The Plot Thickens: Gardening Thread 2019

TrudyTrudy Heaven Host
Plant your discussions about all things garden-related here and we'll see what comes up.
«134

Comments

  • TrudyTrudy Heaven Host
    edited January 16
    Last year's gardening thread has been repotted in Limbo, should you need to refer to it.
  • Well - can someone tell my lawn (in South Wales) to stop growing for a bit and follow proper winter behaviour. If things go on as they are, I'll have to soon cut it for the second time this year!
  • PigletPiglet All Saints Host, Circus Host
    As the regulars on the British threads in AS will know, I'm no gardener, but I had to pop my head round the door of the potting-shed to say what a great thread title! :smiley:
  • This afternoon I compiled a wish list from the seed catalogue and was rather shocked at the price, even taking into account the 45% discount I get through the allotments association, so I’ve been going through old seeds to see what I can get away with. Tomorrow I’ll see how much I’ve reduced it by. I’m sure that even the original figure is less than buying fresh veg, but it’s still a shock!
  • TrudyTrudy Heaven Host
    Piglet wrote: »
    As the regulars on the British threads in AS will know, I'm no gardener, but I had to pop my head round the door of the potting-shed to say what a great thread title! :smiley:

    Coming up with a title is really the ONLY thing I will ever be able to contribute to a gardening thread, so I gave it my all.
  • daisydaisy wrote: »
    a wish list from the seed catalogue and was rather shocked at the price,
    Have you compared the prices to those in old seed catalogues? Or, even more shocking, compared the quantity of seeds in a packet?

  • oh, well, I hadn’t thought of the inflation factor, it was more that I thought it a bit extravagant. The same happens every year. To be honest, I probably don’t have the room to grow everything on my wishlist so a bit of realistic planning is needed.
  • I am a wuss. I have a large number of snails overwintering under some plant pots. This is obviously an ideal opportunity to kill them off, but I don't want to do that. What are the pros and cons of filling a bucket with them and transferring them to nearby woodland?
  • Well, if you take them far enough away you'll override their homing instinct - link to an enjoyable article on the subject.
  • Personally I like to hear them land on a hard surface - I reckon that gives the birds an easier task when it comes to eating them.
  • I was worried that moving them whilst they are overwintering might prove fatal to them, but it is an ideal opportunity to get rid of them whilst they have conveniently gathered themselves together.
  • Well, if you take them far enough away you'll override their homing instinct - link to an enjoyable article on the subject.
    I have a friend with a hosta nursery who found this out the hard way. Now she uses nematodes in Feb, when she reckons they are most effective on the hatchlings.
  • Personally I like to hear them land on a hard surface - I reckon that gives the birds an easier task when it comes to eating them.


    Me too - I tend to fling them onto my neighbour’s garage roof which makes a satisfying “clunk” sound but one of these days I’m sure to fling one onto their car & set off the alarm.
  • 0ne hundred and eleven snails have been relocated from my garden to some woods half a mile away. I distributed them around hollows at the base of trees which I thought would provide some shelter. :)
  • Good job, N.E.Quine. Two days ago I planted 10 lily of the valley bulbs along the side of the garage. Today I went out to find them dug up. They were not eaten, or carried away, just dug up and laying beside the holes. So I replanted them. Never had this happen before. We have deer and other woodland critters along with neighborhood cats. I can not make a guess what would do this.
  • MooMoo Kerygmania Host
    Years ago, various plants and bulbs got dug up, but not destroyed.

    I finally hit on sticking a circle of bamboo skewers around the things I planted. It worked very well.
  • Thus far this year my main contribution to gardening has been last weekend when, with the help of the neighbours, I stripped the greenery from no less than 17 Leylandii on my garden boundary, up to twenty feet high. I now have a row of trunks each about six feet high and a pile of greenery that makes Becher's Brook look positively inviting. Once that has been shifted I may notice the extra space I should now have - but I've got to clear that up a bit before I shift the trunks. Then it'll be planting something nicer - a mixed native hedge is the plan.

    AG
  • My grandfather planted Leylandii behind a beech hedge, both at the same time, to give the beech hedge enough time to grow. We got the joy of taking the Leylandii down.
  • We are planning our response to Brexit and despite being non-gardeners and not having much garden we are contemplating courgettes, as these are a) mostly imported and b) easier than aubergines. I intend to start them off indoors, then grow them in bags outside.
  • sionisais wrote: »
    We are planning our response to Brexit and despite being non-gardeners and not having much garden we are contemplating courgettes, as these are a) mostly imported and b) easier than aubergines. I intend to start them off indoors, then grow them in bags outside.
    Such a good plan. I guess you already know to be prepared to water more than you think you might need to because in bags they can’t get their roots down on a water hunt. At home I’ve already started to collect the water that I run to get the hot out.
  • daisydaisy wrote: »
    sionisais wrote: »
    We are planning our response to Brexit and despite being non-gardeners and not having much garden we are contemplating courgettes, as these are a) mostly imported and b) easier than aubergines. I intend to start them off indoors, then grow them in bags outside.
    Such a good plan. I guess you already know to be prepared to water more than you think you might need to because in bags they can’t get their roots down on a water hunt. At home I’ve already started to collect the water that I run to get the hot out.

    Watering is emphasised in everything I read, and they do mention how important it is to get the water to the plant, not on the leaves. It makes sense as a) all plants need water and b) courgettes, like marrows, cucumber and the rest are almost entirely water.

    Friends have grown chili peppers for a few years. They are good, but the strength varies from mild'n'tasty to fire alarm.
  • I am intending to cut down on courgettes this year, I always end up giving loads away, after filling the freezer with kilos of courgette/onion/tomato stew to use in the winter, and making various pickles.
    I will use the extra space for growing Florence fennel, which is much pricier than courgettes in the supermarkets, and which I am just beginning to have a little success with.
  • My seed order includes Florence fennel and courgettes - I just hope I get more than the one or two courgettes I’ve harvested in the past - I have glut envy.
  • Spring must be around the corner: today my seed order arrived (albeit in the care of my neighbour as I was out) and I came home from the Potato Day with 8 varieties (5 of each - hopefully there is room on the allotment!) plus dried seaweed (as potato food), onion sets and a honeyberry plant.
  • daisydaisy wrote: »
    My seed order includes Florence fennel and courgettes - I just hope I get more than the one or two courgettes I’ve harvested in the past - I have glut envy.

    I remember this from dad's attempts at growing fruit'n'veg. Glut or nothing. Carrots and lettuces did well and provided we kept the bugs away we did a good line in green beans. On the other hand I remember one tomato over three seasons! We had a lot of chutney.

  • In order to get a full blast of the sunshine I spent an hour on the plot, mostly weeding (speedwell and groundsel, even though these are good food for caterpillars - there’s plenty on other plots) but also removing 3 vertical scaffolding poles that I inherited over 10 years ago (not one for instant decisions) - they were buried about 12 inches so a lot of wiggling freed them up. It’ll probably take me another 10 years to decide what to do with them.
  • I was also encouraged by the sunshine (and an overflowing kitchen waste bin) to do a bit in the garden.
    Uncovered the compost bin, dug up and trimmed a few leeks, cut a tiny head of romanesco for tonight's dinner and added the debris to the compost along with the veg trimmings from the kitchen.
    By this time I had lost all feeling in my fingertips, so returned indoors for lunch and a nap.

    Have not been well for some time, but decided that the mental lift from being in the sun, and actually moving about, was probably going to do me more good than sitting about indoors.
    Did take it out of me a bit, but no repercussions so far.
  • Today I took veg waste to the compost heap at my plot and came away with a bunch of snowdrops, a lovely promise of spring around the corner.
  • Still working on the massive hedge - now reduced to three stumps tall enough and flat enough to stand pots on plus two dead trees of an interesting enough shape to grow creepers up.

    If we can get the fence up tomorrow, I'll order the trees next weekend...

    AG
  • With the help of the Knotweed, I've got it up!

    The fence, that is. Easier than I'd expected - driving posts was largely unaffected by roots, thank goodness - and the roll of fencing fitted the gap neatly. Not having a 10 metre tape, I knew it was going to be in the right region (it's sold in 10m rolls), but was expecting to have to fill a gap.

    Bodging needed at either end, but that's what comes of needing to keep the existing fences at either end until either other things are finished or the hedge grows up a bit.

    AG
  • Gosh, I'm exhausted just reading about what you've done!
  • Not half as much as I am doing it!

    AG
  • jay_emmjay_emm Shipmate
    I found spinich and similar behaved really well at the end of last year (the plant was still alive). So I've planted a new cheap seed set a bit early in the hope they'll be ready for brexit. With the other leafy greens to follow nearer the proper season.

    I have a pile of seeds of containish flowers. I planted a cheap mixed bag of seeds a bit early when it seemed we'd missed winter, the one lot came up just as the snow arrived, but still seems to be alive.
  • Gooseberry and red currant bushes pruned yesterday, apple tree today, to make the most of this sunshine. I’d rather not do it in the rain, which is what is forecast.
  • Ooops. We appear to be maybe moving soon from our rental.
    This would be the rental where one isn't allowed to garden.
    .
    New Home will be Ours and has a lovely garden. I am almost delirious with delight.....
  • MooMoo Kerygmania Host
    The green leaves of my hyacinths are beginning to appear. This makes me doubly happy, because it means spring is coming and because hyacinths are my favorite flowers.
  • Ethne Alba wrote: »
    Ooops. We appear to be maybe moving soon from our rental.
    This would be the rental where one isn't allowed to garden.
    .
    New Home will be Ours and has a lovely garden. I am almost delirious with delight.....
    Oh how exciting! Have you started planning?
    Moo wrote: »
    The green leaves of my hyacinths are beginning to appear. This makes me doubly happy, because it means spring is coming and because hyacinths are my favorite flowers.
    They’ve got such a delicious scent - I love walking/cycling past gardens where they’re growing.

    I’ve discovered a lovely book to read on breaks at the allotment - “A Sand County Almanac”: I’ve got to May so far. It’s beautifully written, and I look forward to the more environmentally questioning chapters later on.
  • daisydaisy wrote: »
    it means spring is coming and because hyacinths are my favorite flowers.
    I love the scent of hyacinths outdoors, but find them overpowering as indoor bulbs.

    I may have posted before about 'rescuing' hyacinth bulbs discarded after flowering by residents in a care home where I worked. I would pot them in odd places in my garden, and enjoyed the surprise of their lovely scent as they flowered again in the following years.- not so lushly flowered, but smelling just as sweet

  • I had forgotten I had planted hyacinth bulbs in my garden last year and had a lovely surprise by my back gate as I took my first walk around after a week of pouring rain. This is the first time I have ever forgotten I had planted something. I rather enjoyed the surprise. It was like a little gift from myself.
  • There are quite a few magnolias out here. I fear for them as it's too early in the year, and strong winds are forecast for the weekend.
  • ThunderBunkThunderBunk Shipmate
    There are quite a few magnolias out here. I fear for them as it's too early in the year, and strong winds are forecast for the weekend.

    Thankfully mine isn't. Some of ours have peeked out of their buds, and it's a great shame they are not able to change their minds when the chill hits, as it inevitably will.
  • There was a close call in our garden at the start of the week - Mr RoS was going to cut the lawn before the weather changed, but I noticed a couple of sweet violets in flower and gave him a few other jobs to do instead. Now the lawn is full of them!
    (well, not exactly full, we seem to have far fewer than the last couple of years - due to the hot, dry summer maybe?)
  • daisydaisydaisydaisy Shipmate
    Violets are such a subtle flower. Not like the daphne that is very popular around these parts - most people know (or know someone who does) the real Jacqueline Postill whose husband developed this rather heavily scented variety.
  • SandemaniacSandemaniac Shipmate
    Well, I've just taken advantage of a blustery west wind to take down my old compost bin (made from gratis pallets about a dozen years ago, so it owes me nowt), put up a fresh one, and burn the old one.

    There are very few things more viscerally satisfying than having a bonfire on a windy day that whips into a firestorm and hungrily consumes all you put on it, levaing just a pile of hot ash, but I have managed to find one.

    I lit it with a picture of Theresa May.

    AG
  • FredegundFredegund Shipmate
    The wind seems to have dropped here. If I persuade one of the boys to move the ladders for me, I'm going to have a go at pruning the apple trees. I'd been hoping that the wind would do it for me.
    And I thought about this before Monty Don reminded me on Gardener's World on Friday.
  • daisydaisydaisydaisy Shipmate
    I’ve been meaning to prune my apple and cherry trees and wondered if it might be too late so @Fredegund I’m glad you mentioned this. I must catch up with that episode.
  • Tree BeeTree Bee Shipmate
    Monty said an apple tree should be pruned to such a degree that a pigeon could fly through it. I loved this description!
    Feeling happy that we’ve just had our tree pruned properly for the first time since we’ve been in this house; exactly 40 years!
  • OhherOhher Shipmate
    OK, I am in serious need of advice, if anybody can offer it. Last year, based on a childhood memory of deliciously-clove-scented carnations (not these pretty-but-nose-neutral imitations they sell in florists' shops these days) I started (well in advance of frost-free dates) some dianthus. They were VERY slow to germinate, and by the time the soil had warmed up enough for transplant, they were still smaller than I'm comfortable with. I planted the biggest, sturdiest candidates. They most stayed the same size for weeks and weeks, then began to grow a bit, and a couple finally set tiny buds.

    The flowers never opened; the largest of the stalks got to maybe 5-6 inches (they're supposed to reach a foot).

    This year, I'm trying again -- same seed packet. I started earlier, in hope of having bigger, stronger seedlings to transplant. They germinated in 2 days flat. But of about 2 dozen starts, I have maybe a half-dozen seedlings that look at all transplantable (mind you, I can't put these out for 2 more months, if then) Most have damped-off.

    What am I doing wrong? Has anybody here had success with dianthus, and are you willing to share tips? I SO want to have that scent again, and I may not have all that many gardening years left, and growing these myself may be the only way to accomplish this.
  • We had dianthus (pinks?) which we grew from seed, and they did fine. They were perennial, small the first year, and came back several years. I think they want as much sun as they can get, and good drainage--so if you have clay I'd mix in compost and maybe mound up the soil a bit and plant it on top, just to be sure they aren't standing with their roots constantly in water. I'd also make sure they had good air circulation--don't let something bigger crowd or shade them out.

    Basically I think you just want to make sure they don't get and stay all damp, 'cause that's when the fungus gets them.
  • Maybe you would get better results if you bought a dianthus plant that you liked and propagated more from cuttings, rather than trying from seed.

    I have one called Rose de Mai that smells wonderful. I bought the original getting on for 30 years ago, and have taken cuttings from them many times. The ones I have now were brought here from our last house as two small rooted cuttings from which, as they grew, I took other cuttings and are they are delighting me with their scent in all parts of the garden.
Sign In or Register to comment.