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  • Theres this cordless strimmer from Argos it has a 35 min run time & looking at the reviews shows you how much battery powers left,that would be handy

    Buy Spear & Jackson S1825CT 25cm Cordless Grass Trimmer - 18V at Argos.co.uk - Your Online Shop for Grass trimmers and accessories, Lawnmowers and garden power tools, Home and garden.
    Location : Essex

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    • I have enormous beetroot envy Penellers...

      If buying a cordless tool, remember that batteries are a big chunk of the cost, so have a think if you are likely to buy any other cordless tools and pick a product that is part of a range. I bought my (Bosch) cordless strimmer as it matches my cordless drill, so I can now have a lot of strimming time thanks to two usable batteries. (I'm now looking to buy a jigsaw from the same range and I won't need to buy a battery).

      What kind of battery is it? (I can't see the thing). I'd only go for Li-Ion - they are so much better than the previous technologies.

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      • Originally posted by bikermike View Post
        I have enormous beetroot envy Penellers...

        If buying a cordless tool, remember that batteries are a big chunk of the cost, so have a think if you are likely to buy any other cordless tools and pick a product that is part of a range. I bought my (Bosch) cordless strimmer as it matches my cordless drill, so I can now have a lot of strimming time thanks to two usable batteries. (I'm now looking to buy a jigsaw from the same range and I won't need to buy a battery).

        What kind of battery is it? (I can't see the thing). I'd only go for Li-Ion - they are so much better than the previous technologies.
        The tool I wanted was made by Worx - I have a Worx battery mower at home, so I was looking to share batteries. I am inclining towards the push mower though, as there are not huge amounts of grass to cut.
        A life is like a garden. Perfect moments can be had, but not preserved, except in memory. LLAP. - Leonard Nimoy

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        • A dull, windy and at times damp day, not at all inspiring for getting things done outside, so I spent much of the morning sorting out stuff in the garage. Went down to the plot at lunchtime and spent an hour or so weeding and digging out horsetail roots.

          I was going to go back later but when I got home I found my computer had crashed and it was soon clear that this was pretty much fatal. The thing will reboot, but it soon crashes again with a memory problem. I've been expecting trouble for a while as it has been rather wobbly, so I have everything safely backed up. So instead of more gardening I had a trip to PC World. Typically they didn't have exactly what I wanted and had to order it, so I will need to go and collect it tomorrow. As work is computing and I can't be without a machine, I have a spare one which I am using at the moment, but it is old so I can't rely on it for long.
          A life is like a garden. Perfect moments can be had, but not preserved, except in memory. LLAP. - Leonard Nimoy

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          • Just a couple of quick visits to the allotment today as most of the day was spent collecting and attempting to set up my new computer.

            Opened the cloches first thing so that the potatoes and plants in the hotbed didn't cook. Collected a jar full of snails which were congregating on the rhubarb leaves as well as the tunnel mesh. Also fitted another clip to the tunnel door so I can shut it from inside as well as outside.

            Went back at lunchtime and spent about 1/2 an hour digging out more horsetail from the paths and tunnel. Watered the potatoes and hotbed and checked the seedlings, which are still vanishing, presumably due to slugs and snails. Found 2 adult vine weevils near the shed - not a good sign. Those 2 have been squashed but I suspect there will be plenty more.
            A life is like a garden. Perfect moments can be had, but not preserved, except in memory. LLAP. - Leonard Nimoy

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            • Yesterday was busy, as Thursday often is, so I only had time for a quick visit first thing to pick off any slugs and snails and an evening watering session. My new push mower arrived so I put it together ready to take to the plot today.

              Another gorgeous day today, but quite a heavy dew so playing with the mower had to wait until after lunch when the grass had dried. I spent a good hour pulling out horsetail from the paths and raised beds. Some of it is making fruiting heads, which are already starting to release dusty pink spores. Wretched stuff! I just hope I don't bring it home on my clothes as I don't have it in my garden at the moment.

              I'm still finding a large number of slugs and snails, and there is damage on most of the plants, mainly not too serious. However the carrot seedlings are really suffering. I decided to try a variation on the theme of the plastic bottle copper rings. When I sorted through next door's pile of rubbish some of the items I salvaged were 3 long pieces of white plastic strip, about 3 inches wide. I decided to cut one of these into 2 3ft lengths to fit across the width of the raised beds. I then put a strip of copper tape along the upper part of one side of each strip, and put them copper side out, one either side of a row of carrots, securing them from the "inside" with hooks that came with the plastic cloches. Of course there may already be slugs hiding in the soil inside this area, and I haven't (yet) made any end pieces. I'm going to see how this works before I make any more.

              Next job was something I've been intending to do for a while - make a more sensible edge to the grass path. The previous plot holder put in some pieces of white plastic, which have done a good job of keeping back the grass, but stuck up about 6 inches making cutting the grass difficult, and had gaps between which the grass was growing through. At the rhubarb end there were 2 shorter pieces of plastic about a foot high, which were to be frank, a real nuisance. I took my spade down in the car along with the mower and 13 2ft pieces of edging that were left over from making the raised part of my veg garden at home.

              Digging out the pieces of plastic was easier than I expected and I soon had them out. I cut the grass down the path (very unlevel, so the mower didn't do a great job), then started to put in the edging pieces. By this time I was getting very hot, so I went home for a rest and some lunch.

              In the afternoon I decided to clear out the shed, as that was at least in the shade and I needed to make some space for the mower. I folded up all the bubble wrap that was round the water bins (which I have been drying in the tunnel recently) and put it in a bag and sorted out some seed trays that contained miscellaneous nails, screws, cable ties, plant labels and assorted jumble, most of which might be useful. I then mowed the rest of the grass. The mower is ok, and certainly does a better and quicker job than the hand shears. I will have to take a spanner down though, because 2 of the bolts that I'd tightened as much as I could by hand came undone and one of the nuts has got lost. Fortunately there was one in the shed amongst the things I had tidied up, but I don't want to be losing any more.

              I finished putting in the last couple of pieces of edging which has done the path from the rhubarb to the far side of the last raised bed. The white plastic pieces fit nicely round the grass side of the raspberry bed, and hopefully I will be able to put these in over the weekend. They require a bit more digging than the ones I brought from home as they are deeper.

              Finally I gave everything in raised beds and pots some water. I have nearly used all the water in the blue barrel already after just 3 days of sun and warmth.
              Last edited by Penellype; 20-04-2018, 08:51 PM.
              A life is like a garden. Perfect moments can be had, but not preserved, except in memory. LLAP. - Leonard Nimoy

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              • Quite a productive weekend, although a lot of it was not at the allotment.

                Yesterday I planted out the Douce Provence peas in a row in front of the Meteor. These are supposed to be short, so they just have some sticks to climb up, meaning that I will be able to reach the Meteor over the top of them (that's the plan anyway). I removed all the slugs and snails I could find and pulled out the horsetail that was poking through the paths and in the raised beds. While I was at it I sowed another row of carrots and one of leeks. It was too hot to do much else so I went home, taking some spinach from the hotbed for tea - the leaves on this are much, much bigger than I have ever seen on this variety (Amazon) before.

                In the evening I walked back down and watered everything, then as it was cooler I dug over most of the bed next to the rhubarb, to remove any horsetail roots I could find (quite a few - this is the 3rd digging). I've decided not to plant the blackcurrant and gooseberry bushes here for now - they can stay in their buckets for this year and be moved into the tunnel for fruiting. That way I won't need to net them to keep off the birds (although I may need to put a finer net over the gooseberry to keep off the sawflies). I will probably grow courgettes or tomatoes in this bed this year - it is nice and sunny.

                There was quite a heavy shower (with a bit of thunder) over night, so I went down first thing to collect the water before it evaporated. There were loads more snails and a few slugs about so I took them to my friend's for the chickens. By the time I had finished in my friend's garden it was raining so I just did a quick dash to pick some salad leaves for lunch.

                It stopped raining fairly early in the afternoon, so I went back down with a spanner and tightened all the bolts on the lawn mower. Then I shredded a bit of leylandii just to keep doing some, and spent an hour in the tunnel. The horsetail is poking up everywhere I haven't dug, including under the weed suppressant and I decided I was going to dig it out of the west side (nearest the hedge) as this was out of the sun and so not so hot. I rolled back the weed suppressant carefully and picked up about half a jam jar of slugs. Then I started digging from the shed end. I got through about 1/3 of the length of the path before my back had had enough.

                Finally I cut off some rhubarb flowers and harvested some stems to cook for the freezer.
                A life is like a garden. Perfect moments can be had, but not preserved, except in memory. LLAP. - Leonard Nimoy

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                • Horsetail, horsetail and more horsetail. Spent about an hour this morning digging more roots out of the tunnel - I've now got about half way down the west side. Had to stop at lunchtime as my back was starting to protest. Took a couple of lettuces home for lunch - these are getting quite big.

                  Went back late afternoon and pulled as much horsetail as I could find out of the raised beds. No doubt it will be back by tomorrow. All of the carrot seedlings sown in the raised bed have now disappeared except for the ones that I put a plastic barrier with copper tape on round. There were 3 decent sized seedlings left in this row when I put the barrier up, and there are still 3 today. Seems promising. The parsnips in the same bed have not shown at all, which probably isn't surprising as it was old seed. I will sow some more from an unopened packet either tomorrow or Wednesday.
                  A life is like a garden. Perfect moments can be had, but not preserved, except in memory. LLAP. - Leonard Nimoy

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                  • Very little time yesterday so the horsetail got a day off. I did have time to nip down in the morning and pick some spinach for my Mum, and remove some slugs and snails. I also sowed some parsnips from a new packet in the same rows as the previous sowings. Stopped off on the way to the stables in the evening (in the pouring rain) to tip the water from the various tubs, dustbin lids and wheelbarrow into the water butts. I also closed the tops of the hotbed and potato tunnel as it was forecast to drop to 6 over night.

                    This morning I've been down to open the covers and collected more water and a whole jam jar full of slugs and snails including some caught in the act of eating my peas.
                    Last edited by Penellype; 25-04-2018, 08:14 AM.
                    A life is like a garden. Perfect moments can be had, but not preserved, except in memory. LLAP. - Leonard Nimoy

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                    • I haven't seen any slugs yet, nor any traces of them.
                      Hopefully I won't, because that'll mean that the stuff I've tried from Victoriana does work - well, assuming that the neighbours do get any ;-)

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                      • The last couple of days have been spent almost exclusively digging horsetail out of the tunnel and collecting slugs and snails (plus a few other things at home). I've now finished digging the west side of the tunnel and peeled back some of the weed matting to make a start on the east side. I took 4 trugs full of roots to the tip yesterday and I've already half filled one of the trugs with what I dug out yesterday afternoon. There is no way I have got most of it out, but if I've got half out that's progress and at least I am curbing its enthusiasm a bit.

                        In between sessions of digging horsetail out of the tunnel (which is tiring not least because I have to stoop slightly all the time because of the tunnel top) I've been removing as much of it as I can from the raised beds and paths using an old kitchen knife. It seems to grow about an inch a day and is coming up everywhere. I've also got dandelions flowering, so I've been nipping the flowers off whenever I see them. I WILL get on top of this lot, but it is going to take some time.

                        I'm hugely impressed with the hotbed, particularly the spinach. I had big doubts about growing spinach over heat, expecting it to bolt very quickly, but it hasn't, and it is producing some huge leaves:

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                        I picked these on Wednesday - somewhere under there is a standard sized mixing bowl and that is a 15 inch ruler at the bottom of the picture! There is a little slug damage, but nothing serious. Variety is Amazon.

                        Strangely while I was digging the tunnel yesterday in a moderate breeze, the covers on both the hotbed and the potato bed (which were open for ventilation) both blew off enough to pull the frames apart and I had to go and put them back together. These tunnels have survived the winter gales we had, which were much stronger, so I can only think that the wind direction coupled with the fact than they were open was the cause.

                        Today may well be a write-off as it is forecast to rain until this evening.
                        A life is like a garden. Perfect moments can be had, but not preserved, except in memory. LLAP. - Leonard Nimoy

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                        • Didn't get much done on Friday but managed to harvest some rhubarb and collect up another jar of slugs and snails which were out in force in the damp weather. Also collected up the rain water and put it into the water butt.

                          Saturday was better although not warm, and a little drizzly at times. I spent a good hour digging horsetail out of the tunnel with the result that I have nearly finished the southern half. The east side is much more thickly infested with roots and it is quite slow going. I also removed large numbers of horsetail shoots from the raised beds.

                          Unfortunately while filling haynets for my horses yesterday evening I tweaked my back (the haylage we have comes in large, quite solid and heavy slices and I must have pulled and twisted at the same time while struggling to separate it). I therefore had to take it rather more easy than I would have liked today, which meant no digging. Hopefully it will recover enough for me to get on with things on Tuesday when the weather improves.

                          There was plenty else to do. I cut a couple more pieces of plastic and put copper tape on them to protect the carrots I sowed last week from slugs. Hopefully these will germinate when the weather warms up, and as there are still 3 seedlings between the pair I made earlier, I'm hopeful they will actually get a chance to grow.

                          I cut the grass, using both the push mower and my edging shears, and was quite pleased with the result. While moving some bits of wood for the mowing I uncovered a toad, which I carefully moved to the wildlife corner where it would be safe from grass cutting.

                          I also chopped up some more of the never ending pile of leylandii and rigged up a bubble wrap cover for the early potatoes, which are getting far too big for their cloche and poking out of the ventilation holes. I really need to remove that cloche as soon as possible, but not when frost is forecast!

                          Finally I picked a huge bagful of spinach from the hotbed. It is growing faster than I can eat it at the moment, so some is going in the freezer.
                          A life is like a garden. Perfect moments can be had, but not preserved, except in memory. LLAP. - Leonard Nimoy

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                          • Full marks to the man that invented the freezer...
                            Shame nobody has invented/discovered a cure for 'Common Colds, Slug infestation and/or a way to prevent horse tail growth.......have we really put Men on the moon or was that in my dreams >???
                            Never Let the BAD be the Enemy of the GOOD

                            Conservation and Preservation for the Future Generation

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                            • Luckily the wet weather missed us here and it was not a bad day, apart from a freezing cold north wind. Even the reasonably strong end of April sunshine couldn't make much impression on the temperature and I walked down to the allotment in a thick fleece, a windproof coat and winter gloves, and wondered why I hadn't added my overtrousers!

                              The wind had removed the bubble wrap cover from the potatoes inside the tunnel but otherwise everything was still in place. No snails climbing the netting today - they had more sense. I did a bit more digging and after half an hour or so I felt warm enough to unzip my coat. I decided that was probably enough as I didn't want to aggravate my back.

                              I put the bubble wrap back over the potatoes and secured it with an extra brick. The strawberry runners that I potted up a month or so ago went into the shed - the ones in the ground will have to take their chances with the frost.

                              Tomorrow should be warmer. it had better be!
                              A life is like a garden. Perfect moments can be had, but not preserved, except in memory. LLAP. - Leonard Nimoy

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                              • Re Horsetail, horsetail and more horsetail.

                                Last year my raised bed for broccoli and kale was covered all year with ground fabric. Plants grew through holes.
                                Just recently I composted what was left of the plants, lifted the fabric and gave a quick fork over.
                                Horsetail still alive and kicking.

                                Also in the front garden I have a 6ft square patch that has been left for years. I think 30 years ago it was a rock garden by the number of rocks I have dug out. The horsetail has had free reign,rein,rain (choose applicable) and is basically one solid mat. I keep digging it over but think fabric may be required. I have filled a big wheelie bin with the black liquorice .


                                Jimmy
                                Expect the worst in life and you will probably have under estimated!

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