Brian Kidd has the solutions to your gardening problems 

Brian says Petita cucumber plants fruit more than Telegraph ones.
Brian says Petita cucumber plants fruit more than Telegraph ones.

Our horticultural hotshot delves into his inbox and post bag. 

Q: We went for a long walk and enjoyed seeing the golden catkins. My little boy saw some tiny brown buds with 5 little hairs coloured red growing out of the tops. Do you know what they are? GC, Copnor.

A: They were catkins of hazel nut trees and the red hairs are on top of the buds are the female flowers. The male pollen will fall on to the red hairs and the brown buds will become nuts. Your boy is very observant. 

Q: I’ve been growing Telegraph cucumbers for years and I always attain six cucumbers each summer. Do you think I would get more cucumbers on the Petita types? FV, Havant.

A: Yes, the Petita cucumber fruits are only about eight inches long but the fruits grow much quicker than Telegraph. In my Polytunnel, I get about 30 on one plant but it’s very hot in there – cucumbers love heat, humidity and lots of feed too.

Q: I am very upset having been told I have a fungus called Fusarium in my lovely lawn. I have looked at products at my garden centre and can’t find a fungicide for this problem. What would you suggest? GC, Cowplain.

A: I am sorry you have these nasty patches, this disease is more likely to strike on very fine turf but if not treated it will continue to spread. I have sent you the contact details of a turf care business and they will be able to use the correct fungicide. Do not be alarmed, they will give you a quote and I think you will be surprised it will not be too expensive. Glad to help.

Q: My Cyclamen has produced a large round kind of pod, I assume this is a seed pod. When will the seeds inside to ready to sow? SP, Waterlooville.

A: Leave the pod on the pot plant until the end of April and sow the seeds in August. You will be reminded as it is in the jobs for the week in August.

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