength to retype it straightaway. Here goes again.

I think the best way for you to find the answers to your questions is for you to Google "RHS apple pruning". The RHS website deals with both summer and winter pruning plus why it is done, how to do it and when to do it. There is also a section on renovating old trees. There is so much information needed to answer your questions that I think you will need to read it all at your leisure and take a bit at a time.

I have never done summer pruning because all my trees are full size ones. As you will see from the website, summer pruning is generally done on what is called restricted forms, in other words shapes that the tree would not normally wish to grow into, such as cordons and so on.

I would think that there is little danger of your trees lacking a pollination partner. If you live in a town or suburb you probably have neighbours with apple trees. When bees are about they can fly for two miles to collect pollen and nectar.

Gardening Cart

Posted: 10/10/2013 at 07:58

I did. Not that I would have recognised it in its written form.

Which tool to break soil the best

Posted: 09/10/2013 at 18:37

I'm afraid I know nothing about the merits or demerits of different tools. If you want to have fun on Guy Fawkes night, the clay lumps could be from brick size up to rugby ball size - or even bigger. It just depends on how it comes out of the ground and what you can carry!

What should I do with these apple trees and when?

Posted: 09/10/2013 at 18:30

I think the main thing to try and do is treat the hacked about old tree as you would a sapling. In other words, imagine that the water shoots are the main stems of a new young tree. So, in winter number one cut them back by a third of the new growth.  if there are dozens of them, cut out the ones that grow from the centre or ones that are crossing completely. This will possibly encourage the cut stems to branch out sideways in summer number two. In winter number two, cut them back by a third of that year's growth and with a bit of luck they will produce lateral shoots and a few fruit spurs in summer number three. It is tiresome and tedious and probably quicker and better to start with a new tree, unless you like the old one for sentimental reasons.

Discussions started by waterbutts

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Poetry corner (such an original title)

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something for all you mole haters

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