Gardeners’ question time with Brian Kidd

If your allotment is smothered with weeds, here's what to do...
If your allotment is smothered with weeds, here's what to do...
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Our horticultural hotshot solves your problems.

Q: I have a single white camellia and my sister would like me to split it so she can have half. How can I do this and when should it be done? VC, Cosham.

A: You can’t split a camellia unless there are two distinct stems growing out of the ground which means there were two plants in the pot when you bought it. Cuttings taken with a heel can be rooted now. I have sent you a diagram showing you how to do this.

Q: I took on an allotment and it took me more than over 40 hours over six weeks and it looked good but is now smothered in weeds. What should I do? GL, Fareham.

A: Mark out the plot in four feet-wide strips with string and then use a pump sprayer with Roundup weedkiller. Do this on a dry windless day. The string will ensure you have the correct coverage. The weeds will die after a fortnight.

Q: We have an area of white toadstools in our new lawn and it is very annoying. What can we do? We do not wish to harm the grass because it looks really good. FD, Whiteley.

A: Simply pick them off and put them in a container. If left on the grass the problem will be even worse next year. There is no need to use a fungicide but you can buy one at a garden centre if you ask a member of the staff. The problem is caused by dead wood or root which was left in the ground when the soil was prepared.

Q: We love baby greens of all types but are there any which are totally hardy? H and LG, Milton

A: A very hardy one is spinach and if you want the seedlings for green baby leaves this is sown outdoors right now. It will survive winter and next year will produce lovely large leaves or you can continue to cut off baby leaves. A packet usually contains about 250 seeds.​​​​​​​

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