Gardening - what's going on in your garden

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  • Lilymary
    Lilymary Member Posts: 1,740

    Awww, I’d love to keep chooks, aren’t they lovely 😊

  • Lilymary
    Lilymary Member Posts: 1,740
    edited 28. Mar 2021, 22:06

    My hubby and I spent yesterday afternoon putting legs on this new trough. It will hopefully be a new deluxe outdoor cat litter tray, as I find it so painful to bend down to do a poop scoop and my balance is so rubbish I risk falling over and landing in it! (our cats are contained in the back garden so they don’t “spread the love” in other people’s gardens). Next step is to line it and fill it with bags of topsoil. If they don’t use it, I’ve got a new planter! The little monkey in the pic won’t care either way, he still comes indoors to use the proper litter tray, which is much easier to clean up to be honest, I wish they’d both do that but Toby “claimed” the litter tray as his own (even when we had two) and poor Elsie has to go out in all weathers to get her fluffy little feet muddy and track it all round the house!

  • Lilymary
    Lilymary Member Posts: 1,740
    edited 2. Apr 2021, 14:34

    Our latest project, a high level litter tray! It’s getting too hard for me to do the regular poop-scoop in the flower beds, (our cats are contained in the garden by colditz- style fencing) so we’ve raised it up. Just hoping they’ll take to it - if they don’t I’ve got a nice new planter! I’ve baited it with a bit of cat poo (too much Information?) so they get the idea, but I couldn’t resist putting a few tough little plants in just round the edges.

  • stellabean
    stellabean Member Posts: 307

    This is the result of the rabbits using the snow this winter to get over the fence around my allotment and munching on the apple trees the " Fluffy Little Horrors". I am going to have to replace 2 trees.

    Meg likes to sleep among the rhubarb she finds gardening very tiring or maybe it is the walk to the site with OH.

    The bees and us are enjoying the snakehead growing at home by the water feature, it has taken us 15 years to get them to establish, the first few years they were dug up and eaten by a critter. I have bought expansive "in the green" bulbs and dry ones but the best have been cheap ones from a supermarket.

  • wazz42
    wazz42 Member Posts: 233

    It's Gardening week next week!!

    To celebrate VA have posted som tips on the website, here's the link

    I need some impetus so I'm going to aim to get into the garden on 4 occasions next week. Come along and join me - I will need some friendly support!

    xx

  • Jona
    Jona Member Posts: 406

    I’ve put in a few plants but I’m afraid the weeds are winning the war but I keep battling on I’ve noticed a lot of dandelions this year old wives tale say if lots of them in spring then it will be a bad winter has anyone ever heard of that tale?

  • Mike1
    Mike1 Member Posts: 1,992

    No I have not, so that prompted me to ask Google! Here are a few of my favourites:

    When these little yellow flowers start popping up on your front lawn, consider it to be an omen of good luck. That is because Dandelion belongs to the planet Jupiter which is the planet of wealth. If you have a lot of dandelions around your yard, it can mean that you have money coming to you.

    Dandelion generally symbolizes happiness, joy and youthful thoughts, but can also symbolize health, power, perseverance, endurance and determination.

    Dandelions in Magic and Superstition. The cheery yellow flowers and airy white puffs of dandelions seed heads have lent themselves to many uses in magic and folklore over the centuries, mostly in the areas of divination, wishes, good luck, communicating with spirits, and dreams.

  • Jona
    Jona Member Posts: 406

    Thanks Mike for those words of encouragement and positivity, really lovely thoughts, last spring I noticed my lawn was full of buttercups and it was a very mild winter I think nature is amazing I am certainly liking my dandelions now 😊

  • Mike1
    Mike1 Member Posts: 1,992

    Weeds are merely plants in the wrong place!

  • stellabean
    stellabean Member Posts: 307

    I have many "plants in the wrong place" as it gets warmer the weed seeds germinate first though the beetroot seeds I sowed last week have just begun to germinate.I have been to my allotment today and have planted some of the 200 sweetpea plants I grow hopefully the village show is going ahead this year and I am planning on entering.

    The view from my allotment it is a wonder I get anything done.

    This is how dry our ground is at present it is only 2 weeks ago it was too wet!

    I have planted these today and am now sitting with a heatpad on! I love their flowers and we have a rota of people who get bunches in the summer as the more you pick the more you get.

  • Jewels
    Jewels Member Posts: 202

    Aww I love sweet peas my dad grew them on his allotment such pretty flowers and smell gorgeous

  • Lilymary
    Lilymary Member Posts: 1,740
    edited 25. Apr 2021, 09:12

    I love sweet peas too, one of my favourite flowers, but don’t seem to,be able to grow them where I live. 200 is my idea of heaven!

    dandelions are marvellous plants. I let a good number of them stay, as they’re such a fabulous splash of,colour, and the bees love them. I use them as bee hospitals, if I find a bee that’s looking weak or drowsy, i pop them onto a dandelion and they soon perk up. I manage numbers by deadheading them so they don’t take over the entire garden, but we have fields and roundabouts up here that are a sea of golden yellow, followed by a sea of the fluffy seed heads, so pretty! luckily our council is getting better at valuing and supporting wildflowers rather than eliminating them with toxic chemicals, and our verges are a joy much of the year.

    buttercups are also a gorgeous plant, and act as nitrogen fixers, which makes the soil more fertile. If flowers like these didn’t spread so readily in the wild, we’d be happily laying fortunes for them in garden centres!

    for anyone on Facebook there’s a wonderful group called Gardening for Wildlife, which encourages wildflower lawns, (I have lots of sweet little flowers growing in mine, while it still passes as a lawn), and encouraging interest in insects, birds, small mammals, pond life etc, and creating habitats that support them. The chap who runs it is incredibly knowledgable and it’s a very friendly and encouraging group. It will change the way you garden!

  • Lilymary
    Lilymary Member Posts: 1,740

    Ps, I dislike the term ‘weed’. There’s no such thing. They’re all wild flowers. You wouldn’t see a lush wildflower meadow, or tropical rainforest, and say ‘look at all those weeds’! But as a gardener I agree every plant has its place, we just have to reconsider the value of the plants that arrive unbidden (some of which I like to call ‘pennies from heaven’)

  • stellabean
    stellabean Member Posts: 307

    This is my stream before the ferns and hostas get going the birds love bathing in the small pools and there is always a steady stream of ones bathing, peening and getting dry in the bushes at the side. There is a leak on the system but I just top up the water levels for now I don't have the energy to take the whole thing apart to find it!

  • Lilymary
    Lilymary Member Posts: 1,740

    That’s lovely! I do like a natural looking garden. We have a self made pond that was great for about 20 years but the liner’s sprung a leak somewhere so we have to top it up all through summer. Like you @stellabean , I can’t face dismantling the whole thing to reline it. It’s not big, but the centre is deep, and it will be an awful job. Oh for a level garden!

  • stellabean
    stellabean Member Posts: 307

    Mine slopes quiet a bit and it took my many years to plan my stream and when my hubby had a spinal tumor I slowly dug it a bit each day when he had to rest after his radiotherapy. My first few designs were so big I shelved them when I worked out how much soil had to be dug out. It is quite shallow with small scoops out at various levels and a small pond at the bottom where the pump is so I only had to dig one small deep area for the pump to sit in and that circulates the water that appears from a whole in the wall at the top.

  • wazz42
    wazz42 Member Posts: 233

    How lovely reading all your goings on and the info on dandelions! I agree they are a lovely flower. We have forget-me-not all over, lovely little blue flowers, and when they have finished and done their thing they are easy to pull up and look forward to next year. Interestingly in Bucks where I lived for 20 years we never saw a sign of them, here in Wales they are happy.

    I've got some of my seedlings up, these are - I've forgotten, cousin to bindweed but annual and not at all invasive big blue flowers and climbers. My plan is for them to climb the pergola we built

    xx

  • stellabean
    stellabean Member Posts: 307

    Morning glory I think. It is too cool here in the northern pennines for them. We had hail and rain today I spent this morning getting a wet bottom every time I climbed back onto the quad when clearing the horses poop in the field.I potted up about 50 tomato plants this afternoon for myself and friends it was lovely in the greenhouse.

  • frogmorton
    frogmorton Member Posts: 29,386

    Oh you lucky people! I can't do anything this year my raised beds are being put in drive re-tarmaced etc and even my greenhouse will be on the move so sadly nothing I can do at all 😕

    I shall do some planning instead and make lists of all the plants I want to have in my new garden🙂

    Ideas anyone? Country garden theme....

    Actually i am lucky really aren't I things will be so much easier soon!

  • Lilymary
    Lilymary Member Posts: 1,740

    hi @frogmorton , I try to go for plants with scent or that are insect friendly. My faves are pinks, specially Mrs Simkins, which has a double white flower and is very hardy, spreads well and the scent of sweet coves is divine, although bizarrely it always seems to climb out of the bed onto the path, so I just cut it back from time to time. Easy to take cuttings with a bit of root stock, some I just stick in the ground and let them get on with it

    I always have a few lavenders in tubs and replace them every few years when they get too woody.

    Phlox also smell gorgeous, come in lots of colours and quite tough.

    my fave annual is Nemesia vanilla, pale cream colour, the scent from just one small plant is incredible.

    Also partial to peonies, some have wonderful scent as well as ‘look at me!’ flowers

    for late colour you can’t beat rudbekia, fabulous splash of colour in late summer and the insects love them.

    ice plants (sedum) are also great for late colour and will be covered in bees and butterflies

    and then there’s roses, I keep clearing other plants out so I can squeeze in just one more........

  • crinkly
    crinkly Member Posts: 146

    I'm green with envy!! Our planned house move of last year collapsed when a buyer pulled out of the chain so we lost the house with big garden that we intended to buy back then. Since November we've been in rented accommodation with a tiny back yard crammed with pots of the plants we brought with us and trying to apply a large dose of patience to the process.

    At long last we are getting close to completion, looking forward to moving into a Swedish-designed eco-house with small garden, so limited space for veggies but opportunities to try a different sort of gardening - 'greening' exterior walls among other things. We expect to move into this new abode in June - too late to start off plants for this year but in time to plan ahead for the longer term so I'm noting all the posts here for good ideas. Keep them coming and I may have miracles to report in 2022 courtesy of this forum! Maybe you should register for royalties before I copy your brainwaves. 🌼

  • stellabean
    stellabean Member Posts: 307

    We have some very shady areas in our garden and I grow hostas some the mini ones in pots and the larger ones in the borders, every few years I have to split the biggest clumps but that means plants for free and to give away. I have a waiting list for this years split plants. I like hellebours as they will self seed and you get free plants and as they enjoy crossing with each other new colours too, their flowers are so beautiful and they are out before anything else.

    Crinkly I buy small cheap climbing plants from the supermarkets and grow them on in a pot to plant out at a later date they are also a good source of bulbs in the autumn. You can plant some bulbs and look forward to flowers in the spring. There are winter pansies, violas and primroses that can be planted in autumn and will give colour in the winter.

  • Mike1
    Mike1 Member Posts: 1,992

    I am plagued with slugs and snails in my garden, as a result I cannot grow vegetables or many flowers and I will not use slug pellets because of my cat and other wildlife and although I have tried other methods to control them I have found them to be ineffective. The only things I grow are "woody" plants and those that are highly scented as for some reason the pests do not like them.

  • Lilymary
    Lilymary Member Posts: 1,740

    I’m the same @Mike1 , I just avoid planting anything the slugs like to eat. (I do have a few hostas, but don’t mind if they’re not perfect). This helps to control slug and snail populations naturally, and the few that remain I see as little garbage disposal men, clearing up dropped flower heads etc. Everything has a role to play, even slugs

  • stellabean
    stellabean Member Posts: 307

    I hate Jackdaws they have been raiding the songbird nests in our and the neighbouring gardens, I can't stand the alarm calls from the parents as the black sods steal their eggs or the babies. We have 2 pairs pf blackbirds both are on their 3 attempt at having young this year, and the thrushes are constantly chasing the jackdaws away from their nests. I know it is just nature but they are relentless last year we only had one brood that was raised to fledgling stage then the parents gave up and I fed the young until they were independent. Well one is still demanding mealworms but she is the one with a brood at the moment.