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The gardening thread

Discussion in 'suburban75' started by ringo, Feb 11, 2014.

  1. wayward bob

    wayward bob i ate all your bees

    urban tree swap :thumbs:

    all of a sudden i realise how much i don't know about plants and how they work :facepalm: i love it when that happens :D
     
  2. wayward bob

    wayward bob i ate all your bees

    growing from seed i'm scared of cos i very rarely get it right, if it germinates it gets eaten or dies, i'm generally safer with bigger things :D
     
  3. StoneRoad

    StoneRoad RIP Greebo being kinder heckling from the back!

    Took a chance with the weather vs my neuralgia and have been out in the garden today.
    The "thrashing" I gave a lot of the vegetation last year seems to have made an impression - a bit early for the main trees / bushes but quite a lot of snowdrops visible. Something has had a go at the daffodils over the past three / four years, so a bit of a waiting game, to see if anything better happens this year.
    I've re-gained quite an area of grass (not really lawn standard, yet) and had started to rebuild the few flowerbeds - hopefully no rabbits this year - but more to do.
    I've done a bit more tree & bush pruning and (with help) cleared one of the walkways. Some more tree thinning due next winter, as I don't have time at present.
    Butterflies were a bit disappointing last year and I need to replace a few bird boxes before the end of the month ...
     
  4. campanula

    campanula plant a seed

    Yes, me too...and now you have got me thinking about bonsai...and how the 'rules' are different to growing full sized specimen trees. Normally, we generally wouldn't cut the main trunk of something like a maple or a hornbeam because this is the dominant growth point (for height) and will be in balance with developing sideshoots. There are numerous exceptions - training fruit trees or wanting a multi-trunked specimen (common with birch and hazel...and, of course, bonsai. So please disregard my earlier statement about nursery whips because I was basically chatting shit. Pruning, especially cutting back the leader (because apical dominance) is right at the heart of bonsai.
    So yeah, it is both humbling and thrilling to see things through entirely new eyes...so thank you for pointing me in a new and unexpected direction. Cheers.
     
    Last edited: Feb 2, 2018
  5. StoneRoad

    StoneRoad RIP Greebo being kinder heckling from the back!

    Umm. I wonder if I could bonsai some of the silver birch and ash that seem to be taking over around here ?
    I did have a bonsai maple but it was killed by neglect (I was working away, and the house-sitter mis-understood their instructions - I hope that it wasn't deliberate)
     
  6. campanula

    campanula plant a seed

    StoneRoad, one of the (few) factoids which I remember from my hort. classes is a single blade of newly germinated grass plant will spread to cover 18 inches on average. Obviously, a little fescue will only stretch to 9inches while couch will cover a football field in a week. I see the transformation in the wood - I never move fallen leaves so the grass will be sparse and patchy as fuck...but as soon as it really gets going (about 10C or so), it is lush and thick in no time.
     
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  7. StoneRoad

    StoneRoad RIP Greebo being kinder heckling from the back!

    I've got a few clumps of Yorkshire Fog in with the grass - only a relatively few years ago some of the now "lawn" was coarse sheep grazing ... and until last summer it was badly neglected due to other commitments (inc work and health problems ).
    It is still a work in progress, but it will be gradually improving this year.
     
  8. campanula

    campanula plant a seed

    [QUOTE="StoneRoad, post: 15425979, member: 48530" gradually improving this year.[/QUOTE]

    Could be the perpetually optimistic gardener's motto.
     
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  9. StoneRoad

    StoneRoad RIP Greebo being kinder heckling from the back!

    Could be the perpetually optimistic gardener's motto.[/QUOTE]

    I certainly hope so, because I'm basing my "plans" on what happened last year - at least in terms of the grass partially re-colonising the cleared areas, some of which was quite late in the year. The grass can have free access to the larger area this year, and should carry on spreading (maybe with a bit of help from some extra seed).
     
  10. wayward bob

    wayward bob i ate all your bees

    dear gardening thread

    my little ferns have just arrived, potted. should i bung them straight out in the cold or transition them somehow? anyone know what growing conditions they'll have come from? (nursery)
     
  11. wayward bob

    wayward bob i ate all your bees

  12. campanula

    campanula plant a seed

    Hi Wayward, your ferns have probably been grown in a sheltered shade polytunnel so a little bit of 'hardening off' will do no harm. Just pop them outside during daylight and bring them in at night for a week or so. Don't repot for a few weeks though.

    Have been buying seeds for dye plants. I had been so responsible this year...but am now heading out of control (again). Madder currently sitting in hot water while the order is in for indigo (2 types), reseda luteola, coreopsis tinctoria (in fact, anything with tinctoria in the binomial)...all avocado skins will be saved and frozen and there will be no composting of onion skins, red cabbage and beetroot.
     
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  13. campanula

    campanula plant a seed

    Blimey - this dyeing lark just sounds better and better, the more I think about it. I can use the exact same pots and pans I have been using while trapped in a 2 decade fantasy of 'the good life'. No more toiling and moiling over boiling jam, ketchup, cordials (not to mention the days and weeks spent picking the stuff). No need for continual faffing over 60 tomato plants (I am already grubbing out the blackcurrants for my new greenhouse). I can fully retreat from horticultural and culinary duty and responsibility and finally immerse myself into witchy mad old bat mode. I can already cackle and have the requisite terrifying teeth. Knit a pointy hat perhaps.

    Oh yes, I also have a cloak and a fondness for the Third Ear Band.
     
    wayward bob, Artaxerxes and Leafster like this.
  14. ringo

    ringo Macaroni cheese controller

    Only got round to staking it yesterday, so it's had two weeks of waving about in the cold wind with some exposed roots. Dunno if it'll re-root now or not.
     
  15. gentlegreen

    gentlegreen Sproutarian.

    At least two weeks of this "winter" nonsense apparently. :(

    My leaky downstairs back room where I'm overwintering my spider plants and where I will start my seedlings later on, went down to below 7 degrees last night - which is regarded as the cut-off point for sub-tropical plant survival in a conservatory.

    Touch wood the nasturtium sprawling across the bathroom window will make it through - I plonked it in water as "cut flowers" and it rooted, so I hope to find out how "annual" nasturtiums really are - whereas all the ones that accidentally ended up in the front garden were rather dull yellow, these are two shades of ochre.
     
  16. campanula

    campanula plant a seed

    Botanically speaking, tropolaeum majus is a perennial...like many of our so-called half hardy annuals (lobelia, nicotiana, pelargonium, even petunia, they are only grown as annuals here because we don't bother to overwinter them.
    You could take cuttings, if you are really keen on the colour of yours - soft tips will root (as you noted) very easily indeed.
    Biennial is another category which is often confusing (to me) - many actually being short-lived perennials...such as wallflowers. I am often unclear what I am looking at - is this the original plant which has overwintered...or is it an entirely new seedling? Digitalis will often act as a perennial for me (the original spike, despite looking tatty overwinter, does not die off or go into dormancy, but hangs around looking grim all winter, only to shoot new leaves from the crown the following spring.Forget-me-nots (myosotis sylvatica) are seemingly immortal but I suspect I am looking at seedlings which germinated in autumn while the original plant died after setting seed. True biennials, such as Canterbury Bells (campanula medium) and also chimney bellflower (c.pyramidalis) do that biennial thing of growing a foliage rosette the first year, then flowering and dying the following summer.
    Then there are the true monocarpic ones (dying after setting seed (geranium maderense, cardiocrinum giganteum)...and those which die unless disbudded during the first flowering (some meconopsis sp. and sometimes campanula 'Kent Belle') but will, thereafter, act as a perennial.
     
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  17. gentlegreen

    gentlegreen Sproutarian.

    My white digitalis in a bucket looks like it's coming up for a third year at least - albeit I think with a shorter flower spike - and luckily it managed to self seed into another bucket so I have two this year to compare. :)
    And I felt sure at the time that last year's disappointingly un-smelly wallflowers I bought in Aldi had skipped a year somehow - they were definitely rather straggly :hmm:
    And some of the wallflowers they planted at work this year looked a bit odd ...

    oldwallflowers.jpg
     
  18. ringo

    ringo Macaroni cheese controller

    Somebody dumped this neglected plant in the street near my office. I've rescued it, given it a soak and put it on the bright windowsill to give it a second chance.

    Any ideas what it is? Outdoor or indoor? Has a bit of an Azalea look to it from the branch structure but leaf not the same as those I have.

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Feb 8, 2018
  19. Leafster

    Leafster Nurturing green fingers

    It looks like an Azalea to me. One of those you buy in a pot at Christmas time. If it is, it's more or less tender in the UK but should be put outside when it's warmer.
     
  20. ringo

    ringo Macaroni cheese controller

    I leave mine outside all year. I'll give this one some tlc and then take it home to join the others in my Japanese Garden. Like a little lost orphan finding it's family again. Err, or something :D:D
     
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  21. Leafster

    Leafster Nurturing green fingers

    There are definitely hardy azaleas but some are definitely "indoor" plants.

    I suspect the one you've pictured is one of these: Azaleas indoors/RHS Gardening
     
  22. ringo

    ringo Macaroni cheese controller

    I didn't know there were indoor Azaleas, it can stay in my office then :thumbs:
     
  23. wayward bob

    wayward bob i ate all your bees

    :D:cool:
     
  24. wayward bob

    wayward bob i ate all your bees

    i've got loads going on atm. trees have arrived and are awaiting planting, have flat pack assembly to do putting together a new planter for the front and a zinc-top table for the back. i'm getting to grips with caterpillars and aphids on the orange tree and olive spot.

    happy days :)
     
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  25. wayward bob

    wayward bob i ate all your bees

    it might still surprise you - mine lasted years in a chimney pot and survived being transplanted into a bin (upgrade!) despite the fact that it didn't really fit and the rootball sticks out the top a bit. if i haven't managed to kill it there's still hope :oops::D
     
    ringo likes this.
  26. campanula

    campanula plant a seed

    Does not look like any digitalis I have come across. OTOH, nicotiana?
     
  27. gentlegreen

    gentlegreen Sproutarian.

    That's one of the weird wallflowers at work - as if it's being used for the second time ...
     
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  28. ringo

    ringo Macaroni cheese controller

    I reckon it'll survive. It's at a natty new jaunty angle now too 'cos I was being 'creative' :D
     
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  29. campanula

    campanula plant a seed

    They are astonishingly tough New Zealand natives...and really have to lose everything, from all the top growth down to roots to actually kill them off. Having said that, 2011 was a catastrophe for cordylines - Torquay, where they grow huge, was especially affected after 2 killer winters on the trot. Along with draceanas, I have managed to keep one alive (I am a houseplant murderess) so yours won't bat an eyelid, Ringo, jaunty angle notwithstanding
     
    ringo likes this.
  30. campanula

    campanula plant a seed

    Ah yes, I see - especially that gnarly woody stem. Scale can be difficult to see on a photo (in my defence as a rubbish identifier). I have tough old wallflowers which are ancient, at the allotment...and you can give them a vicious pruning, to encourage nice new growth (unlike lavender which will not resprout from old wood). Mine have been overgrown by a rampant cistus...so are not even getting much sun, but back they come, year on year...even more reliable than Bowles Mauve and other 'perennial' wallflowers.
     
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