What's doing well this year?

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What's doing well this year?

Post by peirol on Tue Jul 15, 2014 4:03 pm

After the extraordinarily mild winter followed by the damp spring, I have found that my plants have been behaving a bit differently this year. Yesterday I picked the most miserable crop of gooseberries - about 25 berries, where I would normally have hundreds. The rhubarb started badly, but now seems to be belatedly flourishing. The weeping willow has a nasty attack of some fungal infection, and I almost lost my apricot tree to 'apricot canker'; however, I cut it right back to the trunk and it has revived and sent out lots of vigorous new branches.

Some plants seem to have thrived in the unusual conditions, though: the vine is looking good and my little olive tree is covered in baby olives!

I wonder if others are finding that their plants are doing differently from usual this year?

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Re: What's doing well this year?

Post by tocyvi on Wed Jul 16, 2014 1:07 pm

Hi Peirol
The rhododendrons, azaleas and pieris have loved all the summer rain. They suffered badly in the really bad winter 2 years ago but have put on a lot of growth this year and have completely recovered. The gooseberry bushes have only been in for 2 years but, despite that, gave us a decent crop, considering they are still quite small.

It is certainly true that it has not been a normal year - very mild winter, a lot more rain than usual and (up until now) no drought conditions to stress the plants. Apparently the El Nino event will be more marked in 2014/15, which will result in more rain/less rain, cooler winter/milder winter, drought/floods etc etc depending upon which forecast you read.
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Re: What's doing well this year?

Post by Amber on Wed Jul 16, 2014 6:20 pm

My gooseberries have done really well and so has the rhubarb. Our peach tree died over the winter, no idea why but maybe just old age but the greengage tree has more fruit on it than I've ever seen since moving here 6 years ago and we thought it was on its last legs! I'm having more problems with snails eating the veg than ever before and the chard has bolted and gone to seed.

It just shows there is nothing 'normal' or 'average' about gardening!

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Re: What's doing well this year?

Post by Tony H on Wed Jul 16, 2014 7:45 pm

Good crop of raspberries and blackcurrants but the things that grow best are the weeds. Why do they grow twice as fast as the veg !

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Re: What's doing well this year?

Post by twointheeye on Thu Jul 17, 2014 2:02 pm

Our nettles and ferns are doing splendidly. Everything else is relatively new so it's early days. Except the vines we discovered when all the ivy was cleared away. Loads of bunches on them.

We don't seem to have a snail or slug problem (Mrs touches Mr Two's bonce as wood-substitute), maybe it's the toads and hedgehogs we keep coming across who are eating them?


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Re: What's doing well this year?

Post by tocyvi on Thu Jul 17, 2014 2:12 pm

twointheeye wrote:We don't seem to have a snail or slug problem ..... maybe it's the toads and hedgehogs we keep coming across who are eating them?

Both of these are great friends to gardeners. I love seeing the hedgehogs ferreting about (can ferrets hedgehog about?) and I encourage them by piling up dead sticks and fallen branches and covering these with leaves and grass cuttings. This provides an excellent nest for winter hibernation and in the early spring warmth, you will frequently be rewarded by seeing them searching around for a meal.
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