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mullethunter

Gardening thread

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1 hour ago, Valkyrie said:

spindle

They are my favourites - just beautiful.

Daphne I agree about Sarah Raven -  very expensive and in isolation almost certainly not worth it but her colour combinations are stunning. Especially the dark ones. I spent WAY more than I meant to on tulips / dwarf irises / hyacinths as well as daffodils and narcissi, and am now having to virtually sit on my hands to stop myself doing the same with dahlias (never grown them before because the one beastie I hate is earwigs, but after having some cut ones from my dads garden last year and seeing Sarah year I now have to have them!)

In other news, there are tiny slugs in with my sweet peas eating them as they come up!!!

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I just put the hyacinth bulbs in the ground outside when finished, Soapdragon.   All survive and by the second year are flowering away. I’ve naturalised them under a tree.  

 I’ve found pear trees are easier than apples, Valkyrie.  I planted one of each about 3 years ago and the pear has romped ahead! 

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58 minutes ago, Patricia W said:

I just put the hyacinth bulbs in the ground outside when finished, Soapdragon.   All survive and by the second year are flowering away. I’ve naturalised them under a tree.  

 I’ve found pear trees are easier than apples, Valkyrie.  I planted one of each about 3 years ago and the pear has romped ahead! 

Yes, mine are all under or around our silver birch. I usually cut the flowering stalk off once they have 'gone over' then leave them to dry out before planting as I can then plant them all at once (there are usually 12/15) and so don't risk digging up ones already in!

We had a bramley sapling, bought from Tesco of all places! It was only about £6 but, after a few years, we had to take it out as it was far too big - got really huge. Our final yield from it was just over 11 stones of fruit! Our russet (OH's favourite and planted at the same time as the bramley) never really got going but the conference pear is still going and we get a few pounds from it each autumn. 

 

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Our rescued orchids love the cold snap even if we don’t.  Got up to find this beauty this am and another budding.  It has taken a full year to get them back to health after getting them from a FB ad.  My father-in-law - a world renowned orchid expert - would be proud of me but I don’t think he knows I have them. He used to give me orchids for the window when I was first married but I killed them all so he stopped 

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I have an orchid that SMIL gave me last year - from M and S - and it had flowers for ages. However, its been flowerless now for about 7 months and no sign of buds at all. It's looking healthy with glossy green leaves and is putting out runners but they are only developing slowly. I haven't fed it since the flowers stopped but immerse it in water once a week. There is a couple in the next village to us who are orchideers and have been on trips to South America to bring them back! They had def got the orchid bug!

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Love the Orchids - mine flower every year at the same time which is now - one is open and the other has buds - I had one given to me and it flowered every year for 12 years before I lost it.   They are just so nice and so easy.   Mine gets a dribble of water once a week and never fed.   We have 2 at work and one has flowered every year for the 3 years we have had it  given by a client who lost her dog and it is nice when she comes in and its flowering once more - and the other one is a new one flowering right now.

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1 hour ago, soapdragon said:

I have an orchid that SMIL gave me last year - from M and S - and it had flowers for ages. However, its been flowerless now for about 7 months and no sign of buds at all. It's looking healthy with glossy green leaves and is putting out runners but they are only developing slowly. I haven't fed it since the flowers stopped but immerse it in water once a week. There is a couple in the next village to us who are orchideers and have been on trips to South America to bring them back! They had def got the orchid bug!

They need to kept quite dry.  We only water ours when we cant feel any moisture in the top couple of inches of bark.  They like moist air.  FIL has sprayers to keep the greenhouse damp. Try a bathroom windowsill 

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It's in the dining room very near the kitchen and does get quite steamy - perhaps I am overwatering? Not sure if I should cut off the two, now bare, stalks that the flowers were on last year just leaving the leaves. Would that make it shoot up a bit more, do you think?

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I am remodelling the back garden this year - a bit of an upheaval! The patio is more or less finished, and the main part of the garden will be a selection of beds rather than one long lawn with borders either side. The aim is to break up the view from one end to the other. Will be moving a lot of the existing plants and bring new ones in.

My front garden is more or less as I like it; a small strip of butterfly and bee-attracting plants and an abundance of blooms in the summer. It looks just right with the Victorian architecture; there are Victorian galvanised dolly tubs (old washing tubs) either side of the bay with scented climbers in them. The garden faces due south, so it takes some watering and needs drought resistant plants.

 

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Wow, DM, looks lovely! And very in keeping with your frontage, if I may be so bold!!!!!!!!!

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Hahah, of course you may! You'll have to come over when the back is finished. 

The long term plan is to lower the front wall, get some reclaimed coping stones and re-instate the railings. I do love the way that is hums with bees in the summer and smells so delicious.

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4 hours ago, soapdragon said:

It's in the dining room very near the kitchen and does get quite steamy - perhaps I am overwatering? Not sure if I should cut off the two, now bare, stalks that the flowers were on last year just leaving the leaves. Would that make it shoot up a bit more, do you think?

Don't cut off any flower stalks until they are totally brown and dry. I have made that mistake before and have lost flowers, you'll be amazed how many flower shoots pop out where you least expect them.

I only water mine when I remember and always use rainwater. I have 8 orchids altogether - the only houseplant I manage to keep alive.

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As flowers drop you can cut the stalk back to the next node on the stem you can encourage further flowers but don’t do it too much as it weakens the plant.  Cut any depleted/empty flower stems off at the bottom to encourage flowering next season.  Just asked OH as he grew up in the family orchid business but ran off to the IT circus 

Edited by ajm200

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Very pretty front garden DM :grin:

Never used to like orchids but now we have a houseful.  I did foster them out to my mum to look after but she kept them in her conservatory so they cooked.  Most are now in sick-bay!  One was dying before I took it to her, water had got into the stem and rotted, but it had very healthy roots.  It now has 2 strong little leaves that sprouted from a tiny node below the roots!  One thing that I do is to pop the pots just below the surface of the medium and soak for about 20 minutes then drain.  That helps the bark to absorb moisture.  Rule of thumb is if you can see condensation inside the pot, then it isn't necessary to water.  Mist spray aerial roots.  When new plants finish flowering check the root system - it may be a plug of moss which can be too suffocating for them. They need to have a cold spell to trigger flower spikes.

On the other hand those pretty daffodil ones like to have more moisture!  

Orchid Girl on Youtube is a mine of information.

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My OH has green fingers with orchids.  I rescue the half price ones from various places, ( or my DD’s  who has NOT inherited any green fingers) and he brings them back to life. Trouble is, they are taking over!   I noticed in the Sunday Times that Kew has a display on at the moment so might pop over for inspiration. 

Edited by Patricia W

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OH seems to be addicted to them - we have loads now!

My tomatoes are shooting up and need potting on again!  I need to prick out the peppers - only one lot didn't germinate, but I'm fine with that - they are old seed!  That leaves more space in the propagator when I get those other peppers in their own pots.  It's been so hot in the porch the past few days that I've had to turn off the heat otherwise the seedlings cook!  Also helps to harden off because I take the lid off too.  

In the greenhouse the garlic has shot up (apart from 1 - but then it has sent out a load of roots) so that has been 100% success rate - I have 40 pots and the rest of the cloves I gave to OH's cousin - she's passed it on to one of her sons.  I gather he's coming to visit soon - he has caught the self sufficiency bug big time!  He's been making cider and he does love foraging.  Years ago when we visited and went for a walk OH found a giant puffball.  Needless to say OH and his younger relly tucked into it with delight!

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I had such a massive crop of tomatoes from my 3 plants last year, that I will get those strains again.. if I can remember the names!

They were on a very sunny part of the patio and fed with chicken poo compost; had masses of ripe ones and more than enough greenies to make some green tomato chutney. I think I kept the labels somewhere.

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Having 'done' orchids, is anyone any good with cyclamen? My lovely white one by our front door tends to droop in the very cold but always recovers with the upturn in temperature. However I think the recent snow might have really done for it. I brushed the snow off and moved it closer to the house for shelter but, two days later, the flowers are still droopy and wilted! Will it survive, do you think?

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I have naturalised some under a tree but it’s taken about 15 years!  They do better outside with me than indoors.  

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1 hour ago, soapdragon said:

anyone any good with cyclamen?

I have masses and I don’t do anything. I have a few in pots around the place and tons under a hawthorn in the front garden. They flower at weird times (the under tree ones in Nov last year and a pot one now) but seem very healthy. I think if they like where they are they’ll do well. They do seem to like a bit of shade though.

Oh and they didn’t seem bothered by the snow, or the week of -6 nights that we had last winter

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I've never had success with indoor varieties, but outside they are really tough little things.  I marked a patch of them in the grass here when we moved in and what did OH do?  Moved the marker and mowed them.  They have since reappeared.  There are several patches around the garden - can't wait for them to flower.  When we moved into our old house there were cyclamen plants at the bottom of the garden - we did level the garden and I thought I'd lost the plants - but they came up and then got stronger each year.  I've brought them with me when we moved.  Actually, tell a lie - they are at my mum's with all my other plants!

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Still not recovered so, as there are clearly new buds coming through, I'm going to cut off the withered flowers and see what happens. Buds all over on my curly hazel and the cardoons are going great guns to. Otherwise just a few bulbs (aforesaid hyacinths) tentatively nosing their way out.

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16 hours ago, Valkyrie said:

what did OH do?  Moved the marker and mowed them. 

Your OH sounds like mine 😂. Mi e bought a special rose bush called Celebration the year we got married.  Never did see it flower. Knowing what he’s like i put some rigid plastic round the base of it to protect it.  He removed the plastic thinking I’d left packing on by mistake.  A few weeks later he killed it with the strummer whilst strimming a dandelion that anyone else would have uprooted 

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Oh dear lordy lordy - I wonder what goes on in their minds - certainly not the wrath of wifey that inevitably follows!:lol:

He also dug up a chicory plant that I had for the bees and it had beautiful flowers.  Come spring he dug it up because it looked like a dandelion!  He was with me when we bought it - he saw it flower (it had white and blue flowers - two in one plant!) yet he didn't ask me first.  Lost so many plants because he decided either to mow them or dig them up without checking.  He admits that he knows nothing about plants - yet will happily kill something rather than find out what it is!

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