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A quick question for all you experts: why do my lobelias have differently coloured flowers on the same plant?Posted Image 

 

Do you mean the summer bedding type of Lobelia's or the perennial ones? If it's the summer ones, I'd guess it's because they've been bred to be multi coloured. If it's the perennial ones, it could be caused by a virus, the kind which cause variegated leaves and flowers. Also, with lots of plants which have been cross bred, they sometimes don't come true to seed and you get break through, recessive genes causing odd combinations. 

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Do you mean the summer bedding type of Lobelia's or the perennial ones? If it's the summer ones, I'd guess it's because they've been bred to be multi coloured. If it's the perennial ones, it could be caused by a virus, the kind which cause variegated leaves and flowers. Also, with lots of plants which have been cross bred, they sometimes don't come true to seed and you get break through, recessive genes causing odd combinations. 

Thanks, J...But it's quite a nice effect, either way...

 

Summer ones...

Edited by A Boy Named Sue

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I had dozens of the little buggers :-( 

i spoke to soon because i had to kill one today, there not that common up north either Posted Image

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i spoke to soon because i had to kill one today, there not that common up north either Posted Image

 

I can't remember seeing one of them in my garden before very rare as you say

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I can't remember seeing one of them in my garden before very rare as you say

i bought them last year from homebase so im thinking they came with the purchase as an extra 

 

do you have lilys gav

Edited by Lee aka Boro Snow

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The lobelias are such tiny plants when it comes to pricking out there will be several seedlings in each 'plant'.There are various colours other  than the (best imo) blue.I don't think any one plant can produce a range of colours although some kinds will change as they age so look to have a range of shades.

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The lobelias are such tiny plants when it comes to pricking out there will be several seedlings in each 'plant'.There are various colours other  than the (best imo) blue.I don't think any one plant can produce a range of colours although some kinds will change as they age so look to have a range of shades.

 

They are tiny, but commercial growers wouldn't be mixing two different types and sowing them together, unless of course there's been some mix up at the seed suppliers.

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my lilys havent flowered yet but at least i havent seen any of those lily beetles this year i keep checking them everyday because last year they were destroyed by the horrible things Posted Image

Just found one of the little beggars. Squished it and removed the offspring.

Will keep a proper look out from now on. Cheers.

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They are tiny, but commercial growers wouldn't be mixing two different types and sowing them together, unless of course there's been some mix up at the seed suppliers.

I don't know, J. But each of the individual plants has a mixture of purple, blue, pink and white flowers on them??Posted Image 

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This weeks Gardeners world (Friday 21st) on BBC 2 is the last one for a month!

 

Friday 28th - Wimbledon

 

Friday 5th - Wimbledon

 

Friday 12th - First night of the proms

 

Friday 19th - Gardeners World returns

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Does anyone know much about courgette plants? Mine are not looking great. Give them a good soak every few days, I mixed up plenty of compost into the planting area. They've been in 3 weeks or so and are very slow whilst lots on other plots are growing away like mad! Any advice appreciated.

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I don't know, J. But each of the individual plants has a mixture of purple, blue, pink and white flowers on them??Posted Image 

I'm a professional grower and there 'are' mixes of seed with give mixed colours.

 

Generally we grow 'regatta' (trailing) and 'riviera' (upright). We either grow them from mixed seed or from plugs, but you are quite right, there can be up to 20 seedlings per cell/plug of bedding Lobelia.

 

We also grow the perennial and better for bigger hanging baskets, Lobelia called  'Lobelia Richardii' now that stuff is awesome.

It's larger growing than some of the other types of bedding Lobelia and tends to be sold in with the hanging basket plants.

It's also alot more robust and flowers longer and more prolifically than the ordinary sorts.

 

Also, it's a 'self' colour so it won't mess up your colour schemes as with bedding Lobelia.

 

PS, never trust white lobelia if you want an all white scheme, you will always get odd bits of blue popping up, trust me, the amount of times I've been moaned at for selling white lobelia and then folk come back the following year moaning :-D

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Does anyone know much about courgette plants? Mine are not looking great. Give them a good soak every few days, I mixed up plenty of compost into the planting area. They've been in 3 weeks or so and are very slow whilst lots on other plots are growing away like mad! Any advice appreciated.

Are you over-watering them? If they are not very big then they won't need as much water especially if they are planted directly in the ground rather than a pot/grow bag.

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I'm a professional grower and there 'are' mixes of seed with give mixed colours.

 

Generally we grow 'regatta' (trailing) and 'riviera' (upright). We either grow them from mixed seed or from plugs, but you are quite right, there can be up to 20 seedlings per cell/plug of bedding Lobelia.

 

We also grow the perennial and better for bigger hanging baskets, Lobelia called  'Lobelia Richardii' now that stuff is awesome.

It's larger growing than some of the other types of bedding Lobelia and tends to be sold in with the hanging basket plants.

It's also alot more robust and flowers longer and more prolifically than the ordinary sorts.

 

Also, it's a 'self' colour so it won't mess up your colour schemes as with bedding Lobelia.

 

PS, never trust white lobelia if you want an all white scheme, you will always get odd bits of blue popping up, trust me, the amount of times I've been moaned at for selling white lobelia and then folk come back the following year moaning :-D

Thanks for that, CH...Posted Image

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Are you over-watering them? If they are not very big then they won't need as much water especially if they are planted directly in the ground rather than a pot/grow bag.

Thank you, will leave off the watering for now and see how they get on. Everything else doing well at the moment.

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everything is slowly starting to get a move on, but they are still way behind schedule, some things like onions, fennel, cucumber, broad beans and tomatoes may not be ready till late september though, so i hope we don't get a freak frost in september

 

wind damaged a few leaves yesterday thankfully its died down now

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All is coming on superbly here

 

The first strawberries of 2013 have been eaten and more are not far off now

 

The first of the 1st early potatoes were dug at the weekend they were lovely

 

The tomatoes are flying away now lots of tomatoes on the plants they still have a long way to go but they should be ready to pick around late July or early August

 

The apple tree is much better this year as well lots of apples on it unlike last year when there was just 2

 

All in all a much better season than last year not that it could have got any worse mind

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Does anyone know much about courgette plants? Mine are not looking great. Give them a good soak every few days, I mixed up plenty of compost into the planting area. They've been in 3 weeks or so and are very slow whilst lots on other plots are growing away like mad! Any advice appreciated.

 

Yep, mine are so slow this year too.

Always go with the yellow ones these days. Fry them up with broad beans and garlic. Magic on toast.

 

Gardening Club in a bit, 'The Cutting Garden'.  Full report to follow tomorrow. Posted Image

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An excellent talk last evening from a former BBC Gardener of the year, no less.'The Cutting Garden' took inspiration from Sarah Raven's Perch Hill and included lots of shots of the speaker's Dorset garden, taken only yesterday morning.We learnt how even veggies, such as parnips can give something worthy of a display when running to seed.The top tip for the evening was to keep cutting annuals, even when they're not needed, in order to keep them flowering throughout the season.The talk was supported by 5 pages of text/pics to take away, ranging from Propagating for the Cutting Garden, 20 top tips, conditioning flowers to a sweet pea how-to guide.All in all, the best talk we've ever had.Johnboy's Gardening Club rating - 5 Sunflowers.

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Yep, mine are so slow this year too.

Always go with the yellow ones these days. Fry them up with broad beans and garlic. Magic on toast.

 

Gardening Club in a bit, 'The Cutting Garden'.  Full report to follow tomorrow. Posted Image

 

Mmm, will try that recipe :) I use courgettes in a lot of pasta dishes and generally substitute them for mushrooms, which I can't eat. A simple spaghetti, grated courgette, cheese and garlic pasta is so good!

 

Interesting to read about 'the Cutting Garden'. This year I Chelsea Chopped my Nepeta in late May and its done it the world of good.

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Finally chance to catch up with my garden!

Going to lift the early potatoes today. Foliage seems to be dying back on the second earlies - not sure if that means they're ready or going bad...

 

Got a caterpillar infestation on my cabbages/kale/broccoli. I keep moving them onto a couple of sacrificial plants but they've almost stripped them to the bone now! 

post-94-0-98857500-1372582015_thumb.jpg

 

Toms looking good - keeping up with snipping suckers off and now topped two of them as they've hit the greenhouse roof.

 

Peppers/chillies - more concern here. Flowers have formed but many have dropped leaving only the stalk of the flower still attached to the plant. No fruit forming on any plant yet. Not sure if this is down to temperature or some other issue. Can see time running out for peppers like last year with them only getting near ripening during late Sept when sunlight gets cut off.

Need some heat! Unless anyone thinks there's another reason they would drop flowers/flower buds?

 

 

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First early potato harvest- won't feed the five thousand but not bad for a little grow bag!

post-94-0-44578100-1372585707_thumb.jpg

 

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Peppers/chillies - more concern here. Flowers have formed but many have dropped leaving only the stalk of the flower still attached to the plant. No fruit forming on any plant yet. Not sure if this is down to temperature or some other issue. Can see time running out for peppers like last year with them only getting near ripening during late Sept when sunlight gets cut off.

Need some heat! Unless anyone thinks there's another reason they would drop flowers/flower buds?

 

How annoying is that? I've grown chillis on and off for years with limited success. Got 10 plants on the go this year and foliage-wise they're in stunning shape. Flowers are on the cusp of opening but I know full well I'll get the scenario you describe. I've tried everything over the years,to no avail. C'mon - someone must know how to avoid this, or is it some arcane art that can't be whispered in public?

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The biggest cause of flower drop is due to lack of pollination. Theoretically, if they're planted outside, there should be enough Bees around to do the job, but Bees are struggling at the moment and there may not be any. Both in a greenhouse and outside, it pays to plant some pollen rich plants to attract the Bees - something stinky like a pot of Lillies usually does the trick. Or, you can go down the route of hand pollination - using a soft artist's brush, gently brush each open flower, going from one to the other, picking up pollen as you go and transferring it from one plant to another.

 

Sharp variation of temperature can cause flower drop too, ideally the temp shouldn't drop below 15c. Also, they like a slightly acidic soil; potting compost like growbags etc are ph neutral. I know it's too late for this year, but for next try mixing roughly 25% ericaceous into the compost before potting on.

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