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Gardening - And All Things Gardening Related (3)
Started by: jo anne (32693)   Report abuse
Carrying on from the lengthy gardening thread (2): Feb'15 - Jun '16

*Incredible Wigan to launch later this year*

On Tuesday 28th June, the Incredible Edible team will be in Believe Square (The Wiend) to demonstrate their skills and help volunteers plant fruit, veg and herbs.

Incredible Edible makes local food accessible to all with volunteers encouraged to plant it in communal areas such as grass verges, gardens, parks and schools and colleges.

Founder Pamela Warhurst launched the scheme eight years ago in Todmorden and is delighted to be growing Incredible Wigan.

Pam, who is originally from Leigh, said: “It’s a really simple initiative ... about growing food and supporting local food businesses, tasting local produce and helping people to use food to be happy and healthy."

Links: www.incredible-edible-todmorden.co.uk / incredibleediblenetwork.org.uk

Posted by: jo anne (32693)   Report abuse

Posted by: Anne (3766)  Report abuse
Having birds and especially pigeons taking lawn seed soon after it has been sown whenever I have dug out weeds I decided to sow grass seed in seed trays. A very successful experiment. I am now ready to do patching in the next few days. Cut a patch to any size as I would if using bought turves.

Posted by: PeterP (7618) Report abuse
Anne may try that myselfTried casting seed and then covering with netting but the starlings still got to the seed

Posted by: blackrodweaver (578)  Report abuse
Lost all my Impatiens bizzie lizzies to downey mildew .
cant compost them as it may infect the next lot of them I put in. thank god it doesn't infect other plants... anyone else had this problem

Posted by: dave b (1280)  Report abuse
My first sunflower as come out, 7ft at the moment ,thought i would have a change this year and get some mixed colours

Posted by: momac (10735)  Report abuse
Oh Dave I love that colour.

Posted by: dave b (1280)  Report abuse
The edge of the petals are a golden colour momac, hard to tell with the photo ,took it with my phone.Just a waiting game now to see what other colours are.

Posted by: momac (10735)  Report abuse
I really didn't know that there was any other colour than yellow...that is a gorgeous colour.

Posted by: Anne (3766)  Report abuse
I've been looking for a skirt or pants that colour for ages!
You're quite an expert with sunflowers Dave, I remember last years.

Posted by: dave b (1280)  Report abuse
Got the seeds off Ebay Anne, from premier seeds, their called Autumn Beauty ,mixed colours 75 seeds.99p 7ft 10ins now the tallest.

Posted by: dave b (1280)  Report abuse
Another flower out today ,tallest now is 8ft 5ins

Posted by: priscus (8244) Report abuse
Black Scurf (Rhizoctonia solani) on mih spuds.

piccy: this stuff

Would not mind, but these were grown in potato growing bags, with commercially purchased compost: they have not come into contact with garden soil. Either seed potato was already infected, or some agent has acted as a disease vector from infected soil.

Posted by: dave b (1280)  Report abuse
All yellow one out today

Posted by: blackrodweaver (578)  Report abuse
priscus I grow a few potatoes every year usually in the garden soil. but a year or so ago got a potato grow bag given me , and I had the same problem was told its because the soil is "light soil" not compact enough. you can still eat them just peel it off.only affects the skin

Posted by: dave b (1280)  Report abuse
and another

Posted by: priscus (8244) Report abuse
Grow your own Saffron.

Not for me, My soil too heavy/clay, but

on special offer

Posted by: priscus (8244) Report abuse
This time of year, I buy garden lime, to help open up my heavy clay soil.

I was extremely surprised to discover that price this year is TWICE what it had cost last year!

( I don't think it can be blamed on the falling pound: surely we must produce our own garden lime in the UK.)

Posted by: kathpressey (5113)  Report abuse
agapanthus//I bought some this year for the bees but they didnt grow much in their pots. Do I take them out for winter or leave well alone?

Posted by: Anne (3766)  Report abuse
Kath... I wish I could grow them. I have tried pots, in the ground and read all kinds of advice but always no joy. Post if you succeed, I would love to know.

Posted by: kathpressey (5113)  Report abuse
i think I will leave them be and hope for the best Anne. i was inspired by beauties in a NT garden but I've just got a few short leaves

Posted by: priscus (8244) Report abuse
Lavender has been the most potent attraction for bees in my garden.

Posted by: kathpressey (5113)  Report abuse
yes I've planted lots of lavender but lost a few last winter. the agapanthus we saw that day were covered in bees.

Posted by: lapis lazuli (inactive) Report abuse
Agapanthus prefer dry soil. We have two here which Tom overwinters in the greenhouse.

Posted by: priscus (8244) Report abuse
27th December. What I need now is a good frost to nip all the weeds that have germinated in the recent warm winter days.

It is rather difficult to get at them, either by hand, or using any sort of tool, without disturbing the newly emerging spring bulbs amongst which they have appeared.

Posted by: PeterP (7618) Report abuse
Due to the mild weather on walking round the garden and looking in the pots it is surprising the amount of bulbs that have pushed through the soil. Just hoping the frosts don't kill them off.Even some of the bushes have got new buds bursting through.

Posted by: Anne (3766)  Report abuse
Think yourself lucky you have some left Peter. Several weeks ago I planted over fifty crocus bulbs....today I found many uprooted and chewed. Could it be mice, there were several small holes in the ground nearby.
The established bulbs were left alone.

Posted by: jo anne (32693)   Report abuse
Fruit Tree Grafting Workshop - Fri 10th March - Facebook Link

Posted by: jo anne (32693)   Report abuse
Potato Day, Sun 12th Feb, 11.30am - 2.30pm, St Benedict's Parochial Club, Hindley WN2 3AD

Lucky Hens Potato Day (Facebook)

Posted by: PeterP (7618) Report abuse
Got my potato set(main crop-Maris Piper) from the garden centre.Will leave them in the shed till the end of the month then get them spritting for mid-March and then plant them in the raised bed I made last year.Grape vine did not get a lot of leaves on it last year no grapes at all. Will see what happens this year hope I have not lost it(not cheap to buy)

Posted by: momac (10735)  Report abuse
Peter..I grew some last year in bags,can't say I got a lot but hope I've
learned a bit more by reading ..am saving my egg boxes to store them..will
probably get Maris Piper this weekend from garden centre.
Re your grape vine..the one I had didn't produce grapes the first year..but
the problem was my greenhouse is only small and it literally took over
making no room for tomatoes and cucumber so it had to go I'm sorry to say
On the subject of cucumbers I'm going to try growing them outside this year
If they fail well at least I've tried.

Posted by: scoop (3285)   Report abuse
I have a yucca in the back garden that is in flower, couldn't believe it when i saw it.

Posted by: momac (10735)  Report abuse
Scoop..I used to have one..it flowered and was beautiful,but it got very big
and I gave it to my next door neighbour,but every year I can see it flowering
in her garden from my landing window,and could kick myself every time I see it.

Posted by: scoop (3285)   Report abuse
I understand why you gave it away, but at least you can still see it flower. I will never get rid of mine it has three stems of it now and it is gorgeous.

Posted by: jo anne (32693)   Report abuse
Thur 23rd March, 3pm Sunshine House are giving away seed potatoes with Incredible Edible
If you'd like any let them know so they can put your name down.

Sunshine House Community Hub, Wellington St, Scholes WN1 3SA Tel: 01942 820026
www.sunshinehousewigan.com / Facebook / @BarbaraNettleto (Manager)

Posted by: momac (10735)  Report abuse
Scoop,they really are a sight to behold aren't they..don't ever give yours
away no matter how big it grows.

Posted by: priscus (8244) Report abuse

Once upon a time, I possessed an ancient, very narrow, Dutch Hoe: the blade was only some two, or maybe two-and-a-half inches wide.

This was a very useful tool for cutting newly emergent weeds, particularly amongst the spring bulbs currently blooming. Such a narrow blade easily controlled close to stems of flowers, veg, and strawberries.

Alas, some years back, this valued implement has walked.

Have searched online, and gardening/tool cats, but cannot find a replacement.

Please tell me if you know of such.

PS The cutting edges of the device were so worn, I think it quite possible that the hoe began life normal sized, and had been worn down to the diminutive proportions which I had found so helpful.

Posted by: momac (10735)  Report abuse
Priscus,I've just had a look for 'Narrow garden hoes' and I found some on Amazon.

Posted by: priscus (8244) Report abuse
Thanks. I have looked there before, but will certainly take a look again.

Posted by: GOLDEN BEAR (3068)  Report abuse
When is the best time to buy/plant BUDDLEIA also my wife wants to now about a MAGNOLIA i am not that green fingered so would like help .

Posted by: momac (10735)  Report abuse
GB..you can buy or plant Buddleia any time,but look for one that's already showing a couple of flowers so that know it's true colour is..I got one last
year but one,it said on the ticket that it was red..and the photo on the ticket
showed that it was Red but it turned out Purple,however I kept it and the
White one I'd bought planted them together and you wouldn't believe how
many butterflies you get throughout Summer,we were sorry when Autumn
came...ours grew very leggy so I pruned them right down..you can also
grow them in pots..you'll enjoy them.
Magnolias I'm afraid I've never had one,but maybe someone else will see this and help you...I love plants.

Posted by: GOLDEN BEAR (3068)  Report abuse
MOMAC: Cheer's thank you fir that i will sure bear that in mind when we go and buy them.

Posted by: PeterP (7618) Report abuse
Magnolias can be planted out in the garden or in a large pot at this time of year.We were given one about 20 years ago which we planted in the front garden and when ever I drive past our old house I glance to see it and it is lovely when it is in bloom.

Posted by: GOLDEN BEAR (3068)  Report abuse

Posted by: priscus (8244) Report abuse
My Forsythia finally in bloom today. (Mid March!)

It usually blooms in February.

I do not know why it is so late.

Have about half a dozen of them. Don't think it is a location issue.

Posted by: priscus (8244) Report abuse
Checked out Amazon, yes they have narrow draw hoes and variations upon that theme.

Cannot weed between close planted specimens with those: it will damage the roots.

Did not find any narrow Dutch hoes there though.

Something called a flower hoe listed. Described as narrow, but blade which is heart-shaped, is at its widest portion same as conventional hoe.

Also something called a potato hoe. That is close, is sharp, and is narrow. However, since it is primarily intended for earthing up spuds, blade is directly in line with handle. It would not be easy to skim ground surface to chop weeds, which is what I am looking for in a narrow Dutch hoe.

Think I am going to have to import one from Germany.

Posted by: jo anne (32693)   Report abuse
TV presenter Adam Frost to host workshops at Bents on Sun 2nd Apr - Leigh Journal

Posted by: jo anne (32693)   Report abuse
Wigan Council - Facebook:

The team behind Incredible Edible are holding Potato Day on Thursday 23rd March!

Go along to Wigan Market between 12-3pm or Sunshine House, Scholes at 3pm
and get your potatoes and healthy recipes. You don't need a garden - a tub will do the trick.

Pam Warhurst, founder of Incredible Edible, said: "We want to encourage Wigan residents to cook healthy meals with fresh and locally grown produce."

Speak to Pam about how you can get involved in Incredible Wigan.

Posted by: priscus (8244) Report abuse
Still searching for replacement narrow bladed Dutch hoe, and as a result of Googling, and following a number of links to various garden related web sites, I find that I am not alone. It seems many of us are engaged in this fruitless search!

I wonder how we get to the situation where what users want is one thing, and what manufacturers unload upon them is a totally different thing.

I think that I will call it the Microsoft Syndrome!

Countless replies to queries from gardeners elicit the reply, "Cut one down to size with an angle grinder."

Well, I wish I could. I would be quite happy to do that if I could find one where doing so would not slice through the metal which attaches blade to shaft. ie one needed that does not attach via metal at outer edges of blade width.

Yesterday, I shifted 16 buckets of weeds, and damaged (fatally in most instances) about a dozen plants because hoe blade is too wide for purpose.

Posted by: PeterP (7618) Report abuse
Priscus I think the type of hoe you require is an American Hoe.The blade of this type of Hoe is welded in the middle and therefore can be cut to any width without impacting on the strengthSome for sale on E-Bay.Type in American Garden Hoe

Posted by: priscus (8244) Report abuse
No, they are draw hoes. Adze type action.

For close weeding bowt damaging roots, I am seeking a narrow DUTCH hoe: push hoe that is very sharp, and can skim just under soil surface to cut weed, especially weed seedlings. Failing to cut them, and just dragging them out leaves any that are concealed, able to re-establish their growth in about a day or so.

Posted by: PeterP (7618) Report abuse
Priscus the narrowest blade I could find on E-Bay was 4 inch wide from Bulldog tools

Posted by: priscus (8244) Report abuse
Thanks Peter, I have now been searching for a considerable time. Looking for 2 to 2.5 inch width. I used to have one, but it may well have worn to that size from larger original.

No doubt if one is not to be found, I will eventually find someone to make one for me.

Posted by: momac (10735)  Report abuse
Been to different Garden Centres this AM..set out looking for Clematis even
though it's a bit early to see them at their best..but finished up looking at
Honeysuckle..came home to look on line see which had the nicest
fragrance,Japanese Honeysuckle seemed to be the best scent..does
anyone have any better information on them...thank you.

Posted by: ann-spam (3470)  Report abuse
I cant help you mo but maybe someone will be able to on here

Posted by: momac (10735)  Report abuse
Thanks Anne..Cliff said I'll have to go to Tokyo.

Posted by: mortarmillbill (539) Report abuse

Have a look at the Bulldog tools website. They do Dutch hoes with 4", 5" and 6" blades.

Also look at the Paxton hoe - you would have to grind this to size though.

Posted by: PeterP (7618) Report abuse
Momac we have a Japanese Honeysuckle which we grow up against a 6x6 fence panel. You are better getting an ever- green plant then this will mask the fence panel in winter instead of having bare branches.Very easy to keep in check

Posted by: momac (10735)  Report abuse
Thank you Peter..I've always loved Clematis..even though they are bare in Winter..it's the fragrance that I'm after, is it as nice. as they say.

Posted by: PeterP (7618) Report abuse
Momac it is one of the plants that stand out with its very strong scent

Posted by: momac (10735)  Report abuse
Lovely..thank you Peter..I must look out for one .

Posted by: nightchap (306)  Report abuse
Priscus - search for spud/potato hoe. These usually have 5cm wide blades.

Posted by: priscus (8244) Report abuse
Yes, I found one of those, but is inline, rather than offset at angle to handle, which does not facilitate the skimming action of weed chopping with a dutch hoe.

Thanks though, to all who have advised me.

Will either grind down, or make, or have made for me a suitable implement.

(Gerrin owd, so stooping to weed too much strain on back now)

Posted by: priscus (8244) Report abuse
Climbing Strawberry Anybody come across these?

Posted by: priscus (8244) Report abuse
I wonder.....

If like me, you will have potting compost left from last year. then it is tempting to use this now for germinating spring planted seeds.

It will not have the same nutrient content as compost sold specifically for seedlings, and what it does have may to some extent go stale (debatable!).

So what about doctoring the former with some homemade nutrient additives to suit seedlings.

I have decided to try adding a couple of drops of household ammonia to water used to moisten the compost (ie extreme dilute): the ready available nitrogen should meet the greatest need.

And to stir in a small amount of very fine spent coffee grounds( to add P & K).

Using the water which has been used to boil my veg for dinner should supply small quantities of other requisites.

Posted by: lock lass (109) Report abuse
My OH has ground coffee all the time (I have instant) and I always empty the cafetiere onto the bed outside my back door (which has various plants in especially roses) and have done every day for years. They always come up robust and another plant that comes up better than the others in other areas of my garden are the bluebells. I also give my beds a covering of mulch in the Spring. I use Westland Gro-Sure Smart Ground Cover Mulch - 100L bags around £9.00 per bag which lasts me over the growing season and it's good for breaking up clay/heavy soil as well.
Like you priscus, I use the water from boiling my veg in - an old tip from my ex Father in Law in 1967, whether it does any good or not I don't know.

Posted by: PeterP (7618) Report abuse
I built a raised bed last year 8ft x 4ft x 18" and filled it with a mix of soil and peat. I have turned the soil over and started planting a few veg. What I have noticed is there are no worms in the soil. Which is the best way to get worms into the raised bed(this bed is built onto a concrete base),Or do i not need to have any worms in the soil

Posted by: priscus (8244) Report abuse
You can buy Brandling Worms at some fishing shops, or on line.

It is not difficult to find them in the ground (have a Google for list of ways to)

Brandlings are what you get in compost heap, and often considered best for keeping soil in good health.

Whether or not you need them? - Difficult to answer that one. Depends on how well the mix in your raised bed is supplying the nutrients which your plants need. (And some plants drain nutrients much faster than others)

The peat is theoretically rich in nutrients, but other than the black fen-land peat, it takes far too long to break down and release what your plants need.

There is the nutrient content of the added soil, and the peat will make the mix humus-rich. If you are feeding plants, or adding fertiliser, or if you regularly replace mix with soil from garden, then you may find that you do not miss the worms.

Nevertheless, worm compost, ie the excreta of worms eating vegetative waste in the soil, is regarded by many as the finest of all growing media. If you do add worms, you may need to add veg waste to feed them.

With a concrete base, and possibly high acidity due to the peat, and a depth of 18 inches might be subject to extremes of wet/dry, I do not know if that is a comfortable environment for Brandlings.

Posted by: priscus (8244) Report abuse
PS My neighbour, who is a keen angler, can probably answer that one. I will ask him next time that I see him. He seems to have oodles of knowledge when it comes to Brandlings.

Posted by: Pennywise (inactive) Report abuse
Climbing Strawberries - Just get one of these: http://www.flower-tower.co.uk/

And plant normal strawberries in, diverting the runners into the holes.

Posted by: priscus (8244) Report abuse
Have used them, or similar in past. They are not very good. At least not for strawberries.

Although strawberry plants will grow OK in such containers, they do tend to be very, very, poor cropping!

If you must grow strawberries in containers, I have found these got better crop than many alternatives tried.

(Got mine 2 for a quid/ 3 for a quid - clearance at poundshop)

Posted by: priscus (8244) Report abuse
Asked my neighbour about the worms. He does not think think 50% peat will be a comfortable environment, as in natural peat lands (other than Fen type) they are less commonly found.

Posted by: priscus (8244) Report abuse
Trap Planting

The technique of growing particularly vulnerable hosts surrounding your valued plants/crops. Intention being to lure the pests onto such, where they can be destroyed.

Any experience of this, anyone?

Posted by: ann-spam (3470)  Report abuse
any one know were is the best place to get a clemetis or climbing plant please

Posted by: momac (10735)  Report abuse
Hi Ann..Birkacre near Chorley have some beauties there..but in the meantime I'll do you a cutting from mine for next year..a pink..a purple one and a Montana..and hope that they take root for you.

Posted by: PeterP (7618) Report abuse
Pimbo Nurseries have some nice climbers

Posted by: ann-spam (3470)  Report abuse
Thank you momac and Peterp

Posted by: ann-spam (3470)  Report abuse
Dooes anyone have any seeds for planting or is it better to buy flowers .

Posted by: priscus (8244) Report abuse

Clematis seed can take up to three years to germinate, so unless you do nor require the plant for about five years, better getting a nursery grown plant.

(You can propagate Clematis from cuttings, and by layering.)

Posted by: priscus (8244) Report abuse
ps I have had some nice Clematis, keenly priced, from Aldi. They seem to do them twice a year, which I guess is spring and late summer. All have grown well.

Varieties I grow are:

Montana sub sp Elizabeth

Another Montana, which I have not identified. (sold to me as Elizabeth, though obviously not.)

Polish Spirit

Warsaw Nike

Hagley Hybrid


Posted by: dave b (1280)  Report abuse
Had the last strawberries at weekend,had approx 4LB this year from patch, not as good as last year 6LB, the heavy rain and humid conditions means more slugs .
Been very nice though ,very sweet, Royal Cambridge is the variety

Posted by: Anne (3766)  Report abuse
At last! Following several years attempting to grow agapanthus I woke this morning to find one in bloom. Not a very robust specimen but a start.

Posted by: momac (10735)  Report abuse
Anne, Monty Don gave advice on agapanthus on Gardeners World ..we watched it last night on playback.

Posted by: Anne (3766)  Report abuse
Yes momac, saw it. He says pot bound helps, mine is in a bed. Wondering if I should risk lifting and potting. Don't know what happened to the others, maybe the winter did for them.

Posted by: marsin (181) Report abuse
Hi momac, Hope you had success with your plums this year! l have not had one plum..it is very disheartening.

Posted by: Anne (3766)  Report abuse
Hello marsin and momac...disappointed with my plums as well, had loads at first then we had those strong winds and heavy downpours now only five left.

Posted by: momac (10735)  Report abuse
Hello Anne and Marsin..I have about six tiny plums that seem to have been
growing forever..and they don't even look eatable..very disappointing.

Posted by: cordyline (5350)   Report abuse
Mrs Cordy is partial to Blueberries with her breakfast cereal -- so for her birthday

Got these containers and put in 3 plants plus plenty Pansies

Posted by: momac (10735)  Report abuse
Well the greenhouse s stripped now,green toms in a paper bag with a
banana to ripen,bedding begonias still thriving but I don't think for much
longer now..had some plums for the first time..hope the young pear tree
produces fruit next year.
Next year I would love a pink pampas grass,but haven't seen any anywhere
they have them on Amazon but not sure what it would look like by the time
it arrived...does anyone know which is the best place to find any..Wigan or
surrounding areas.

Posted by: ann-spam (3470)  Report abuse
Did you find your plant today momac at the garden centre .

Posted by: momac (10735)  Report abuse
Haven't been today Anne,am not expecting to find one now anyway..but
won't be happy until I find one,I've never seen any in anyone's garden at all
they might be hard to find in Garden Centres but will ask the next time we go.

Posted by: jo anne (32693)   Report abuse
Grow Your Own Sunday, 15th October, 10am - 3pm in the Walled Kitchen Gardens.
Autumnal activities for all the family, including:
• Apple crushing • Foraging walk • Cookery demo by The Coven • See the Conservation Pigs

Haigh Woodland Park (FB) / Walled Garden Volunteers (FB)

Posted by: ann-spam (3470)  Report abuse
Garden weather over for another year .

Posted by: momac (10735)  Report abuse
It sure is Ann..just clearing everything up now..greenhouse..clean plant
pots..prune all trees..cuttings planted for friends..garden swing put away..
roll on next Spring.

Posted by: Anne (3766)  Report abuse
momac.... I'm doing exactly the same things, dead hostas to cut back, cover fountain, swinging hammock to cover and tie down. Then there's mountains of leaves. I have sown some seeds about three weeks ago and pricked them out, they are in the greenhouse with extra insulation, will have to nurse them through winter? I am also waiting for a delivery of agapanthus. I hope I don't kill this lot off.
p.s. tied hammock down before Ophelia visited.

Posted by: momac (10735)  Report abuse
Anne..my Hostas were eaten away again with slugs so Im going to find out where I can find the ones that aren't affected by slugs..Monty Don had some in his garden...you've reminded me,I got some agapanthus seed
pods on Sunday in Southport and they're still in my bag..I must see to them.
P.S. Anne..hope you don't mind,but who's Ophelia .k

Posted by: Anne (3766)  Report abuse
momac .... not a person, the tail end of the recent windy weather we had.😠

Posted by: momac (10735)  Report abuse
Yes Anne..of course..what am I like ..doh.

Posted by: ann-spam (3470)  Report abuse
Well i am still getting some flowers pink Iris

Posted by: momac (10735)  Report abuse
Anne,next year try some bedding Begonias..they'll last until November,or
'til the first frost..they're great and colorful

Posted by: ann-spam (3470)  Report abuse
I will good idea .

Posted by: Anne (3766)  Report abuse
I store my begonias over winter along with pelargoniums. Trim all growth once withered and then put in large plant pots or a bucket insulated with newspaper, sacking or anything else suitable. Store in a frost free place until spring.
Works for me.

Posted by: priscus (8244) Report abuse
ROSES : Black Spot

Looks as if I am finally going to have to admit defeat. Anyone succeeded in overcoming this pest?

Some seven years back, decided to cover a North-facing wall with climbing roses: mostly Iceberg and Danse de Feu.

Most years, they had been the garden's star performer, displaying a profusion of blooms from early Summer to around Christmas time. No more so, due to Black Spot.

Removal of diseased growth and foliage has left them so leggy, that they are no-longer effectively screening the wall, and blooms, much reduced are now restricted to being too high up to appreciate.

Have tried copper based solutions, and Beyer's 'Fungus Fighter Plus'. They work, temporarily that is, until we get one of the all too frequent wet spells, when the Black Spot inevitably advances again. It is widespread in the locality. Even the local authority's plants in the park are heavily Black Spot infested.

So, it is either replace them, taking precautions against re-planting disease. (What used to be called Rose-Sick) Or, at risk of killing the plant severe prune to see if it will produce new shoots for training. Thereafter, would have to espalier them, rather than having them scramble to cover the wall, so that all parts are low enough and exposed for spraying, and immediate removal at first sign of any infected leaves.

Posted by: momac (10735)  Report abuse
Does anyone know where I can buy a pink pampas grass..have been to all
local garden centres..Back Lane Shevingto ..Birkacre..Wyvale..Kiwi...all
there is on line are the seeds,reading reviews on the only one that can be
bought on line didn't give very good merit..I have searched everywhere,
I'm after the pale to medium pink..but can't find one anywhere..thank you
for any info.

Posted by: ann-spam (3470)  Report abuse
Momac have you been to the garden centre upholland .

Posted by: momac (10735)  Report abuse
Ann no I haven't ..will have a look.ta n

Posted by: PeterP (7618) Report abuse
Momac plenty for sale on Ebay

Posted by: momac (10735)  Report abuse
Peter, thank you,but they're nearly all seeds and the reviews on the
grasses that are fully grown haven't been very good..but again thank you.

Posted by: ann-spam (3470)  Report abuse
still some of my flowers in bloom pink ones .

Posted by: Anne (3766)  Report abuse
I have stored my begonias but not my pelargoniums as they are still going strong with blooms looking good, so are the leaves.

Posted by: ann-spam (3470)  Report abuse
I noticed in my Garfen there is a few shoots coming through could ne the Daffodils i planted .

Posted by: momac (10735)  Report abuse
Looks like you'll have a lovely show in Spring Ann

Posted by: Platty (226) Report abuse
ann-spam: I've got shoots on my roses!!

Posted by: marsin (181) Report abuse
I remember my Dad putting an apple on a plant pot- in the house- and putting a plastic bag over it.. Will someone please tell me why! Thanks

Posted by: momac (10735)  Report abuse
Marsin,I have no idea why he did that,I hope someone does know,I'm
curious too...did anything happen to the apple at all.

Posted by: marsin (181) Report abuse
Momac.. I'm pretty sure it was to help flower buds to open/bloom. .. I am asking because I have an indoor jasmine that is full of buds and they don't want to flower..

Posted by: momac (10735)  Report abuse
Marsin..I had a look on google and found this.

My pineapple is 3years old and has never fruited,so I put the pot in a
grocery bag,then put ten apples in it,I tied the bag tight round the bottom,
I didn't have a clear bag big enough for the entire plant,so wasn't sure this
would work or not,I left it for about 3 weeks the took the plant and
discarded the apples about a month later I have Pineapple fruit form.

But Marsin,I have also read that if you put a couple of apples on the soil of your
plant the ethylene gasses will spurt it into life..anyway good luck.

Posted by: marsin (181) Report abuse
Thank you momac..
Will try an apple on the jasmin. Had a nice pineapple from my plant, not very big but nice and sweet.
going to google ethylene gasses and plants...

Posted by: PeterP (7618) Report abuse
Managing to get into the garden and do some jobs now the weather is turning for the better. Put some peas in the raised bed and I can see then poking through the soil.Started sweet peas carrots and tomatoes in the greenhouse also got my potatoes starting to sprite. Started to lay a flag path to go to the raised bed (wife does not like walking on the gravel)Daft has it may seen after the flags are down then I will top the gravel up at the side/back of the bungalowBeen on a few sites to get prices for 20 mm golden gravel bulk bag most want £100+

Posted by: momac (10735)  Report abuse
Does anyone know how to get rid of wild garlic,it's just taking over..I can't
put weed killer down because it's growing around fruit trees etc..will I just
have to try and pull it up by hand,but somehow I don't think that will stop it.
Thank you for any suggestions.

Posted by: Anne (3766)  Report abuse
Momac..... I'm sure someone once told me any kind of bulb won't be killed by weed killer, think it must be true as I have tried it with snowdrops and bluebells. I have needed to dig them out but still can't stop them taking over. I think you will have to dig deep making sure to get everything out.

Posted by: momac (10735)  Report abuse
Thank you for replying Anne,I can see me being very busy over a few days

Posted by: PeterP (7618) Report abuse
Who said gardening was cheapLast year built a 8 x 4 raised bed and filled with soil then topped up with manure.This year laid flags round the raised bed not much change out of £200At last got my peas and potatoes in so look forwards to a good crop off both.

Posted by: ann-spam (3470)  Report abuse
It is not cheap peterp if you get some good plants its fine but half of what some garden centre sell are not up to scratch .

Posted by: PeterP (7618) Report abuse
Ann-spam were possible try to grow my own from seed. If we need to buy plants we shop around and try to get the best at a cheap price

Posted by: Anne (3766)  Report abuse
Last autumn I bought three packets of end of season seeds from Asda. I sowed the perennials (lupins) in October in my greenhouse the rest bedding (Cosmos and Asters) beginning of April. I now have approximately 150 healthy looking plants, cost....60p. Also my begonias I lifted and stored over winter are beginning to show although very late, I presume owing to the cold snap earlier on.

Posted by: marsin (181) Report abuse
momac, garlic is one of the things l have never had luck with,l have never had a bulb yet! tried different locations, soil but still no luck!
Anne l have had the same approx 12 bluebells for more than 20 yrs, they have never multiplied!
l am envious of both of you.

Posted by: momac (10735)  Report abuse
Marsin,what a pity I don't live near you,I have loads of them..I'm in Beech
Hill by the way...and I do believe that wild garlic is all the professional chefs

Posted by: marsin (181) Report abuse
momac, l would definately love to have some of your garlic-too bad l am in Canada! l use garlic a LOT. last week l happened to notice that the garlic in the shop was´grown in China´...Yesterday l bought some 3 in 1 soil, cow manure, and a bag of garlic cloves.. have googled ´how to plant garlic´-same as l always have planted before....

Posted by: momac (10735)  Report abuse
Oooooh Marsin,that's a long way to travel for a few garlic bulbs.lol..good
luck anyway.

Posted by: ann-spam (3470)  Report abuse
My strawberries are coming through

Posted by: PeterP (7618) Report abuse
My potatoes have been flattened with the high winds will have a look tomorrow to see if I can bank them up with some more soil

Posted by: priscus (8244) Report abuse
Yes, my potato plants all snapped off by the high winds, and that in spite of them being heavily earthed up. All that work for nought.

About a third of the strawberry plants also torn from their crowns, and a few trees destroyed, and clematis torn about.

Iceberg roses have survived, but Danse du Feu stripped of blooms.

Only Garlic, Onions, French Bean, Primroses and Fuchsia came through unscathed.

Still lucky damage mostly restricted to garden, and only minor damage to abode.

Posted by: marsin (181) Report abuse

Don't know what is happening in my garden!
Daffodils are in bloom, not had one flower on the Rhododendron!
Black flies are terrible and more mosquitos than have ever been in the 54yrs here. On the plus side always had a problem with my daffodils not flowering.. So even late they are lovely

Posted by: Anne (3766)  Report abuse
Did a silly thing earlier this week. Put weed killer on some rough grass then walked across the lawn. Perfect set of footprints, no need for Sherlock.

Posted by: momac (10735)  Report abuse
I did a silly thing too,accidentally cut the main stem of one of the tomato
plants,so had to get another one but it's an outdoors one.

Posted by: priscus (8244) Report abuse
Spent two hours picking strawberries. Two large boxes of them. Then I had a fall whilst carrying them. Squashed about a kilo of strawberries, and to add insult to injury, I fell into the strawberry bed, destroying half a dozen or so plants!

Still, at least not injured, other than bruising.

Wonder if I am getting too old for gardening?

Posted by: momac (10735)  Report abuse
Every year slugs have eaten most of my Hosta..did a bit of a trial and put
garlic cloves in the soil ..it's in a tub so just planted them around the pot,
and guess what..it worked,no eaten leaves.

Posted by: Anne (3766)  Report abuse
Wonder if it would do the same for my Solomon's seal, I always have small grey caterpillars eating the leaves after flowers have gone. Not a clue what they are/do developed into.

Posted by: momac (10735)  Report abuse
It's worth a try Anne,I'm sure it can't do any harm.

Posted by: PeterP (7618) Report abuse
Both of my pear trees had plenty of pollen /flowers earlier in the year and I expected a lot of pears like last year. Instead there has been only about 20 pears between both pear trees and some of those have been attacked by some form of bug which as burrowed into the pears

Posted by: priscus (8244) Report abuse
Same with my apple trees. No fruit this year: they just could not take the drought. Tried to water them, but I cannot compete with soaking of rainfall. One in particular looks very Autumnal: just hope it comes back next year.

Farmers are warning of food shortages. It seems commercial growers also have taken a hit.

Posted by: priscus (8244) Report abuse
Is it safe?

Posted by: PeterP (7618) Report abuse
Is our food safe? when farmers are spraying human waste onto their fields to grow crops inwhat toxic chemical mix is in human waste,It does not smell nice for weeks after they spread it

Posted by: priscus (8244) Report abuse
I always used to win a prize at the local garden show.

I think it is because the house had been converted from ancient agricultural workers cottages, and about 300 years of the contents of earth closets had gone into the garden.

When gardening these days, I often wish that I had stayed there.

Posted by: momac (10735)  Report abuse
Apologies for going off subject...but I've always wanted to live in a cottage...
it would be a dream come true.

Posted by: priscus (8244) Report abuse
I have not known them do this anywhere other than Lincolnshire, but the local authority used to inform us what food crops it was safe to grow.

In my particular locality, it was generally all except some brassicas (Winter cabbage and ditto for spring planted - Autumn harvested) which, they told us, were concentrating too much heavy metal contaminants from vehicle exhausts and industrial fall-out.

Posted by: priscus (8244) Report abuse

The house in which I lived was called 'Farthings Cottage'. I had at first assumed that it was a twee name given by the party doing the conversion, maybe a decade or so earlier than my time there.

Doing some research, at a later date, I discovered that one of the cottages incorporated had been the fourth ings cottage,
and just as with our money, usage has transformed 'Fourthings' to 'Farthings'.

Posted by: ann-spam (3470)  Report abuse
Flowers still in full bloom

Posted by: PeterP (7618) Report abuse
Most of the sunflowers are in full bloom,One about 7ft tall just getting ready to bloom. The rain has done the roses which are in pots some good they are in flower 2nd time round

Posted by: momac (10735)  Report abuse
I took some sunflower seeds out of bird seed,planted them and have some
gorgeous sunflowers.At the beginning of the year sent for a pink pampas
grass which is now about six foot tall,but no plumes yet,I'm hoping to have
some pink plumes next year..can anyone.assure me that I will see some next year. Ta.

Posted by: priscus (8244) Report abuse
Anyone know how early I can get away with planting Garlic?

I know the traditional advice is plant on the shortest day, harvest on the longest.

But I want to replant some cloves from the garlic I have grown, and harvested this Summer, and I do not think they will last, in good condition until December.

Have planted, times past in November, but that was in the South. September, in the north of England - well I just don't know.

Posted by: ann-spam (3470)  Report abuse
my flowers are still doing fine despite the changeable weather

Posted by: marsin (181) Report abuse
Got up this morning and the water in the bird bath is solid ice. Yesterday l brought 12 plants, trees, bushes indoors for the winter.
Had a lovely summer, enjoyed my garden. The leaves are all falling making the lawn colourful. Will have to rake approx 30 bin bags of leaves..most go into compost. l am going to try drying some geraniums for next year..any hints please.

Posted by: PeterP (7618) Report abuse
Yesterday I moved my Cordyline from the decking into the greenhouse to over winter. Got up this morning and my car was full of frost/ice. I think I made the right move with the Cordyline and should not now loose it to the frost/ice.

Posted by: ann-spam (3470)  Report abuse
Some of my plants in pots still flowering.

Posted by: PeterP (7618) Report abuse
Ann-spam look after them as the frost is here

Posted by: momac (10735)  Report abuse
Watching a documentary about Eva Peron, in one scene beautiful trees
growing in the street were lilac and looked absolutely gorgeous,looked on
Google to find the name of them..Jacaranda..How I'd love to have one of
them in the garden,but don't think they would survive our weather,does
anyone own one or know anyone that has managed to grow one.

Posted by: Anne (3766)  Report abuse
Momac.... did you ever find a pink pampas grass?

Posted by: momac (10735)  Report abuse
Yes Anne,from Amazon..there's plenty of growth on it but no grasses as yet
only last night I was googling the best time for pruning,which seems to be
at the end of Winter,I'm hoping I will be able to see pink grasses next
Spring..here's hoping,I'll be delighted if it happens ..I've wanted one for so long.

Posted by: jacks (345)  Report abuse
I've been a keen gardener for years now. I acquired an allotment 9 yrs ago, and apart from the first couple of years, have struggled to grow carrots. It was very frustrating, and so I had a mooch around the internet in the hope of some advice.Turns out that if you sow the seed and don't keep it watered regularly; i.e. every day, the seed will fail to germinate. This year I made sure to do just that and I succeeded with a reasonable crop. Just thought the advice might help someone.

Posted by: priscus (8244) Report abuse
The late Professor Alan Gemmell (Keel University & BBC Gardeners' Question Time) had a good technique for growing carrots.

1 Thrust a crowbar into the earth, and waggle it around to create a conical hole, about half a metre deep.

2 Fill said hole with John Innes No3 Compost.

3 Plant a couple of seed of a large-growing carrot variety such as St Valery. (Maybe more suitable varieties now available: this was 50 years ago.)

4 Discard the weaker of the pair of seedlings.

5 Win first prize at your local garden produce show.

Posted by: momac (10735)  Report abuse
Well I've pruned the Wisteria,next job is to prune my Pink Pampas grass,
have googled it,and says to prune when new shoots start to show..round
about this month or next..I just hope that it's right,if it grows pink plumes I'll
have a party to celebrate.

Posted by: priscus (8244) Report abuse
I think that I have lost all of my Snowdrops.

Well into January, and none have showed so far.

They did not do well last year, so perhaps already weakened.

Snowdrop bulbs are prone to dehydration, so I guess the prolonged drought of 2018 has finished them off.

Daffs are coming along well though. Likely to bloom before the Forsythia again this year.

Anyone else lost their Snowdrops?

Posted by: ann-spam (3470)  Report abuse
Monaco my pink flowers in my garden pot are still doing well

Posted by: jarvo (29627)  Report abuse
My Wallflowers have flowered!

Posted by: priscus (8244) Report abuse

I have mentioned these in the past, and got asked where to obtain them from. (They are a tasty spud)

They are not always available in UK.

Just seen that Thompson and Morgan are offering them at the mo, should anyone fancy growing a batch.

Posted by: ann-spam (3470)  Report abuse
The snow drops and daffodil plants are coming but yet again im to late to plant any .

Posted by: Anne (3766)  Report abuse
Just bought three brunnera, "Alexander's great" and five heuchra which came with eight free miniature lupins. I have temporarily potted them and left them in the greenhouse. Should be ok to plant out in a few weeks.

Posted by: priscus (8244) Report abuse

Wilko currently have in a reasonable range of varieties.

Cheaper than most suppliers.

Too early to plant out. We could still get a severe freeze, but now is a good time to chit. ie Spread them out, eyes/sprouts facing upwards, in a place free from frost. The growth over next few weeks comes from energy contained in the tuber, rather than photosynthesis, so they may as well get under way with it.

Posted by: priscus (8244) Report abuse
Something really unusual this year!

It has never happened before!

Some Daffodils have emerged in a strawberry bed, which is adjacent, although separated by a path.

It is possible some creature had been taking bulbs, lost some in the strawberry patch, which managed to get buried and have now sprung.

I am also wondering if I have got some which have sprung from seed. If so, likely to be five years or so before any blooms show. Wonder if yours truly will still be around to see them.

Will they survive? They show reduced vigour, which is to be expected compared with plant which has all the energy contained in the bulb behind it!

Do not know what to expect, as I grow a range (nine, I think) of variety of daffs. So these maybe a result of cross pollination.

Always a chance of a mutation, and a new variety with seed grown: that would be interesting, though the probability is low, and I have less than a dozen specimens.

Still, will watch for an opportune time to move them from the strawberry bed to a place where I can grow them on with a degree of protection.

Will have to see what develops over next few years.

Posted by: ann-spam (3470)  Report abuse
Its definately gardening weather .

Posted by: Anne (3766)  Report abuse
My gardening over the last week or two has mainly consisted of clearing wind/storm rubbish. Up to now I am on my seventh green bin full. What is annoying the majority of the rubbish is from beech trees and hedges. I don't have any of this species.

Posted by: PeterP (7618) Report abuse
DON'T fall in the trap plenty of frosty nights to come

Posted by: priscus (8244) Report abuse

Last three years, even though we had mild Winters, we also had cold springs: Frost on May day in my neck of the woods.

Now is the time for all the indoor prep.

Chit spuds.

Start Toms and such like under glass, or alt frost protection. They'll be OK there for a month, and you can start to harden them off for outdoors come April, weather permitting, or even May should we have a frosty April.

Get seeds into heated propagator to germinate, and transfer to pots 2 - 3 weeks hence.

Ann-spam, if you want daffs......

You can plant the bulbs more or less any time you can get them, though some will rot if you plant them too early in the year.

To get spring blooms, the bulbs really need to be in the ground by September of the previous year. Too late, and they will still grow, though you may find many are blind (no blooms) and you then have another year to wait to get them.

I see most supermarkets and bargain stores offer bags of daff bulbs in August, and if unsold by Sept, discount to just a couple of quid.

Posted by: priscus (8244) Report abuse
Same thing happens every year.

Winter relaxes its grip.

My Daffodil's bloom.

The mad March gale flattens them, and snaps the stems of the flowers!

Posted by: ann-spam (3470)  Report abuse
Priscus thanks for the tip also bad winds spoiling all the flowers .

Posted by: priscus (8244) Report abuse
Although I love daffs, I am seriously considering ceasing to grow them.

So far, about 30% of the daffs have been snapped of at the base of the flower stem. And we still have more damaging winds to come.

I will be sad to do so, daffs attract more complements from people who pass by than owt else int garden. It used to be roses, until Black Spot devastated them. Guess I will be seeking a new ornamental display plant for my garden, heaven knows what though? Have a lot of Tulips, but they too are troubled (Tulip Fire disorder)

Fuchsias and Clematis doing well, but wonder if they in turn are going to be problematic!

Open to suggestions.

Posted by: priscus (8244) Report abuse
More than 50% of daffs felled by the wind now.

Wondering if there will be ANY left by the end of the week!

Posted by: priscus (8244) Report abuse
Have any of you any experience of aerial layering roses?

I know it is not considered necessary, as roses grown easily from cuttings, but it is not right time of year to take a cutting, and I want to replace a bare root rose planted last Autumn, which failed to survive the (admittedly very mild) Winter. (All those bought from garden centre survived: one variety I did not find so bought for £18 on eBay. The second time I have found rose from eBay failed to survive!)

I had anticipated filling the gap by purchasing a pot grown replacement, but having so far failed to locate one, now considering the aerial layering option.

Any advice greatly appreciated.

Posted by: PeterP (7618) Report abuse
Was going to get my Cordyline out of the greenhouse. Glad I changed my mind has there was a severe frost yesterday plus icy winds and rain all day. Will now wait till the end of April before moving it.

Posted by: ann-spam (3470)  Report abuse
maybe right to do that peterp has weather is so changeable flowers and plants coming through slowly .

Posted by: ann-spam (3470)  Report abuse
maybe right to do that peterp has weather is so changeable flowers and plants coming through slowly .

Posted by: PeterP (7618) Report abuse
Completed building a new rockery and planted the cordyline in the centre. Next step is to plant the potatoes in the raised bed then clear/clean the greenhouse ready for the missus to get seed trays planted up

Posted by: Anne (3766)  Report abuse
Before I went away I prepared my bean wigwams in pots. The morning after I returned I planted the bean seeds. The following two mornings (Sat/Sun) all beans taken leaving a mess. Moved them into the greenhouse until sprouted. At present am trying to thin out bluebells, they are beginning to become a nuisance.

Posted by: momac (10735)  Report abuse
Just got back from garden centre got bedding begonias for window box and
couple of troughs in back garden..planted runner beans the other day and
tomatoes are in breenhouse..I just love this time of year....but am hoping
that the pink pampas grass I planted last year produces pink plumes..if it
does,I'll be over the moon...if not..

Posted by: PeterP (7618) Report abuse
Got missus out into the greenhouse to pot up Sunflowers and some Peas for the grandkidsSome of the potatoes are starting to poke through not be long before I will be banking them up.All the plants which I put into the new rockery have started to grow none died back due to late frosts(touch wood).

Posted by: priscus (8244) Report abuse
Just came across this.

Not done it before, but will be trying it.

When growing cordon tomatoes, it is common to pinch-out the side shoots which form between main stem and leaf stem.

I have just discovered the alternative strategy: to remove them with a proper pruning cut, and to pot them up to grow on as cuttings, They won't all survive, but, conditions being favourable many will grow into more mature plants. They take faster then starting from germinating seeds, but mature later than the parent plant. As such if brought inside, or under glass, they serve to extend your tomato cropping season.

Worth a try, I guess.

Posted by: ann-spam (3470)  Report abuse
I have over watered my Tomato plants they have died .

Posted by: momac (10735)  Report abuse
Ann,get another couple more..try B&Q then look on google on how to look
after them.

Posted by: priscus (8244) Report abuse
My first strawberry of the season ripened today.

Unfortunately a bird got to it before I did, so had to sling it!

Will have to decide if I am going to net the plants. Some years I do, and some, I don't bother.

Frustrating that birds will take one peck at the berry, (evidenced by the beak-shaped impression left) and the remains are just waste!

Posted by: ann-spam (3470)  Report abuse
Mu strawberry are flowering so I'm keeping them covered with netting .

Posted by: momac (10735)  Report abuse
Good for you Ann..PS we got little Gizmo today.

Posted by: priscus (8244) Report abuse
It was traditional to place straw under the berries to keep them off the ground, as ground contact tends to make them rot.

However, I live in a City, so straw not easily obtainable, and these days, not cheap. It also acts as a refuge to harbour slugs, which can devastate the strawberry crop.

You can buy strawberry mats. It is much cheaper to buy your strawberries from the shop than embark upon that course.

Last couple of years, tried using plastic Picnic forks to support the fruit away from ground, but they frequently caused stem to break, and the fruit to rot anyway, so another failure.

This year, trying some DIY strawberry mats cut from those waxed card party plates.

Just have to keep experimenting

Posted by: PeterP (7618) Report abuse
I have two pear trees in the back garden and they are full of small fruit. Over the last few days some of the fruit has fallen off the branches and I thought something was wrong. But on looking it up it is natural for some of the fruit to fall during June, Natures way of thinning the crop.And I hope I get a nice crop of pears later in the year

Posted by: momac (10735)  Report abuse
PeterP..I've obviously pruned my pear tree all wrong,I only
have half a dozen pears on mine,supposedly followed all instructions,so hopefully next year I'll do better.

Posted by: PeterP (7618) Report abuse
Momac My pear trees were planted about 5years ago.
1st 2years nothing at all
3rd year got a good crop
last year about 20 pears all riddled with some form of bug
this year trees have been sprayed and got plenty of bloom followed by small pears.

Posted by: momac (10735)  Report abuse
Thank you Peter my tree is two years old so I supposd I'm
asking too much too early.

Posted by: priscus (8244) Report abuse
Think that this year, I will again have to write off the strawberry crop.

When we needed rain to swell the fruit, we had drought.

Now, when sun needed to ripen fruit, incessant rain.

Posted by: PeterP (7618) Report abuse
Hoping to get sunflowers into the garden soon. They are growing as single plugs in the greenhouse but are starting to be a bit legging and I dont want to put them into bigger pots.If the weather does not improve by the week end then I may have to repot them

Posted by: Anne (3766)  Report abuse
Been splitting a large hosta with a spread of approx four feet by three. The curious thing is, it smells strongly of garlic yet I have never grown or seen wild garlic anywhere in my garden. Any answers anyone?
Not imagination my hands smell of garlic too.

Posted by: ann-spam (3470)  Report abuse
Several more strawberrys this year .

Posted by: PeterP (7618) Report abuse
We have had nothing but rain for nearly 2 weeks and the 1st day of sunshine and I saw some one watering their plants

Posted by: retep1949 (591) Report abuse
They could be giving the plants a feed

Posted by: PeterP (7618) Report abuse
Retep should imagine they would use a watering can or a tank of feed attached to the hose pipe. This person was just using a hose pipe and spraying the foliage probably watered the lawn after we went byEven I have POT PLANTS which do not get a lot of rainwater but a bucket of water every few days when it is really dry weather will suffice

Posted by: jo anne (32693)   Report abuse
Wigan & Leigh Hospice Gardens will be open to the public next Sunday, 21st July - Link

Posted by: ann-spam (3470)  Report abuse
Not many more flowers to come through now but i have enjoyed them in bloom this year .

Posted by: PeterP (7618) Report abuse
Sun flowers now starting to get their heads on and the Montbretia is in full bloom.Both pear trees are full of pears but they are on the small side maybe the mix of sunshine and rain will boost their growth.

Posted by: priscus (8244) Report abuse
Jackamani (Clematis) has been this year's star performer for me. Seems to have coped with the weather extremes better than owt else int garden.

Posted by: momac (10735)  Report abuse
Priscus..the Clematis is my favorite plant,I'll have to keep an eye open for
Jackamani next Spring,I'm going to have a toot on Google to have a look at
it's colour.

Posted by: momac (10735)  Report abuse
Just had a look..the white one is beautiful.

Posted by: jo anne (32693)   Report abuse
Wigan & Leigh Hospice Garden Party on Sat 3rd August, 12pm - 4pm, admission free (Link)

A blog about the garden by Jim - thehospicegardener.com

Posted by: PeterP (7618) Report abuse
Disappointed with the sun flowers,seem stunted in height and some have flowered and the wind and rain has ripped the petals off.Even the potatoes which I planted in about 8rows are thin in places and some areas have no potatoes at all growing

Posted by: momac (10735)  Report abuse
Peter,I've been disappointed with a couple of plants this year,the runner
beans did nothing at all..my two year old pink pampas grass produce no
plumes at all..I thought it would bloom in its second year..but nothing.

Posted by: PeterP (7618) Report abuse
Momac (googled) your p/pampas should flower from Sept- Feb and any where from 2to 4 years old

Posted by: momac (10735)  Report abuse
Lovely,thank you Peter..I googled it myself but didn't find that information.
thanks again..I'll look forward to seeing them.

Posted by: PeterP (7618) Report abuse
Momac I types in"when does pink pampas grass bloom"and clicked on the telegraph page

Posted by: momac (10735)  Report abuse
Thank you again Peter ,I've bookmarked it..and as soon as I see any pink
plumes I will let you know....you've been very helpful.

Posted by: ann-spam (3470)  Report abuse
Maybe it's time to start collecting seeds fir next year .

Posted by: priscus (8244) Report abuse

Now would be a good time to plant daff bulbs, to get blooms next spring, should you find any.

Posted by: priscus (8244) Report abuse
Lifted the last of my spuds today, so it will be back to the poor quality shop-bought stuff in a week or two.

I have not grown spuds every year, and last few years crop has been extremely poor. This lot have done better than any previous crop, in spite of our weather extremes.

They were Charlotte variety from Wilko. May well get these again next year.

Posted by: PeterP (7618) Report abuse
Last of the sunflowers now in flower (multi headed) rain and wind battered them this morningAll of them are staked but one seems to be snapping away at the base, put a short cane near to the base and tied it off but I think its to late to save it.

Posted by: priscus (8244) Report abuse
Some spring onions which I had missed: they had formed VERY small bulbs, but no white stem, (Variety=White Lisbon)had gone dormant and lost all their growth over the summer, and the recent dry spell. The bulbs small enough to have virtually disappeared among the vegetative dross on the soil surface.

Now, following the rains, they are sprouting green growth once again.

I do not know if they are likely to survive over Winter, or if they will produce anything worth eating, either prior to, or after the Winter period.

Let me know, please, if you have been able to harvest White Lisbon, when grown on for a second season like this.

Posted by: jo anne (32693)   Report abuse
Apple Day in Haigh Hall Walled Kitchen Garden
Sunday 27th Oct, 11am - 3pm, Facebook

Help the volunteers crush the harvest of apples and taste the delicious juice.
Fun activities such as Apple Bobbing, Ballooon Bike, Craft activities and more.
Find Sally Scarecrow's lost ribbons and enjoy the Kitchen Garden.
Take home apples, pears and other produce. (Donations requested for activities & produce.)
All donations go toward developing and maintaining the Walled Kitchen garden by the volunteers.
Ask about volunteering.

Posted by: Anne (3766)  Report abuse
It's been a funny season for cosmos this year. They have grown into forest size plants, as tall as me and bushy, with no blooms at all during summer. I was on the verge of destroying them but now many of them are in full bloom. I have read that it is the same all over the country, an odd happening altogether.

Posted by: cordyline (5350)   Report abuse
Cosmos, I might try some next year
Are they susceptible To Slugs ?

Posted by: Anne (3766)  Report abuse
Cordy.....not experienced any slug trouble. I should think the leaves aren't succulent enough. I put a photo of mine on PAD some time ago, I think it must have been the second year I grew them. I don't seem to have been bothered with slugs for a number of years, don't know why even though I have a number of big healthy hostas. PAD July 2014.

Posted by: cordyline (5350)   Report abuse
Last Wednesday I planted many bulbs in my son's garden
Daffodils, Tulips, Hyacinth, Crocus and Muscari
A couple of dozen Winter flowering Pansies on top of them

Today I found a few half eaten Crocus bulbs scattered around the garden and some Pansies uprooted

They do know that Squirrels frequent their garden
Would covering the soil with bark chippings help ?

Posted by: Anne (3766)  Report abuse
If there are squirrels about there could also be mice and they are little devils where bulbs are concerned. I haven't found anything that helps other than fine wire mesh to be taken up in spring and even then they get underneath. Frustrating I know.

Posted by: cordyline (5350)   Report abuse
Weather still mild
No sign of frost in Pemberton; none forecast in the next couple of weeks
I need to plant several bulbs in this planter but the Petunias and Dahlias are still going strong
Seems a pity to pull them out while still flowering
How long can I leave the bulb planting ?

Spring flowering bulbs of course, Daffs, Tulips, Crocus etc

Posted by: momac (10735)  Report abuse
Hello Cordy,just had a toot on Google,it says you can plant as late as
December providing thr ground isn't frozen

Posted by: PeterP (7618) Report abuse
Cordy is that a polystyrene fish box in the background

Posted by: cordyline (5350)   Report abuse
No Peter, not polystyrene -- it's a planter that I made from some old decking type wood that was being scrapped

The internal dividing boards are to separate four Clematis that are being grown on before planting in the ground -- will keep the roots from intertwining

Might photograph it tomorrow

Momac; I might wait a couple of weeks then remove the Dahlias and Petunias, the Delphinium and perennial Lobelia will stay of course

Posted by: cordyline (5350)   Report abuse
Here is the plant box

Bulbs are Iris and Freesia;

Clematis varieties
Miss Bateman, Piilu, Rouge Cardinal and Hagely Hybrid

Posted by: PeterP (7618) Report abuse
Cordy very nice sorry I called it a fish box

Posted by: PeterP (7618) Report abuse
I planted out a cordyline earlier this year (used to be in a large pot and I over wintered it in the green house).Do I risk it and leave it alone or tie it up and put fleece round it

Posted by: cordyline (5350)   Report abuse
Peter, we have two healthy Cordylines growing in our small garden
Never protected them in any way, although we have had several mild winters

Posted by: cordyline (5350)   Report abuse
Planted some Dwarf Gladioli bulbs in July - a tad late in the season, but a few have flowered

Here are the last couple to bloom

Photos taken with an eighteen year old Canon G3; 4 Megapixels

Posted by: ann-spam (3470)  Report abuse
Lovely Gladioli flowers nice colours .

Posted by: PeterP (7618) Report abuse
Earlier this year I disposed of the birdtable due to lack of use. The other day I threw some bread and broken biscuits out because we had seen a lot of birds in the garden. Once it has stopped raining I will have to clean the soggy mess up No birds been anywhere near the food and I dont want to encourage mice or other vermin

Posted by: priscus (8244) Report abuse
First gardening of the decade, today.

Some long overdue pruning!

Very wet end to 2019 left conditions underfoot too sticky to attempt this until today.

Had to heavily prune some Clematis, and alas spring budding was already occurring, so just hoping I have not killed off the plants.

Some maintenance on the roses if tomorrow brings a sunny day.

Posted by: marsin (181) Report abuse
I bought some turmeric rhizomes from the grocery store-for cooking. I plant a couple of pieces to see if they would grow and now have fresh turmeric. They multiply very fast.I grate a little on my cereal. They grow like fresh ginger.

Posted by: ann-spam (3470)  Report abuse
Marsin Turmeric what does it do for your health .

Posted by: PeterP (7618) Report abuse
Ann-spam Turmeric is good for bad joints

Posted by: marsin (181) Report abuse
Ann-spam..turmeric is anti-inflammatory and antioxidant.
I have turmeric every day along with cinnamon-good for memory.
Crushed flax seeds- omega 3
Dried cranberries- for water works.
All on top of my oatmeal.

Posted by: PeterP (7618) Report abuse
I went into home bargains yesterday and they were selling potato sets for 99p but only about 6 potatoes per bag.This is ok if you want to grow various types of potato or plant earlies and main crop in a limited space.I normally plant main crop potatoes like Maris Piper but think I will try another type this year.Will be preparing the raised bed and putting extra manure in over the next few weeks.

Posted by: Anne (3766)  Report abuse
I have some lilies growing, they are about eighteen inches high. Can't see any buds yet but am amazed by them at this time of year. It's either the amount of rain or spring is on its way.

Posted by: priscus (8244) Report abuse
Peter, Wilko is good for seed potato: not expensive, and reasonable choice of variety.

Posted by: marsin (181) Report abuse
PeterP. I envy you being able to plant so early- approximately 2 ft snow on vegetable garden. Have you grown potatoes in raised beds?

Posted by: marsin (181) Report abuse
PeterP. I envy you being able to plant so early- approximately 2 ft snow on vegetable garden. Have you grown potatoes in raised beds?

Posted by: PeterP (7618) Report abuse
Marsin I built a 8ftx 4ftx18 inch deep raised bed out of decking timber and flagged it all the way round so my missus can get to it and do a bit of gardening with me.We plant potatoes.peas and onions in this bed

Posted by: marsin (181) Report abuse
PeterP. Thank you. Size will fit perfectly . Was the floor of bed also timber?

Posted by: PeterP (7618) Report abuse
Marsin about a quarter of my open area at the rear of my property has a concrete layer under 20mm coloured gravel. Must have been a base for some outbuilding before I bought the property. So the raised bed is on this concrete. Excess water just drains away into the gravel.

Posted by: priscus (8244) Report abuse

These may have been available for a while, but I have only just discovered them.

A hybrid cross between French Bean and Runner Bean. They are claimed to be heavy cropping even in poor weather.

Anyone tried them? (a range of varieties available)

Posted by: priscus (8244) Report abuse
My Jade Plant, aka Money Plant, is enormous: height and spread both in excess of Five Feet. It is over 20 years old, and today really surprised me: it is flowering for the very first time.

I do hope it is not one of those plants which just deteriorates once it has bloomed.

Rosemary plants which I have wintered indoors, also flowering. (I take some in, and leave some outdoors. Amongst he latter, some survive Winter, and some do not. It strangely does not seem to be severity of Winter cold that determines survival.)

I guess I am less happy about the Rosemary blooming. It is usually the case that herbs lose potency after they have bloomed. The plant's biological imperative is next to put all its resources into its seed.

Posted by: PeterP (7618) Report abuse
I Was reading about people who are now going to start growing their own fruit and veg. Do some of them not realise it can take from weeks to months to grow most crops? fruit trees can take years before they bear fruit. I bought my seed potatoes and put them in egg trays to start them off in the shed in the next week or so I will move them into the greenhouse to get them spritting better and about the second week in April they may be ready to sow and I should have a crop about the back end of August if I am lucky

Posted by: momac (10735)  Report abuse
I tried last year Peter,but wasn't very successful..but may have another try
this year..my greenhouse isn't very big though

Posted by: priscus (8244) Report abuse
I am at the same stage with my spuds, (growing variety Charlotte this year)

We are not getting heavy frosts, even an overnight frost has been very light so far. I am thinking of trying a frost protection technique called 'Wall of Water'. It will be easier to look it up with a search engine than for me to try to explain on here. Have a few dozen empty 2L PEP bottles from which I could make them. It will make earlier planting an option.

Last few Winters have been very mild, but in my neck of the woods, last three years we had overnight frost on May Day.

Posted by: PeterP (7618) Report abuse
Momac I am only using the greenhouse because the potatoes need some light and at least 10 deg C to sprit. I have got my raised bed ready and dug some manure into the soil. Just hope when I plant out the frost will have gone. I was the same has you last year half the potatoes did not mature but those that did I got a good yield.It is nearly time to start the sunflowers off in the greenhouse.

Posted by: ann-spam (3470)  Report abuse
It was lovely to bein the garden yesterday all my seeds and plants budding

Posted by: momac (10735)  Report abuse
I wish I'd known how far wild garlic can spread in the garden,and how to get rid of it.

Posted by: priscus (8244) Report abuse
momac, have you tried 'Roundup'?

I find buying the concentrate works best: the ready to use is too dilute for many of the things I have needed to target.

Posted by: momac (10735)  Report abuse
Thank you priscus,I'll certainly have a look for that..I've got garlic all over
the back garden at the moment..it was a tiny piece from Yorkshire a few
years ago and have been struggling with it ever since...here's hoping.

Posted by: priscus (8244) Report abuse
Tesco have stocked the concentrate, this time of year season, but do not know what is going on with their gardening section given the Covid-19 disruption.

Posted by: PeterP (7618) Report abuse
Sunflower seeds now potted up in the greenhouse.I have been given some "Charlotte "potatoes which have about 6-9inch sprits on them planted up half of the raised bed with them. Put my main crop potatatoes"Pentland Crown" into the greenhouse to sprit.

Posted by: priscus (8244) Report abuse
I grew 'Charlotte' last year.

I was sufficiently pleased with them to buy the same variety again to plant this year.

Posted by: PeterP (7618) Report abuse
Just been reading about crop rotation and the reasons why you should not plant potatoes year on year in the same spot. From the risk of carring diseases over from year to year to taking all the nutrients out of the soil. I plant in a raised bed but take approx half of the soil out every year and spread this around my garden beds, I then refill the bed with a mix of fresh soil and manure well mixed in. I also keep new soil in bags ready to bank up the plants has they grow. Maybe next year I will grow some other type of veg in the raised bed and use some of the bags of soil to grow potatoes.

Posted by: ann-spam (3470)  Report abuse
Does horse manure do your garden soil good.

Posted by: PeterP (7618) Report abuse
Ann-spam one of the best manures is from chickens then horse manure then cow manure.

Posted by: jo anne (32693)   Report abuse
@RHSBridgewater (13th April):
We're launching ‘Grow at home’ to support the nation to get gardening during lockdown and to grow a new generation of gardeners.

We'll be sharing advice to help you get growing with #GrowAtHome over the coming weeks and months. Find out more: www.rhs.org.uk/growathome

Posted by: cordyline (5350)   Report abuse
Delphinium flower buds

Photographed this afternoon

Posted by: cordyline (5350)   Report abuse
Been a good Spring for Tulips
Hyacinths now faded

Posted by: jo anne (32693)   Report abuse
Those are beautiful, Cordyline! We have a few tulips that reappear every year too.

My Wild Garden has launched as part of GM’s 5 Year Environment Plan
to help wildlife thrive in your outdoor space.

Request your free booklet here: www.lancswt.org.uk

Posted by: jo anne (32693)   Report abuse
Wigan Council has launched Bloomin’ Beautiful – an online gardening competition (17th Apr) Link

• Take a photo of your garden (or hanging basket, window box or pot) looking its best
• Write a few words about why you love your greenspace
• Email to ourtown@wigan.gov.uk along with your name, address and age

More info: HERE (Closing date - 31st May)

Posted by: cordyline (5350)   Report abuse
Six Tulips

Posted by: PeterP (7618) Report abuse
High winds yesterday caused a lot of damage in the gardens completely stripped all the flowers off the rhododendron and a lot of the azalea flowers are now on the lawns. In the raised bed the potato stems are all on their sides even though they were well banked up.Will have to clean up tomorrow has winds are forcast for today,Will try to bank the potatoes up later.

Posted by: Anne (3766)  Report abuse
Same here Peter.....fifteen redhot pokers were in danger of snapping off, been out to stake them. Should have put my tin hat on as all sorts of branches flying about. Even my wheel barrow has been flipped on its side. Lots of small plumbs blown away, windy until tomorrow.

Posted by: FAT MICK (1056) Report abuse
My wheelbarrow was stood on its end and its walked across the garden to the otherside
Also my very tall Arum lilies have been blown down


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