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Posts Tagged ‘garden’

Garden Birds

Thursday, April 23rd, 2009

I also have an interest in birds, I wouldn’t call myself a twitcher or a birder, maybe somewhere in between! There’s one British bird which I would love to see visit my garden, it’s the Goldfinch. Nyjer (thistle) seed is the preferred food of goldfinches, and you need a special food dispencer and Nyjer (thistle) seeds of course. I have read that unless Goldfinches visit your garden already don’t bother! I have seen flocks of goldfinches (6-8 birds) in the area, and last season, I saw one in the garden (not feeding, just perching for a few minutes). I was going to ask a nearby neighbour who feeds the birds, did they have any goldfinches visit their garden before I invest in Nyjer (thistle) seeds and feeder.Well yesterday, at the local garden centre, I took the plunge and purchased Nyjer (thistle) seeds and feeder. Here it is:-

and I’d like to report, that earlier today, I though I saw, two Goldfinches feeding at the end of the garden, but I couldn’t confirm because I didn’t have me bins on me. I just checked about 30 minutes ago, and I spotted FOUR GOLDFINCHES FEEDING ON THE NYJER SEED!

Nyjer (thistle) seed dispencer for Goldfinches.

Nyjer (thistle) seed dispencer for Goldfinches.


Let’s just say, I’m a little excited!! Just goes to prove the books and experts are wrong!!!

Digital SLR on Tripod, 300mm Zoom Lens attached, waiting for them to return, watch this space for photos…..

(if Goldfinches currently visit your garden you are very lucky!)

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Way back Then :- How Does Your Garden Grow?

Monday, April 20th, 2009

When the term blog wasn’t invented, I was “blogging” of sorts here with How Does Your Garden Grow? It was a few years ago, when a friend told me he was captivated by my blog, that he started to grow his own vegetables. (Thanks David!) I said “what blog?”, that’s not a blog, well I suppose it was!!!! If you not seen it, it’s still here How Does Your Garden Grow? (please be patient, it’s not bandwidth friendly and badly coded!)

So I’ve really been blooging of sorts since 2003! Which reminds me to why I posting…..

In Memory of Esme & Charlie, this is a piece of video footage I found on a DV tape, down the back of my desk. Where better to archive it, but on youtube!

It was shot in June 2003, what we didn’t know at the time this video was taken was that Charlie would fall seriously ill and die in September of that very same year. Esme died 3 years later in July 2006 of aspirated pneumonia. Esme is the soggy cat, that has just fallen in the pond, and Charlie is the white cat in the background that comes into frame.

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These times are changing…

Friday, April 3rd, 2009

These times are changing it’s been five years, I’ve been blogging, and the software I’ve been using has run it’s course and it’s time to upgrade to something more current. Over the next coming months, I will try and merge aquablog and our house blogs into one blog, with different categories, rather than two seperate blogs which is how they exist at present. This will allow me to blog in more specific categories, fish house, garden DIY, car, computers, internet etc, you get the general idea. So you can select a category (section) to read, rather than ready all the rubbish I blog about.  The FishHouse Blog! and Our House blogs haven’t moved and are still there. Just click the links to access them. Eventually they will be merged into categorys (sections) here.

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Hawthorn hedging

Thursday, March 26th, 2009

I’ll just tell it how it is, after the local council sprayed around the village notice board, the exact same width of hedge behind the notice board died!

After some discussions, ERYC sent me some free plants. Many Thanks to ERYC.

So, I decided to also order 50 x 110-125cm Hawthorn bareroot hedging plants, canes and spirals to patch the holes that have appeared in our old hedge that surrounds the front garden. They were ordered from Scot Plant Direct in Scotland, as they were very competitively priced, arrived the next day in great condition, and been living in moist compost since. But I must plant them out soon.

Hawthorn No.1
110-125cm Hawthorn bareroot hedging plants

Hawthorn No.2 from ERYC
Hawthorn bareroot hedging plants from ERYC

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Pyrex Cloche or Bell Jar?

Monday, March 23rd, 2009

I use them as garden cloches to protect the plants from frost, the wind and rain, I cannot remember how they came into my possession, but I’ve had them roughly 10 years now, they’ve been stuck behind the greenhouse for the last 2-3 years, but I want a head start on my outdoor tomatoes this year, so I’ve cleaned them ready for use to protect my tomato plants from the cold winds and frost.

If you know what they are, answers on a postcard to …

Pyrex Cloche No.1
Pictured from the top, it has a metal pipe screwed into the top, sealed with a rubber seal.

Pyrex Cloche No.2
The makers stamp can be clearly seen. Manufactured by Pyrex, Made in England

Pyrex Cloche No.3
I have two of these glass items, and as you can see, they’ve had special metal frames that carry them. They are open at the bottom, and the glass fits the frame exactly.

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What’s in the Greenhouse

Sunday, March 22nd, 2009

Well it’s not really a greenhouse or is it, it’s a plastic 6ftx4ft greenhouse, I purchased it from Littlewoods when they closed down for very little money, but the plastic cover only lasted one season and I had to renew it, special order from Gardman in Lincs, just down the road! They don’t really do Mail Order, but I couldn’t get a replacement cover anywhere, I don’t think my greenhouse was originally a Gardman, but the cover fits. I don’t think any of the Gardman garden products are made in the UK, I think they are all made in China, but could be proved wrong!

Anyway back to what’s growing in the greenhouse, the porch is full of Tomato seedlings and chitting potatoes, and the greenhouse is full of the following:-

  • Sweat Peas Lathyrus odoratus
    Sweet Pea Lathyrus odoratus King Size Navy Blue
  • King Size Navy Blue
    Sweet Pea Lathyrus odoratus Midnight.
  • Midnight
    Sweet Pea Lathyrus odoratus Blue Velvet
  • Blue Velvet
    Sweet Pea Lathyrus odoratus Mutacana
  • Mutacana
    Sweet Pea Lathyrus odoratus Blue Ripple
  • Blue Ripple
  • Nasturtium majus
    Nasturtium Majus Black Velvet
  • Black Velvet
    Nasturtium Majus MilkMaid
  • Milkmaid

I’ve gone for a blue and purple theme this year with the sweat peas, and black and white again with the Nasturtium, although last year some of the Milkmaid turned out to be red and orange! Here’s a picture, I took to show Thompson & Morgan. Their excellent customer service department, sent me four packs of seeds free of charge for the inconvenience. Thank You!

Nasturtium Majus
Nasturtium majus MilkMaid “Red”

So until these get planted the green house is full to the brim.

Sweet Peas in Greenhouse No.1
Sweat Peas in Green House No.1

Sweet Peas in Greenhouse No.2
Sweat Peas in Green House No.2

Sweet Peas in Greenhouse No.3
Sweat Peas in Green House No.3

Sweet Peas in Greenhouse No.4
Sweat Peas in Green House No.4

Sweet Peas in Greenhouse No.5
Sweat Peas in Green House No.5

One day I’d love a real greenhouse or poly tunnel!!!

I always purchase my flower and vegetable seeds from Thompson & Morgan. Great value, fantastic stock, and let us not forget fabulous customer service.

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Springtime approaches

Tuesday, March 17th, 2009

I’ve been meaning to get a photo of these flowers for the last couple of years, we never planted them, and they only appeared when we removed a circle of grass around two trees in the garden, this is the blue/purple variety, the other variety we have is a yellow one. So they must have been dormant for many years!

I believe them to be a cultivars of Anemone nemorosa

Anemone nemorosa
Anemone nemorosa

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Angus Says Hello!

Monday, June 30th, 2008

Angus says Hello!

Whilst out in the garden today, Angus Says Hello!

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Andy’s Day Off!

Monday, June 30th, 2008

YEDL our electrical supplier were fiddling with the electrical supply again today! So I stayed at home to “baby-sit” the fish house, whilst it was on generator power from 8am this morning, supply was back on at 2.30pm.

So I decided to cut our massive hedge, we have a number of hedges that surround the front garden, there are two hedges that border the driveway, a typical hedge-row of blackthorn, hawthorn, bramble etc and a privet hedge, if only I knew someone with stick-insects they would have food for a year! Total length of hedge which needs cutting is approx 300ft, and the driveway has been rapidly disappearing, with the warm/wet weather. Another typical hedge-row of blackthorn, hawthorn, bramble etc surrounds the front garden, this has grown over 10ft in height!

My brother an RHS Qualified Garden Landscaper at Groundscaper recommended I purchase a Stihl HS45 Petrol Edger (West Country slang for Hedge Trimmer!).

Although expensive, it cuts through my hedges like a knife through butter. You have to be a bit careful with the privet hedge, because before you know, you’ve cut two foot off without noticing! Although it weighs approx 4.9kg with fuel, it’s Anti-vibration system and ergonomics make it easier to cut with for long periods of time.

Before Hedge was Cut Pic 1
A view down the drive from house, before privet-hedge was cut

Before Hedge was Cut Pic 2
A view up the drive towards house, before privet-hedge was cut. The hedgerow on the rights has already been cut.

Before Hedge was Cut Pic 3
A view up the drive towards house, before privet-hedge was cut.

Before Hedge was Cut Pic 4
Close-up of privet-hedge before it was cut

After Hedge was Cut Pic 1
Privet-hedge after the hedge was cut taken from the house looking down the drive. Another tip from my brother an RHS Qualified Garden Landscaper at Groundscaper, before cutting, lay a tarpuline under the hedge to collect, hedge trimmings, move along the hedge as you cut, quick and easy to clear-up afterwards!

After Hedge was Cut Pic 2
Privet-hedge after the hedge was cut taken from the house lookign down the drive. In the distance is the green reycycle bin to take to the tip, with hedge cuttings. It’s not difficult cutting hedges, it’s all the clippings you need to tidy up afterwards.

After Hedge was Cut Pic 3
Privet-hedge after the hedge was cut taken from the house looking down the drive.

After Hedge was Cut Pic 4
Privet-hedge after the hedge was cut taken towards the house looking down the drive.

After Hedge was Cut Pic 5
Close-up of the privet-hedge after cutting.

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What’s Growing!!!

Saturday, June 21st, 2008

Earlier in the year I planted tomatoe seeds, first early potatoes, garlic was planted last year in September. Here are some pictures of the results.

I’m trying an experiment, of growing six varities of tomatoes, six in the green house in growbags using growpots, six outside using growbags and growpots, and six plants planted in 10L pots. This year I’m using double-height Miracle-Gro Organic growbags, instead of purchasing two normal size/width growbags.

Tomatoes Outside in 10L pots
tomatoes plants in 10l pots, outside in the garden.

Tomatoes Outside in growbags and growpots
six tomatoes plants outside using growbags and growpots

Tomatoes Inside in growbags and growpots
six tomatoes plants inside the greenhouse using growbags and growpots

Tomatoes Inside  in 10L pots
tomatoes plants in 10l pots, inside the greenhouse.

Potatoes and Blue Berry bushes
first early potatoes planted in Humax organic potatoe bags by Medwyn Williams, Medwyn was the father of one of the boys that went to my school, and lived a couple of minutes from where I lived! I’ve recently noticed there is an Organic Humax range for potaotes, strawberrys, chillis, tomatoes, cucumbers, squashes etc Something to try next year. In the background you can see my six blueberry bushes.

Blueberrys ripening on the bush
Blueberrys ripening…not long now until eating, when they turn blue/purple! Must keep the water on!

Garlic - almost ready for pulling
Almost time to pull the garlic for eating, umm wet garlic!

Blue Bizzy Lizzy Plants and Begonias
Not for eating, but included for interest, the first Busy Lizzie ‘Blue Sky’ plants [RARE] and a few Begonia.

P.S. The chilli seeds/plants were a disaster! I decided to use my fish house and heated propagators to germinate them, the problem was, they spouted in record time, but overheated in the propagators and all died! So next year I need to find a cooler place or not use the heated propagators, or turn off, after they’ve germinated!

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