Horizon's Gardening Topic

  • Had a quick 1 minute glance over my gardens and spotted a daffodil flower emerging and some hyacinths showing through too. Even got a a few more snowdrops in my front garden too, which is nice.


    As my personal situation has deteriorated since last September as my caring duties have become 24/7, my gardens are looking the worse for wear. Nothing done on them since last October and they are looking messy as I'm stuck inside all the time. Not sure what will happen garden wise this year, but at least I have some spring plants to look forward too, that's the ones which haven't been destroyed by all the various creatures!


    One of my main planters of violas by my front door has been completely destroyed, but most of the other planters have been pretty much left alone, for now. Should be a half decent display when they all come out and I will post piccies if I can. Lots of dafs, hyacinths, tulips and bedding all starting to awaken.:)

    ===


    I have a amaryllis in the kitchen which is just about to flower and I I will post a snap of it when it emerges. It was a Christmas present. It's a monster! Second stem coming too, so should provide plenty of flowers for quite a while.

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  • Sorry to hear your carer duties are affecting the garden.


    There's a roundabout near me that the daffs have been flowering on since mid January. Two of my Amaryllis are also producing buds, they didn't even drop the leaves like about half the others have.


    If the weather's a bit warmer this weekend we'll have to start tidying up the garden. I have a rather overgrown hebe in the front that really needs cutting back. I did some last summer to stimulate growth from lower down the stems. That has happened so I can start to cut off the higher up straggly stuff and make it a bit more compact. Same applies to a small yew nearer the front window that is cutting off the light.


    Fortunately yew can be cut right back and will grow from the cut ends unlike Leylandii. Pity people don't use it more.


    I usually have a small bunch of it in the bathroom as it has a pleasant aroma as the cuttings dry out. Much better than spraying nasty chemicals about.

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  • Sorry to hear your carer duties are affecting the garden.

    Thank you. It is what it is.... I just didn't realise last year when I was doing the gardening, that would be it for a while, the same with the cooking. It's strange how little things like doing a bit of sweeping in the garden or doing a roast can be be missed, when those options are no longer available.


    There's a roundabout near me that the daffs have been flowering on since mid January. Two of my Amaryllis are also producing buds, they didn't even drop the leaves like about half the others have.


    If the weather's a bit warmer this weekend we'll have to start tidying up the garden. I have a rather overgrown hebe in the front that really needs cutting back. I did some last summer to stimulate growth from lower down the stems. That has happened so I can start to cut off the higher up straggly stuff and make it a bit more compact. Same applies to a small yew nearer the front window that is cutting off the light.


    Fortunately yew can be cut right back and will grow from the cut ends unlike Leylandii. Pity people don't use it more.


    I usually have a small bunch of it in the bathroom as it has a pleasant aroma as the cuttings dry out. Much better than spraying nasty chemicals about.

    Didn't know that about the Yew and if you look back in the pics of my garden in this thread or the gallery, you'll see I have Yews too. Three in the back and one in the front garden.


    Considering you're so close to the coast and away from the heat of a big city, those dafs are doing amazing.


    Never had a Amaryllis before, so looking forward to seeing it flower.


    I used to love Hebes, even met the country's foremost expert on them, he lives very close to me. But I made the mistake in recent years of going for all the new coloured hybrid versions grown in the garden centres, which look wonderful the first year and then die off, so don't have anymore now. I should've stuck to the advice I was given.

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  • But I made the mistake in recent years of going for all the new coloured hybrid versions grown in the garden centres

    Mine is a straight white with slight purple tinges. Big leaves, very sturdy.


    Yew is a favorite for hedges and topiary in the larger stately gardens because it takes cutting back without going brown. It's also very long lived and often planted in church cemeteries and allowed to grow into a substantial tree. The one I have just grew so I guess it must have come from a seed left by a bird.

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  • When the hebes were brought over from New Zealand, they were mostly green/blue varieties. Avoid anything red, they all die.


    My three yews in the back garden are on the border with the scum neighbours (spit), so they help to block them out.^^

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  • Just been out triming back the Canary Island Palm. Had a note through the door yesterday by the neighbour that it was pushing over the low wall behind it.


    It's mostly the sawn off and cut off stumps: As the body has got bigger they've started pushing against the wall. Anyway an hour's work with my (blunt! :cursing:) rip saw and there's now a good gap to where the wall will be when re-built. The neighbour says they'll do it as it's their wall. That's true as it's inside their property line but I'll make a good will offering to share the re-build costs. It's only about a 10ft stretch and it is my fault that I didn't notice what was going on.


    They're original to the property and after 100 years or so the morter's got pretty crumbly, not helped by rampant ivy.

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  • Is the ivy yours Heero, or theirs? Not that it matters, ivy won't knock over a wall.


    If their wall is 100 years old, I'm not surprised its crumbling a bit. Good on for your very generous offer, lets hope they refuse the offer because they might be frightened into thinking that the wall will become joint ownership with you, if you help to pay for it.;):evil:

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  • Is the ivy yours Heero, or theirs?

    Does anybody actually "own" ivy. ^^ It's all over the area actually, I pull it out if it gets too aggressive.


    I have another wall that adjoins the next door neighbour. That looks pretty poor too so I really aught to re-point my side at least to stop it disintegration further.

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  • I suppose it depends where the ivy is growing from, but if its growing from everyone, then the answer is no.


    Got to go, be back later.

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  • I now have a pile of stuff to go down the dump. A few weeks ago I got a couple of very tough re-usable, self standing, garden refuse sacks from Lidl (27 Litre) They have two handles at the top and another at the bottom to aid tipping out. Looks like I'll get to use them now.


    There's several more branches on the palm that need to be removed as they shade the garden too much and one is well over the next door neighbours pond. Have to watch out for the short spines near the base of the branch as they're sharp as a razor. I trim them off with secateurs before doing anything else.


    My jelly palm (Butia Capitata) could also do with a "hair cut" of the older fronds as they're getting quite tatty. It's much slower growing and will never be a really big tree. There is a ~100 year old one in Trewidden Gardens in Penzance, it's where I first found out about them. I bought mine at a local nursary down there for £45.


    On the link click the palm symbol in the NE corner of the map to see the tree.


    I think I have a bow saw somewhere with much coarser teeth then my wood saw that'll be better for cutting the stumps.

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  • Actually the sacks are 272 litres and I've filled both of them. They're very neat as well as having handles there's a plastic hoop that you thread in round the neck to keep the top open.


    It'll be a dump run tomorrow morning. Plenty more stuff to cut back and get rid of while the weather holds.

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  • Don't break your back doing all that work, Heero! I have a little experience with tree stumps myslef, which I still haven't forgotten about...:)


    That Trewidden place looks interesting. Never heard of it. Saw your tree there and that Tree Fern Pit area looks interesting where all the mining was done. Definitely a place I want to visit.

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  • Cut my front lawn yesterday, the first cut of the year.:) Was intending to do the back, but it started to rain and I was called away to other things, so hopefully might get a chance to do it tomorrow.


    And although I'm late in posting this, as always when Valentines Day comes around, the birds start nesting. Currently, have Robins and Blackbirds busy building nests in my back garden, but unfortunately they've chosen, as they always do, to nest in the ivy going up my garage and it's too low level. The cats and foxes can easily get to them. More baby bird bloodbaths ahead.:(


    Should I disrupt the birds going about their business, or just let nature take its cause?:/

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  • My blackbird pair keep kicking up a fuss because a couple of magpies are collecting nesting materials. I thought it was cats to start with until I spotted the magpies.


    I need to get out and do some tidying up ahead of some building work in a few months time.


    Taking down the utility lean to and replacing with a full width conservatory across the back of the house. I'd hoped to get a local builder I know to do some but he's booked solid 'til August. As they say good tradesmen are always busy.


    The conservatory will perform the function of a green house over the winter. At the moment I have a banana palm in the bathroom.8|

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  • Don't have any problem finding tradesmen around my parts, they all speak Polish, Czech or Bulgarian.:)


    Good idea about protecting the banana plant in the winter, what will you use your extension for the rest of time?


    I've not seen any magpies in my garden yet, but as soon as the baby birds arrive, so will the magpies.

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  • what will you use your extension for the rest of time?

    Sitting in the sun when it's cold outside and also a home for the many tender houseplants that came from my mothers place. At the moment they're hogging the south facing window sills. I'm hoping that in winter the extra sun coming into the house will cut the fuel bills, avoid having lights on all day and also keep it a bit warmer.

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  • Are you going for a mainly glass based conservatory Heero, or will have have a brick base to it?


    My uPVC conservatory is all glass and the problem with it is, it gets too cold in winter and too hot in summer. It probably needed a proper extension, but of course that's more dosh.

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  • Are you going for a mainly glass based conservatory Heero, or will have have a brick base to it?

    It'll have a "brick look" base that's actually insulated modules with a brick tile external finish. Probably about 24" high. Two full height glass doors at the front and a single at the garage end.


    Take a look here: https://www.diyconservatorykits.co.uk


    Lean-to style with a polycarbonate roof as we're overlooked by quite a few other houses some with loft conversions. The plastic obscures the view.


    Going to have a crack at it ourselves with the help of mates. Looking to do it for not too much dosh as the garage also needs rebuilding plus some other works.


    Main issue I can see is getting the seal and flashing to the house right. Could be that's when we get an expert in to do just that bit.

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  • I'll make a good will offering to share the re-build costs.

    Had a chat with the neighbour's OH and turns out he's a bit of a brickie so he'll fix the wall himself. :)


    He thanked me for cutting the palm back though I don't think it was the sole contributor as he's fixed the fence posts to the wall as well.:S

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  • My back lawn had its first cut yesterday. Although the gardens need a lot of work doing to them, which I maybe unable to do given my current circumstances, at least the lawns are cut now and looking better. Edged too.

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  • First of the Amyrillis buds is opening. There are another five with buds including my original of many years growth, its bulb is about 4" in diameter. The ones that came from my mothers needed to build up the bulbs after a period of some neglect but I expect some more of them to flower as well.


    First two are Red Lion but many do not have labels, I know some of them are white. Once they've come out I'll put labels in the pots for next time.

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  • My Amaryllis has come and gone Heero, and may be back again soon. It flowered when we had that mini heatwave the other week, but the hot sun soon blasted the flowers into nothingness. But there are new shoots, so I'll see if it produces another bloom soon.

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  • They usually only bloom once a year. Then they put out several leaves to help make food and build up the bulb for next year. So keep it watered and in a bright place. Full sun is OK.

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  • Ah, thanks for that, I've never had these before. I was hoping for a second flush of flowers, but that's okay, I can wait another year.:)

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  • Eventually the leaves will drop and dry out, though several of mine kept some leaves all the way through. Then don't water anymore but place the pot in a cool dry shady place and look next spring for the bulb starting to move. Then water and feed. This what I do but that was advice from from my mother. It's worth looking up the care and maintainance on the net for any better advice.


    I've seen references to chiling the dormant bulb in the fridge to stimulate spring sprouting or to control when they flower.


    Often as the bulb gets bigger they will bud off smaller ones. Once they're a reasonable size they can be separated from the parent bulb and potted up on their own. That's how I have two of my own now in addition to the twelve that came from my mother's place.


    Small bulbs generally produce a two headed bloom. As the bulb gets bigger the blooms have more separate heads usually to a maximum of four.


    After a few years the putside of the bulb can get covered in flaky dried out layers. Does no harm but looks a bit messy. Then It's time to clean off all the flakey stuff and re-pot in a larger container.

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  • Thanks Heero for that.


    I've never yet had any luck keeping indoor plants for the long term, so I'll follow your advice and check the net too and see what happens with it.

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  • Removed some of the fleece that's been protecting things. I have chives and tarragon coming up in the herb planter and a pot. Some begonias in a couple of pots that I thought had been mullered are actually sprouting from the roots so less things needed for the summer. :)


    It'll be interesting to see what else has survived seeing as we never had any severe frost down here over the winter.

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  • I've got tons of stuff in my greenhouse which is looking fine, but I'm just not sure if I'm going to get the time to do some gardening this year. We'll see how things go...

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