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reddivine
15-07-14, 16:45
Got to admit, while not being being a Die hard fan of em, i have been watching Love your garden. The things Mr T does do give me idea and hope! that a patch of not very inspiring stuff can be glammed up. Mind you £16,000 for a hot tub??!!! bugger that I'll spend it on raised beds and ramps!

catlover
16-07-14, 06:52
I love gardening programmes. I struggle with the practical side of gardening and I'm a bit of a newbie to it all anyway so learn loads and indulge in a spot of fantasy gardening (got the gardening bug a couple of years ago). I do often watch Love your garden but am not a fan of the Titch as I find him very annoying so do tend to avoid programmes with him. I love Gardeners world on a Friday evening but that has a lot to do with the lovely Monty (he can dig my beds any day ;) ) and I love Beechgrove garden.

I've never got hot tubs tbh. I mean, they're not exactly swimming pools are they? why would anyone want to sit in a glorified bath in their garden?!

Lighttouch
16-07-14, 10:13
I've not got green fingers but I do like trees!

One of my favourite is the Japanese Maple as the flora changes colour through the season.

I do like designing garden layouts. Although I've got lots of low maintenance shrubs I have a big hedge to two sides. These days I can't cut it. I employ a gardener to visit every two weeks to cut the grass and weed as my balance is rubbish these days

I based my back patio area on an oval lawn, paving bricks, trellis work and raised hidden water features. I draughted the plan out in detail on graph paper and got a landscape garden to put it into action.

However, I very rarely sit out on the grass which is a waste.

This afternoon I'm forfeiting a lunch date with my Malaysian girlfriend as my mum surprised me by asking directions to a private house garden viewing. She was going to drive through unknown territory without a map or Sat Nav and return in the rush hour - a recipe for disaster which would end with me being dragged in to help. So I'm chauffeuring her there, and returning to pick her up later. http://www.ngs.org.uk/gardens/find-a-garden/garden.aspx?id=30119

catlover
16-07-14, 16:44
If I had a garden I don't think I'd have any grass. Maybe a wildflower meadow. I would definitely not go for a central lawn surrounded by borders. So boring and I don't want to sit and look at the plants in the distance I want to be sat in the middle of the plants. I could sit for hours just watching bees flit from flower to flower. I'd go for lots of plants to attract wildlife and maybe a pond.... oh it's nice fantasizing! I'll have to make do with my containers. I think my tomatoes are finally starting to ripen - they seem to have been green for ages with nothing happening.

Lighttouch - I love trees. I am not at all knowledgeable but just love the majesty of a large tree, the texture of the tree trunk, the different shades of green of leaves (who knew there were so many shades of green? 50 shades of green!), the falling of leaves in autumn etc. I could never live above the tree line or somewhere without trees. I went to Tiree once in the Hebrides and whilst it was lovely (but cold) there wasn't a single tree as it is above the tree line. I couldn't live there. Just call me a tree hugger :)

reddivine
17-07-14, 08:42
Watching these programmes has made me realise in future the design will have to change drastically for me. Less grass, more hard landscaping (wheelchair does not do grass). Raised beds. Growing veg. (B'friend needs organic food - cheaper to grow yr own.)
Perennials. They come back (we like somat for nothing). As the lady on LYG said.....these plants have to work for their inclusion!
Thankfully the boyfriend is pretty knowledgable on this stuff

Lighttouch
17-07-14, 09:05
Cat lover, I wonder how I knew that you'd be into 50 shades of green!

My favourite types of plants are variegated - I have a lovely Virginia creeper that changes to bright red in Autumn. I have a fire thorn bush that produces bright red berries in winter. Loads of low-maintenance shrubs and conifer trees, plum, apple trees etc.

Reddivine - having raised beds for easy maintenance is a great idea. A cheap way of achieving that is by using hardwood railway sleepers to form walls - looks rural too. http://railwaysleepersuk.co.uk

My dad passed away back in March and my mum took his ashes to Wythenshawe Park and scattered them in three areas that have sentimental value. Yesterday she told me that she's buying a sappling Oak tree that the Council will plant in the park later this month. She prefers celebrating my dad's passing with giving life rather than a headstone. She wants me to plant another Oak tree in the same area when she passes on - it makes me feel sad thinking about it but who said romance is dead.

Catlover - Another wonderful National Trust place that has an abundance of trees is Bodnant Gardens in North Wales (a few miles from Llandudno). They have flowing water. Enormous Redwood trees that must be at least 100 years old. http://www.nationaltrust.org.uk/bodnant-garden/

(http://www.nationaltrust.org.uk/bodnant-garden/)

deebee
17-07-14, 11:43
what a lovely idea (the sapling oak) I have visions now of a great oak tree in future years
when an uncle of mine passed, I was very surprised to get a cheque and letter from his wife 3 months after saying that Uncle Phil wants you to have this and wants you to buy something you need for the house
I didnt need anything for the house,but I did have a stack of bills to pay and had been worrying,but felt guilty using it all without buying something to remember him by
Any way, there was a scruffy bit by my front door,not really a garden, just a strip that passing cats,foxes kept messing,so I bought some purple slate, a nice big pot and a lavender
We always say in the evening, just gonna go water Uncle Phils lavender
I think he would be pleased as he was a very keen gardener

Sociopath
17-07-14, 14:36
Got to admit, while not being being a Die hard fan of em, i have been watching Love your garden. The things Mr T does do give me idea and hope! that a patch of not very inspiring stuff can be glammed up. Mind you £16,000 for a hot tub??!!! bugger that I'll spend it on raised beds and ramps!

I am currentlty converting my backyard into a urban farm.

I will have 3 types of livestock: Chickens, Ghost Carp & Rabbits. I plan on breeding them as Pets. These animals will serve a purpose of creating enough manure to feed my plants.

I currently have 2 green houses and I am in the process of making channels of raised beds between them which can have cold frames to put over during winter time.

Inside the green houses there will be a aquaponics set up. This is a method of using fish & hydroponics to create a good growing enviroment for plants. I will be able to produce cabbages, lettuces and other forms of salad in 30 days.

I plan on selling my produce to the local community at rock bottom prices. basically non-profit. It will be sort of a way to show people that I recognize that working families also have it tough and even though I'm mentally insane I can still do something for the community.

Lighttouch
17-07-14, 15:50
Hi Sociapath sounds a great idea. Just a point - even not-for-profit organisations are allowed to make a profit. The difference being that the profits are ploughed back into the business which in turn improves the customer service.

With the little extra you make you can buy more fish etc which will increase your productivity and sere more people.

You'll have to post a photo or two - sounds an interesting business idea.

reddivine
17-07-14, 16:11
10241025

My mornings work. BEFORE it got too hot. Lavender in the pot and the other container (old supermarket crate.) has carex, perstemons and impatiens. I went to B&Q where they are reducing stuff. Perennials and hardy stock (we like easy to manage)

Lighttouch
17-07-14, 16:19
Reddivine darling - you've done it - well done for posting pictures. Looks very nice - I can see you like a bargain.

Just got my RHS Tatton Park Flower Show programme today. It's an enormous event - but I'm looking forward to it a week on Sunday. I'm taking at least my niece for her birthday present.

catlover
17-07-14, 16:46
Got my programme today too :) I am going on Thursday. Hope the weather is good. It was very hot last year on the day I went. My lunch was a glass of champagne and a bar of Hotel Chocolat 100% cocoa solids Peruvian chocolate. Flowers, plants, sunshine, champagne and fine chocolate - bliss!

Lighttouch
17-07-14, 22:23
So catlover, I see by your aviator you like the big cats too. The Cheetah is one of my favourite big cats. I believe it can run short distances up to 70mph to catch its prey. The reason that it can travel so fast is due to its flexible spine which can bend in both directions. This gives it an advantage as its stride can be lengthened meaning it uses less energy to move wider distances between strides.

The tail is used as a counter weight to help balance when making acute cornering to chase the nimble fleet footed gazelles and alike.

It also has very striking facial looks in my opinion.

I was very interested in wildlife as a boy and subscribed to weekly magazines that went on for years produced by the World Wildlife Fund.

Sorry detracting from the forum thread - normal viewing will now resume.

So Thursday is your day. Not long to go. Bubbly, chocs and sunshine with a few flowers thrown in for good measure. What yer like! Enjoy.

catlover
18-07-14, 18:17
oh yes - got to love Cheetahs. They are very beautiful and elegant animals. They have great lung capacity too and a large rib cage so that they don't run out of breath.

The Cheetah in my avatar btw is K.T. (Kinky Tail) - female cheetah at Chester zoo.

reddivine
19-07-14, 08:52
So Lighttouch is into 50 shades of green? Nowt to do with gardening apparently....
http://www.amazon.co.uk/Confessions-Operating-Room-Nurse-Shades-ebook/dp/B00DMND6LM/ref=sr_1_3?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1405759741&sr=1-3&

Lighttouch
19-07-14, 11:15
Reddivine you'll have to get gowned up before you pull any of my lillies!

Well after a hot and humid night - 68F at midnight the thunder came at 4ish for 10 minutes. Very spectacular and within minutes cleared the sticky air. It's been merrily bouncing down here for the last few hours but I'm due to go triking at one o'clock come what may. I will be wearing a green gown - sorry cape and enjoy the trickle of water down my face - rainwater.

And back on the gardening theme - the garden could do with a good soak.

TheFlyingKidney
20-07-14, 10:01
When me and RD get our space it will be an awesome agroforestry/permaculture accessable outdoor living space,with funky hard landscaping,including waterfeature of sorts:) Grass will probably not be needed, apart from maybe a wildflower patch, a few raised beds and perrenial veg and fruit.

It'll prob be a lot of hard graft, but we will have it:)

I've just coughed up for lifetime membership of the Agroforestry research trust. In case your not familiar with it, Agroforesty is an element of growing, that includes some permaculture that replicates the 'forest layers' with productive crops at every layer. It can be adapted on any scale with very limited space.

I tend to keep up on LYG and GW out of interest as I originally trained in the industry.. Managed 2 weeks paid work experience and another year voluntary. Better off as a designer with long term CRF and getting the minions to work for me:)
Gardening is like fashion, growers spend ages trying to produce NEW and exciting varieties, but that doesn't always mean better:)

Kew, which mean and RD are planning to visit has a Sister Garden Wakehurst Place, which has a huge collection of trees, and is also home to the National Seed bank
http://www.nationaltrust.org.uk/wakehurst-place/

Lighttouch
20-07-14, 13:08
My mum is a true gardener who takes cuttings and grows stuff from seed. Her garden is very mature and full of interest plants. She grows her own fruit and veg - it's her main hobby but she loves it.

With disability you tend to look at the practical side like what the chances of losig my balance, falling and nobody finds you for days. I leave it to a gardener who lightly maintains it these days. But I couldn't live in a place without a view of some sort of shrubbery.

Here's what happens when you can't climb ladders to prune trees. Thisis just a bit of my front and side garden. All willing hands welcome.

1027

TheFlyingKidney
20-07-14, 15:04
I see a lot of nonproductive shrubbery, but I guess whatever works. If its not your own property there's limitations on what one can do:)

RD is well experienced in permaculture ways, although I DO wish we could get the waterbutt going again. Somethings blocking it (the fitting is naff anyway but.)
Having spent a whole year working, for no money, at a large horticultural college, including the show gardens I know what can be done, and how much effort is needed to maintain things!

I've grown some black strawberries from seed (surprisingly easy), got some passiflora cuttings on the go, and yep the weeds are doing pretty well:) They are all busy trying to reproduce, the filthy things!

Lighttouch
20-07-14, 15:38
I found out recently that my mum attended horticultural school for 3 years at night school. She sees some of her fellow students working in local garden centres.

I grow a few things like rhubarb or strawberries but not intentionally - they just appear every year. Sugs and snails are my biggest enemy. It doesn't matter whether you use pellets or something more environmentally friendly they still return and chomp their way through my leafy Hostas!

I'll forgive you for thinking the forest above is out of my control. I'm afraid it belongs to me and as such there's nobody else responsible for not pruning.

I shall now go out with the edging shears to cut back the ivy and heather back from the front path as the space is getting to narrow to use my crutch. At least it's still sunny, warm with a light breeze!

Fliss
20-07-14, 17:58
I know I'm off thread topic here, apologies. But does anyone use garden tools with short handles that would work at wheelchair height? As Light says am fed up of wobbling about and would be much quicker to do sat down. Would particularly like a shorter handle hoe. Thanks!

Lighttouch
20-07-14, 18:54
Hi Fliss, I've just come in after 30 minutes of trying to trim back ivy that has crept onto the path from the border. I've done quite a bit but given up now after nearly falling backwards. My issue is trying to combat lower back stabbing pain with bad balance. I'll have another go in the morning. http://www.crocus.co.uk/product/_/de-wit-short-handled-digging-hoe/classid.2000016165/?affiliate=td

I found this link regarding wheelchair gardening and tools. http://www.carryongardening.org.uk/moving-things-in-the-garden-for-all-disabled-gardeners.aspx

Think I might try the manual wheelchair to do weeding in the morning. The grass hasn't grown much in the last two weeks so I might swop my gardeners duty of cutting the grass to using his power trimmer to prune shrubs back a bit.

Fliss
20-07-14, 19:30
Thanks for this, never seen any tools with telescopic handles but sounds like a good idea. Shall investigate!

catlover
21-07-14, 06:54
Fliss - I don't know whether you watch Gardeners world but the programme a week past Friday (the most recent one as not on this Friday gone) featured a lady who gardened from a wheelchair. She said she used child's gardening tools (not the cheap plastic ones, the properly made ones that are just like smaller versions of adult gardening tools) - I would guess some of those have shorter handles. Might be worth seeing if it is still on catch up as it might give you a few ideas.

reddivine
21-07-14, 07:06
Yes you needs a man with a chainsaw on those conifers and a hedge trim (or axe) on the shrubbery. My daughter and I attacked a large one in my garden......it was blocking light. Caused TheFlyingKidney to gasp in horror. It'll grow back.
He does sound ambitious doesn't he?
Well first we have to FIND a place, with a garden that we can afford.
Then life has taught me, OBSERVE for one year. Watch the garden through the seasons, whats doing well? what isn't? Test the soil, acidic, alkali, clay? Give the ground a good dig over (or pay a minion to). To remove stubborn weeds, rubble and god knows what you find. THEN figure out what you'd like. But go slow. In real life its not like we have a team who transform it in a week.

reddivine
21-07-14, 07:30
I know I'm off thread topic here, apologies. But does anyone use garden tools with short handles that would work at wheelchair height? As Light says am fed up of wobbling about and would be much quicker to do sat down. Would particularly like a shorter handle hoe. Thanks!
As for rakes & hoes, you could get someone to saw off a part of a standard handle. If your in a wheelchair, surely spades are a bit trickier (I don't use em) cuz you need to take one foot off the ground, and have the strength to push INTO the ground? Both of which are beyond me now. Long handled loppers work for me (for a short time) as theres more of a reach.

reddivine
21-07-14, 07:32
Fliss - I don't know whether you watch Gardeners world but the programme a week past Friday (the most recent one as not on this Friday gone) featured a lady who gardened from a wheelchair. She said she used child's gardening tools (not the cheap plastic ones, the properly made ones that are just like smaller versions of adult gardening tools) - I would guess some of those have shorter handles. Might be worth seeing if it is still on catch up as it might give you a few ideas.

Fliss, she didn't use a wheelchair to garden, her name is Nika and she was born with only two fingers and shortened arm as well as being of short stature. She did all of her gardening from raised beds, quite high ones she could stand at. Might well be copying her!

Fliss
21-07-14, 18:40
Thanks ladies, will def watch gardeners world if still possible. I went to Homebase on the way home from work and they sell hoes, rakes etc with a retractable handle. Who knew? (Think the idea is they're easier to store). I can walk round my tiny garden but I'm wobbly so tend to do stuff from my chair. And you're correct, I've never owned a spade!! More physically demanding jobs get done by other people. My beds are raised. I think my neighbours are amused by my watering regime, I need a free hand so tend to use my little scooter. I work so like some time outside in the evenings.

For the first time in years I've got bit of salad, beans and courgette growing. So pleased with myself :)

TheFlyingKidney
22-07-14, 07:28
Just some links:

http://gardeningfordisabledtrust.org.uk/

http://www.disability-grants.org/gardening-grants.html

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/gardening/9697156/Really-useful-tools-for-gardeners-with-a-disability.html

http://www.thrive.org.uk/

http://www.carryongardening.org.uk/shop/

http://rhs.org.uk/advice/profile?pid=812

Lighttouch
22-07-14, 22:29
I was over in Wigan today visiting a friend who used to work for the same organisation as me. Several months ago she and her family moved to a modest home with a great back yard.

Well my vista is a brick wall ten feet away. What must it be like when you pull back the curtains in the morning to be greated with this bit of heaven. Mind you her garden is just in the foreground. A manor house owns all the local grazing fields - one less place to weed!!

1028

TheFlyingKidney
23-07-14, 21:26
On the topic of watering. Anyone who's ever visited Beth Chatto's gardens, and in particular The Dry Garden, will find its possible to never ever water an fairly impressive ornamental garden.
I'm pretty sure it could be adapted to a small scale.

For those that find it hard to water, there are several main things.

For containers, autowatering systems. Once installed these will give your plants a soak at the best time of day. Capillary matting can be great, or even household sponges will do. Some of them are fairly sophisticated, watering only in weekdays, twice in a short time for best saturation and so on.

MULCH and Fibre. Depending on the plants, even in raised beds mulch prevents much needed water evaporating and can be anything from slate, to newspaper, gravel, or bark chippings.

Water harvesting. Vital if your on a tight budget, rainwater is currently free (although Nestle would like to change that)

@Lighttouch, bet it gets a mean chill in the winter, very exposed!

Lighttouch
23-07-14, 22:28
All my plants need to be 'arrid' resistent or either!

Cactus and fleshy leaved plants like 'mother-in -laws tongue do fine as do Yuccas.

Strawberries and Heather do well outdoors, hostas get eaten.

If anyone knows what a white dusty patches on my Japanese Maple bark means please let me know.

Re Photo. I should think it's perishing over winter time. It must look great all covered in snow - picture perfect.

TheFlyingKidney
24-07-14, 09:08
@Lighttouch

Scale insect more than likely, otherwise it might be a canker of some sort..

reddivine
24-07-14, 09:22
some more pix for the fans...103110321033
left to right......inpatiens, perstimmon and awesome baskets w strawberries, tomatos n fuschia

Lighttouch
24-07-14, 14:17
Well, here's the blighter on my Maple
http://abugblog.blogspot.co.uk/2013/06/horse-chestnut-scale-insect.html?m=1

reddivine
25-07-14, 10:32
well as you can see my the pics, I don't have your acres LT, not the miles of hedge. Daughter had a good hack at the rather large shrub to left of hanging basket. It WAS large when she started. Blight? ask the Flying Kidney, he's the one with the training!

catlover
25-07-14, 17:49
I might not have a garden, but I almost have a ripe tomato :D

http://i2.photobucket.com/albums/y43/urbantigers/oranginotomato_zpsbd319122.jpg (http://s2.photobucket.com/user/urbantigers/media/oranginotomato_zpsbd319122.jpg.html)

Lighttouch
25-07-14, 19:42
Give me a pot and a patio any day.

Well, Catlover it's far better to devote your attention to a smaller number of plants - that makes it more enjoyable.

As a disabled person surrounded by shrubs it either means you have a wild garden or you pay someone to try and keep it looking OK/

My gardener came today with his helper just to trim the hedge back - probably 80 feet of hedge but inside and out. He's here again on Tuesday cutting back, wedding and lawn cutting. It really needs a few people working a full day to get it back into shape - it's not practical for me. It's like this morning my sciatic nerve was trapped in my hip area which paralysed my left leg. I had to lie on the bed forcing my thigh backwards to try and release the trapped nerves - luckily it worked.

I don't mind paying other people to do stuff I no longer can in a safe and timely manor - it's all pain and no pleasure.

I did look into selling up and buying a two bed flat but it's ridiculous how much you spend on Estate Agents, Structural Surveys, Solicitor fees to buy and sell, stamp duty, moving costs . . . . etc. You end up spending £13k for no gain. Anyway I've lived here for 28 years so I've grown fond of it despite the hiccups.

Catlover - you must take a rosy red ripe tomato before you eat it.

I took mum to Wythenshawe Park for a light bite in their communal cafe - love tuna salad and coffee in the courtyard under a brolly - amazing value.

FlowerShow - don't tell me! Taking nieces on Sunday and we'll be there before it opens it appears. Should be fun!!

1034

TheFlyingKidney
25-07-14, 20:02
some more pix for the fans...103110321033
left to right......inpatiens, perstimmon and awesome baskets w strawberries, tomatos n fuschia

As planted by the humble garden fairy, TheFlyingKidney, I might add. She feeds me tea and biscuits and locks me in the shed at night. (OK I made that last bit up;) :p

reddivine
26-07-14, 07:39
Well to be FAIR he did the baskets.....the impatiens and persimmon were brought AFTER his visit..............

catlover
26-07-14, 07:45
Testing testing testing

catlover
26-07-14, 08:01
phew - couldn't post from the laptop so tested from my phone in case I'd been banned or something!

A reboot seems to have sorted things.

Lighttouch
26-07-14, 08:23
Well to be FAIR he did the baskets.....the impatiens and persimmon were brought AFTER his visit..............

What a cheeky monkey trying to steal your thunder! I think his rations should be reviewed - back on bread and dripping perhaps!

Lighttouch
26-07-14, 08:24
Testing testing testing

Rodger Charlie, we have a green light. All systems go!!

catlover
26-07-14, 08:32
Rodger Charlie, we have a green light. All systems go!!

Nope it's gone again. No reply box and clicking on reply does nothing. Trying to do a new post brings up a box for a fleeting moment before disappearing to be replaced by dlf banner. Hmmmm

catlover
26-07-14, 08:36
now it appears to be back. The mystery of the disappearing reply box.

Lighttouch
26-07-14, 09:37
Click on the third icon from right if you are importing a phto from your computer. You'll probably need to downsize it to no more than 500kb.
Diagram 2 - click on 'from computer. then choose jpeg from computer and click on 'upload files'.

catlover
26-07-14, 15:48
Can't view any of your attachments, Lighttouch