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blakeyboy

How's your garden looking after fine weather and time?

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7 minutes ago, mrbadexample said:

I like a bit of wildlife and if it pollinates my vegetables or eats slugs, so much the better. :)

 

Correct. Since the hedgehogs returned three years ago we haven't seen more than the occasional slug. :)

Just need to retrain them to get rid of the cats.

 

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11 minutes ago, mrbadexample said:

I couldn't be doing with all that grass. To my mind the purpose of a garden is to save me having to go to Sainsbury's to buy carrots. And to have tomatoes with flavour. And gooseberries for pie. 

I like a bit of wildlife and if it pollinates my vegetables or eats slugs, so much the better. :)

 

Agreed. I also have a couple of Bay trees, a gooseberry bush and pots with mint, chillies and chives in - all useful in the kitchen.

The only new thing I have planted this year is a globe artichoke - my favourite vegetable and almost unobtainable in the local supermarkets and greengrocers. I may not get any heads this year, but by next year - here's hoping. Steamed whole and eaten as a starter with lashings of butter!

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We have a family of these nesting this year and he's been so efficient that he has had to start searching the undergrowth for more snails.

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6 minutes ago, Paddy said:

Agreed. I also have a couple of Bay trees, a gooseberry bush and pots with mint, chillies and chives in - all useful in the kitchen.

The only new thing I have planted this year is a globe artichoke - my favourite vegetable and almost unobtainable in the local supermarkets and greengrocers. I may not get any heads this year, but by next year - here's hoping. Steamed whole and eaten as a starter with lashings of butter!

As long as you don't let them flower in the first year apparently.
Ours are now getting long in the tooth so we don't get too many decent ones any more.
This one shows promise and I have 18 new ones in the greenhouse almost ready for planting out.

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17 minutes ago, Rob said:

Correct. Since the hedgehogs returned three years ago we haven't seen more than the occasional slug. :)

Just need to retrain them to get rid of the cats.

 

I've built them a  house up by the pond - if they come I'd be delighted.

DSCF2925.jpg

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15 minutes ago, Fubar said:

We have a family of these nesting this year and he's been so efficient that he has had to start searching the undergrowth for more snails.

Don't think I've ever seen a thrush round here. :( Used to see them all the time growing up in Kent. 

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2 minutes ago, mrbadexample said:

Don't think I've ever seen a thrush round here. :( Used to see them all the time growing up in Kent. 

That is sad. 😥
So far I've counted about 16 species of bird visiting or living here and with no mechanical background noise during this period it seems they've all found voice at the same time.
At the end of the day this is what gardens are really for.

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34 minutes ago, mrbadexample said:

I've built them a  house up by the pond - if they come I'd be delighted.

DSCF2925.jpg

Apparently the key to a good house is a small entrance, with sufficient distance to the back such that nothing can claw them out. An interior dogleg is good because cats and foxes will struggle to get round the corner. Grand Designs has nothing on us.

Same goes for a feeding station when they first appear. We made one out of a cracked storage box with the bottom of a tall thin flower pot cut off to restrict the entrance. Much amusement when the cat forced its head  and one leg through but the rest wouldn't fit, so it skulked off back home on three legs with the tube securely fixed around its midriff. :) It doesn't try to gain access any more for some reason.

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If I made another one I'd put a dogleg in. Not that it was much fun to make - It was the biggest stump I had - it's about 10" deep and took a fair bit of effort to hollow out, even starting with a chainsaw.

How big is a small entrance? I think mine's about right but it's been so long since I've seen a hedgehog it's hard to be sure. That's about 3" high.

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51 minutes ago, mrbadexample said:

Don't think I've ever seen a thrush round here. :( Used to see them all the time growing up in Kent. 

Thrushes have been almost wiped out in more urban areas by slug pellets. Apparently they find them irresistible and they kill them quickly and painfully. One garden "essential" that should be banned! Hedgehogs are also killed by them.

The local woodland here has quite a few thrushes - amongst many other species of wildlife - but they don't venture into the back gardens much anymore.

 

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I buried it in leaf litter that promptly blew into the pond to nourish the blanketweed. :rolleyes:

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16 minutes ago, mrbadexample said:

If I made another one I'd put a dogleg in. Not that it was much fun to make - It was the biggest stump I had - it's about 10" deep and took a fair bit of effort to hollow out, even starting with a chainsaw.

How big is a small entrance? I think mine's about right but it's been so long since I've seen a hedgehog it's hard to be sure. That's about 3" high.

That should be ok. It's the depth that counts. The longer the entrance, the less chance of hooking a leg round the corner. Use offcuts - that's what the wife did.

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I may never get hedgehogs in the garden, but it won't be because I haven't tried. :)

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1 minute ago, mrbadexample said:

I may never get hedgehogs in the garden, but it won't be because I haven't tried. :)

Holes in fences help.

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1 minute ago, Rob said:

Holes in fences help.

Got two under the long back fence and they can get under the gate at the front. :)

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Here's my regular visiting fox, just having a snooze in the late afternoon. As far as I can judge, he's either a grey fox, or he's a hybrid grey/red. Pic is a bit grainy as its taken through glass.

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5 minutes ago, DaveG38 said:

Here's my regular visiting fox, just having a snooze in the late afternoon. As far as I can judge, he's either a grey fox, or he's a hybrid grey/red. Pic is a bit grainy as its taken through glass.

 

I didn't know there were grey foxes. Are you sure you're not thinking of squirrels? :unsure:

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11 minutes ago, mrbadexample said:

I didn't know there were grey foxes. Are you sure you're not thinking of squirrels? :unsure:

There are but in N. America. Ooops! He must be red fox, but apart from the head he's nothing like a red fox. Body colour is all wrong, tail colour and shape isn't right. Not sure what type he is, except he's definitely a fox.

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As a slight detour from gardens, I have spent a chunk of this week building a work bench for myself in the garage. (Previous owner, understandably, took his bench with him.) I have been longing to share it with anyone, so here it is! Made entirely from 4x2 cheap timber and about 8 foot long - designed to take a substantial wood-turning lathe:

 

Workbench Red.JPG

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That'll outlast you Paddy. :D

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38 minutes ago, mrbadexample said:

That'll outlast you Paddy. :D

I hope so! I hope I never have to move again as that would be a pig to dismantle and I can barely lift one end as it is!

 

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11 hours ago, Rob said:

That should be ok. It's the depth that counts. The longer the entrance, the less chance of hooking a leg round the corner. Use offcuts - that's what the wife did.

I she comfortable under the log now?

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Excellent piece of work.....though I tend to find that I have to put in diagonal braces to stop wobble after a while, even when bolted.  I am starting barn shelving out of 3x2” pine and 18mm shuttering ply later today, wife and I put last coat of limewash on the wall this morning. The homestead is almost starting to look tidy,  have spent the last couple of months laying flagstones and cobbles!

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Posted (edited)

More. Got to keep Historic England happy,  two small areas of cobbles and a remnant of flagstone floor was revealed when I broke up the concrete cow-house floor (With listed building consent). The flagstones I used were already on site from works in the ‘70’s under the previous owner who had taken them up, and the reclaimed cobbles had been used as hard-core under the C20 concrete.
 

Jerry

 

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Edited by jelida
I cant get the bl**dy photos to stay upright!
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If anybody can correct the pics orientation, please do!

Jerry

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