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Is sycamore soil toxic?

I planted spring bulbs (snowdrops and bluebell H. nonscripta) under a sycamore tree and nothing has come up. I cleared and raked the area well before planting, cut away the lowest branches, so there's plenty of light and rain getting to the soil, but still not flowers. Just wondering if the sycamore itself might be inhibiting growth. I know it happens with beech. liveen, Galway, Co Galway Posted: 20/03/2017

Bluebells actually thrive under beech trees. And the sycamore is marginally toxic to grasses, not bulbs. There may be some foliage of these bulbs present, but the bulbs were slow to flower, being too small.


Tulip bulbs. Is it too late?

I have Tulip bulbs stored in old newspapers in my garage. They are sprouting. Is it too late to set them in mosspeat in pots? Will they be ok if left there until December? Seanbss, Mullingar, Co Westmeath Posted: 13/02/2017

Plant immediately ... keep the sprouts jsut about soil. Do not wait, they will be dead before December. 


Storing Dahlia Tubers

I want to store my Dahlia tubers, which have been growing in the herbaceous borders, indoors over winter in pots. I read that they should be placed in Peat or sand but I'm wondering if I could use Multipurpose Compost instead? My long term plan is to put them back out in a coldframe in March/April before planting back out in the borders as young plants in late May/early June. DonFoley, Maynooth, Co Kildare Posted: 11/11/2016

Yes, multipurpose will be fine.Watch the moisture levels in the compost. Dry but not dust-dry and they might shrivel and need a soak for a day in winter to plump up.


Using aquatic pots

I was wondering if I could use aquatic pots for planting Tulips. I am considering starting the Tulips in these and once into growth I will put them in their final positions in the ground and in pots. Their final positions aren't available for a couple of months yet. These pots will also make removing bulbs after flowering very easy. DonFoley, Maynooth, Co Kildare Posted: 27/10/2016

There is no reason why not.

  Sardinian plant

Sardinian plant

On holidays last week (Mid Oct) and I came across this in a coastal forest in very sandy soil. It was the last of them, all the others had gone to seed. Any Idea what it is? I brought seed home but don't know what way to plant them. Aconite, , Posted: 19/10/2016

It looks like hymenocallis, related to hippeastrum.



My dahlias (which I have for several years) produced a lot of leaves but not a lot of flowers this year. Why was that and how can I increase flowers next year? I don't lift them in winter. Munroe, ., Co Mayo Posted: 04/10/2016

When dahlias do not flower it could be due to the soil being too rich and moist, or too shaded, or too much competition from other plants, and possibly a late start due to snail damage to the new shoots of plants overwintered in the ground. Address one or more of these and use a high potash feed.


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