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flowers: Q & A; Gardening.

Byline: Carolyn Spray

Q How can I extend the picking season for my vegetables?

A The best way is to grow earlier under cloches.

This will extend the season by at least a month. Glass, plastic or polythene cloches all work well and can be re-used.

Q I like fuchsias on stalks. How do I grow them?

A These are called standard fuchsias and they take a year or two to grow. The young plant is allowed to grow upright without pinching and the side shoots are removed until the desired height is reached. The plant is then pinched and allowed to form a head.

Q The front of my privet hedge is near the road and has gone brown and dropped leaves. The back is fine. What has caused this and will it grow back?

A The cold winter has meant more salt has been scattered on the roads to melt ice and this has splashed onto your hedge. It should regrow in the spring.

Q My lawn is over-run by moss. When should I apply a moss killer?

A Wait until the grass starts to grow in April then use a combined moss killer and fertiliser. This will burn away the moss and encourage new grass to grow.

Q I'm confused by all the different varieties of tomato. Which are best for growing in my greenhouse?

A Ordinary tomatoes are open pollinated and have no disease resistance compared to F1 hybrids. Cherry tomatoes have smaller fruits but more of them and they tend to be sweeter. Good F1 hybrids to try are Shirley and Sweet 100.

Q I love basil and use it regularly in cooking so I'm keen to grow it myself. Can you advise me on the most successful way?

A I use a pot between 10cm and 13cm depending on the size of plant you wish to grow. Fill it with seed compost then sow the basil seed evenly over the surface. Cover lightly with more compost and keep on a warm sunny windowsill to guarantee good growth.
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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:Sunday Mail (Glasgow, Scotland)
Date:Mar 15, 2009
Words:343
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