Thursday, 15 June 2017

Raspberry Fallgold (Autumn Fruiting).

Primocane varieties produce flowers and fruit on stems grown in the same year.
Most Autumn fruiting varieties are primocanes producing fruit in their first year of growth.

The 'Fall Gold' is a self-fertilizing, double cropping raspberry bush.
The first crop arrives in August and the second in October.
After the first harvest, cut the stems back to ground level.
After winter, prune only the dry part of the stems (those which bore fruit in the autumn).
It is from these stems that the first crop will arrive the following summer.
'Fall Gold 'raspberries are firm, medium sized, scented and very tasty.
You can train your raspberry bush along a fence or against a pergola.

A rare, exciting self-fertile gold raspberry with the same delicious sweet taste of red varieties, and with the ability to produce two crops each season.
After a late summer to fall harvest, a second crop arrives the following spring on the same canes.

Each cane produces for two years, a late crop from the first year’s new green growth and an early crop the following year from the same cane, now woody.
Even if you cut ever-bearing raspberries to the ground in winter or spring, you will still get one crop of berries in late summer from new growth.
Ever-Bearing Raspberries:
TWO CROP option: For two small crops, one in July and one in September, remove the weakest, thinnest canes with dead flowering or fruiting bracts.
ONE CROP option: For one large late summer crop, remove all canes, and the crop will come entirely from the new summer’s growth and produce berries in September through October.

Another advantage of autumn-fruiting raspberries is that they don't need supporting and you just hack the lot down in February.
Autumn Bliss aren't necessarily the tastiest of raspbs, but I started picking on June 22nd this year and they'll go on until November, weather permitting.

Sunday, 11 June 2017

Natural Pesticides.

Alcohol Spray:
This spray really is great for houseplants. This especially works on mealy bugs.
1/2 cup of alcohol
2-3 tablespoons of dry laundry soap
1 quart of warm water
Mix all ingredients and spray immediately.
This solution must be made fresh for each use

Ammonia Spray:
Mix one-part household ammonia with seven parts water.

Basic Sprays:
Basic Pepper Spray - Blend 1/2 cup of hot peppers with 2 cups of water.
Strain and spray.
Basic Soap Spray - Mix 1 to 2 tablespoons liquid soap with 1 gallon of water and spray.

Bug Juice:
1/2 cup of specific species
Mash 1/2 cup of bugs then add two cups of water and strain.
Mix 1/4 cup of this "bug juice" with 2 cups of water and a few drops of soap and spray.
*Beware: Do NOT use flies, ticks, fleas, or mosquitoes in this solution!
These insects carry many communicable human diseases!

Garlic Spray:
This spray is effective against aphids, cabbage loopers, grasshoppers, June bugs, leafhoppers, mites, squash bugs, slugs and whiteflies.
3 oz. minced garlic
1 oz. mineral oil
1 tsp. fish emulsion
16 oz. water
1 Tbsp. castile soap
Combine garlic and oil.
Let soak for 24 hours; strain.
Next, mix fish emulsion with water and castile soap.
Slowly combine the garlic mixture with the fish emulsion mixture.
Keep in a sealed glass container.
This mixture will keep for several months.
To use, mix 2 Tbsp. garlic oil mixture to 1 pint water and spray.

Horseradish Repellant:
This spray is effective on aphids, blister beetles, caterpillars, Colorado beetles, whiteflies and soft-bodied insects.
3 quarts boiling water
2 cups cayenne peppers
1 inch piece horseradish root, chopped
2 cups packed scented geranium leaves, any type, optional
Combine ingredients and let set for 1 hour, cool, strain, and spray.
Note: this can be made without the scented geranium leaves if you don't have them to spare.

Lime Spray:
This spray is effective on cucumber beetles, mites and general purpose.
1 ounce of hydrated lime
32 ounces of water
1 teaspoon of castile soap
Mix hydrated lime with water.
Add soap to act as a sticking agent and insecticide.
This creates an effective spray agains many insects, especially spidermites.
Use up to twice a week.
Note: Lime can cause serious harm to plants if you use too much, so always spray a test plant first and watch it for a few days, to
check for any adverse effects on plants.

Oil Spray:
This spray works well on Aphids, mealy bugs, mites, scales, and thrips.
1 Tbsp. liquid dish soap
1 cup vegetable oil (peanut, canola, safflower, corn, soybean, or sunflower)
Mix oil and soap.
To use mixture, add 1-2 tsp. of the oil and soap mixture to one cup water, and apply to plants.

Orange Peel Spray:
This spray works well on soft bodied pests such as aphids, fungus gnats, mealy bugs and as an ant repellant.
2 cups boiling water
Peelings of on orange
A few drops castile soap
Pour boiling water over orange peels.
Allow to set for 24 hours.
Strain into a glass jar.
Add soap and spray.

Peppermint Soap Spray:
Gnats sometimes swarm on plants, usually indoor varieties.
Try this natural solution, but if the problem persists change the soil in the container.
To 1 quart of boiling water add:
1/2 Tablespoon of Dr. Bronner's Peppermint soap
Now fill a spray bottle with the mixture.
While the mixture is still hot, spray it on the plant, soil and gnats!

Red Hot Pepper Spray:
This spray works well on many different types of pests.
2 handfuls fresh red cayenne peppers
1/2 gallon water
2 Tbsp. olive oil
Dash of liquid soap
Combine ingredients, and let soak for 2 days.
Apply to plants.

Pepper-Garlic Spray:
This will repel many insects including whiteflies, apids, spidermites and caterpillars.
1 teaspoon of hot pepper or tobasco sauce
4 cloves of garlic
Quart of water
Combine one teaspoon of hot pepper or tobasco sauce, 4 cloves of garlic and a quart of water. Blend well in a blender and strain,
with cheesecloth or nylon mesh before placing in your sprayer.

Salt Spray:
This solution is used for cabbageworms and spider mites.
2 tablespoons of salt
1 gallon of water
Mix and spray.

Soap Spray:
This solution is used for aphids, mealy bugs, mites, scales, and
3 Tbsp. liquid soap
1 gallon water
Mix ingredients and spray on plants weekly.
Note: Buy a liquid soap and not a detergent. Health food stores
have liquid soaps, such as Dr. Bronner's Pure-Castile Soaps.

Spearmint-Hot Pepper-Horseradish Spray:
This works on many different kinds of bugs- too many to list!
1/2 cup of red peppers (hot)
water (read below)
1/2 cup of fresh spearmint
1/2 cup horseradish (root and leaves)
2 tablespoons of liquid detergent
1/2 cup green onion tops
Mix all of the spearmint leaves, horseradish, onion tops and peppers together with enough water to cover everything.
Strain the solution.
After mixing all of these, add a half-gallon of water and add the detergent also.
To use this solution, mix 1/2 gallon of this solution with 1/2 gallon of water.
You can use this to spray almost any plant safely.
Store this mixture for a few days in a cool environment.

Tobacco or Nicotine Spray:
This mixture is great for combating many different types of bugs; especially caterpillars, aphids, and many types of worms.
1 cup of tobacco
1 gallon of water
3 tablespoons of liquid dish soap
Mix tobacco and water in container.
Allow mixture to set for approximately 24 hours, then check the color.
It should be the color of weak tea.
If it is too light, allow to sit longer, if it is too dark, dilute with more water.
Add the liquid soap to the mixture, and spray on plants.

Warning: Don't use this solution on peppers, tomatoes, eggplants, or any other member of the solanaceous family.
Tobacco chemicals can kill these types of plants!

- DIY Natural Insecticides | Permaculture magazine:

- Get Rid of Pests with Garlic | Permaculture magazine:

How to Make Rhubarb Spray Pesticide.

How to Make Rhubarb Spray Pesticide - gardenswag:

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Saturday, 10 June 2017

Plant Doctor

- Plant Doctor: "Garlic spray "
Garlic Spray

Garlic spray is generally an effective repellent and will kill some soft-bodied insects. Spray regularly for maximum effect.

3 large cloves of crushed garlic
1 teaspoon of liquid soap
1 tablespoon of vegetable oil
1 litre of water

Combine the garlic and vegetable oil and leave overnight to soak.
Strain the mixture and add to the water and the liquid soap.
Spray regularly.
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Sunday, 4 June 2017

I’m 35 and I love gardening. Deal with it.

I’m 35 and I love gardening. Deal with it | Life and style | The Guardian:
"Gardening is many things: beautiful, meditative, healthy, exciting, rewarding and creative.
However, I often feel as if gardening is not particularly popular among my peers.
It seems to come down to one thing: age.
I’m 35 years old and I’m passionate about gardening.
Unfortunately, whenever I bring up gardening in a social situation – at the pub or in a room of colleagues, for example – there can be a few wry smiles.
I sometimes begin to feel as if I’ve admitted to some unusual obsession, like collecting my own toenail clippings or keeping a pet rock.
At Christmas, a family member slapped me on the back and informed anyone listening that I was “a sixty year old trapped in the body of a thirty-five year old”."
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Wednesday, 31 May 2017


I use plastic bottles with top and bottom cut off then the top end trimmed with pinky shears to give an edge slugs won't want to cross.
Then organic pellets inside for any of the bugger's that come up that way.
Other than that nightly patrols which isn't really practical for you.
I agree the plant sounds like creeping buttercup, I am infested with it, though slowly getting on top of it by constant pulling up and soil improvement.
Hope that helps

How To Make Potting Soil For Container Gardening.

- How To Make Potting Soil For Container Gardening (with recipe!):
Container Mix Potting Soil Ingredients
Peat moss or coco coir *
This is your base ingredient.
Peat moss and coco coir are both great for water retention, aeration, and adding nutrients to the soil as they decompose.
The only difference is that coco coir is more sustainable than peat moss, and coir a very renewable resource (it’s the bi-product of coconut processing), and peat moss is more acidic than coir.
Buy peat moss here, or coir here.
Compost or well composted manure
Container garden plants (especially vegetables, fruits and herbs) need tons of nutrients to get them through the growing season, and compost is an easy and natural way to add tons of nutrients to the soil. You can buy compost here.
Like I mentioned above, potting soil for container gardening needs to be light and porous. Perlite is a natural ingredient that prevents soil compaction, and is a key ingredient for a well draining potting mix. Buy perlite here.
Another natural ingredient, vermiculite helps the soil retain moisture longer, and also works to keep the soil light and fluffy. Buy vermiculite here.
* if you prefer, you can use a general purpose potting soil instead of peat moss or coco coir as your base ingredient. Any type of all purpose potting soil will do, but I recommend buying an organic potting mix that doesn’t contain any added chemical fertilizers, and avoiding any type of moisture control potting mix.
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Monday, 29 May 2017

Saskatoons (Juneberries)

BUY at:
Saskatoon (Juneberry)'Smoky' -£15.95
Pick: Early-season
Smoky is the sweetest-flavoured Saskatoon or Juneberry, and one of the main commercial varieties. It is very heavy-cropping.
The fruits ripen unevenly - regarded as inconvenient by commercial growers, but a useful for the gardener who wants to be able to pick fresh Saskatoons over a longer period.

Saskatoon (Juneberry) 'Northline' - £15.95
Pick: Mid-season
Uses: Eat fresh | Cookery
Northline is a popular Saskatoon or Juneberry, with a fruity sweet flavour, and one of the most productive.
The fruits ripen evenly at the same time, so the whole tree can usually be harvested in one go.

- Saskatoon bushes for sale | Buy fruit trees online | Free advice: Orange Pippin Ltd is a company based in England.
Orange Pippin Limited
33 Algarth Rise
York YO42 2HX
United Kingdom
Please note that unfortunately we cannot allow personal visitors to our nurseries.
Telephone - UK: 01759 392007 (callers from Europe please dial +44 1759 392007).

'Thiessen' saskatoon bushes - £15.95
Botanical name: Amelanchier alnifolia 'Thiessen'
Pick: Early-season
Thiessen is one of the most popular Saskatoon or Juneberry varieties, with a particularly good sharp tangy flavour.
The tree is vigorous and the berry-like fruits are amongst the largest of their kind, and ripen early in the summer.
The fruits ripen over a period.

- Saskatoons (Juneberries):
Higher in antioxidants than blueberries and known to have superior nutritional properties, being high in fibre, rich in vitamin C and E and an excellent source of protein, iron, calcium, magnesium and potassium, Saskatoons (Amelanchier alnifolia) are regarded as a superfruit.

Also known as Serviceberries, or Juneberries, the fruits look like blueberries in respect of their size and colour, but they have a flavour more like that of a blueberry crossed with a cherry, with a hint of almond. They are delicious eaten fresh, but can also be cooked, dried or frozen and are perfect for making into jams, pies, muffins, syrups, salad dressings and even wine.

Unlike the acid-loving blueberry, Saskatoons will thrive in any good, well-drained, moisture retentive soil and will tolerate alkaline conditions up to a pH of 7.5. They are bushy deciduous plants that can be grown as a large shrub or a small tree, reaching a maximum height and spread of approximately 3-4m (9-13ft), although this can be kept down if required. They can also be used to form a dense, but productive hedging.

Saskatoons prefer to be planted in a position in full sun to part shade and are very hardy, so are suitable for growing nationwide, but as they flower early it is best to avoid planting them in a frost pocket. They are also self-fertile, so do not require a pollinator, although fruiting may be improved when two or more plants are grown together. First crops are normally seen within two years of planting and once established they can produce up to 4.5kg (over 9lb) of fruit per year.

As well as their nutritional benefits, Saskatoons are also known and grown for their ornamental value and will add interest to your garden through the seasons. In spring, plants are covered in a mass of attractive white flowers shortly followed by berries that turn from pink to deep purple as they ripen during late June/July. Finally their foliage become a blaze of orange and reds as autumn approaches.

- BUY at Suffolk: APPLE SERVICEBERRY OR JUNEBERRY (Amelanchier lamarckii):
APPLE SERVICEBERRY OR JUNEBERRY (Amelanchier lamarckii) - £12.99
All orders placed between November and March will usually be despatched within 14 working days, these will be barerooted and the prices stated on the website reflect this.

BUY at: - Juneberry Amelanchier alnifolia Obelisk - £8.00
Saskatoon. One of the best of the juneberries for its larger fine edible fruits.
This variety is narrow and upright, growing to 4m (13 ft) high.
Please email to reserve for winter 2017/18 -
Agroforestry Research Trust Dartington
46 Hunters Moon,
Dartington, Totnes,
Fax: +44 (0)1803 840776
mail (at)

- Anyone for a bowl of bubbleberries? This summer's craziest fruits - Telegraph: "Bubbleberries"
Sweet and juicy with a dark purple skin, juneberries resemble large blueberries but taste like a cross between blueberries and plums. Juneberries will be available at farmers markets around the UK from late June to early July.

The scientific name for a Juneberrry is Amelanchier alnifolia. It is a deciduous shrub, native to the Canadian Prairies, where it is known as a Saskatoon Berry and has grown wild for centuries. The city of Saskatoon in Saskatchewan, Canada is named after this berry which was originally called ' misâskwatômina' by Cree peoples.

The berry looks very similar to a blueberry, however as part of the Rosaceae family, a Juneberry's closest fruit relative is the Apple. Commercial production of Juneberries began in Canada during the early 1980s and is now the second largest fruit crop from the Canadian Prairies, second only to Strawberries. Commercial production in the UK started in 2013 - becoming Pershore Juneberries.
Pershore is a market town in Worcestershire, England. -

- Juneberry, the blossom with benefits | Life and style | The Guardian:

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