Green Fingers I Wish

Monday, August 31, 2009

Gardeners Using Manure Tainted by Herbicide

A recent spate of gardening disasters across the U.K. has been blamed on people being unaware that they are using manure containing aminopyralid, a weed killer used by farmers to combat docks, nettles and thistles.

Grass, silage and hay that has been treated with the herbicide is then eaten by cattle and passes through them onto bedding hay that is then made into manure to be used on Britain’s gardens. The company responsible for producing the weed killer, Dow AgroSciences, warned that any manure that was produced by animals having eaten treated grass should not then be used on sensitive crops. The problem is that those who spray the crops may not be responsible for collecting the manure and so it is very difficult to trace manure that might be affected.

The herbicide is now no longer used but old stocks of manure may still contain traces.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

RSPB Says Big Increase In Killings of Birds

The RSPB received over 1,200 reports of shooting, poisoning, trapping and disturbance of rare birds like golden eagles and hen harriers.

This figure is the second highest ever recorded by the charity. Many more are believed to have gone undetected and unreported.

Crimes against birds of prey aren`t recorded though for some peculiar reason, so don`t get included in national statistics.

It seems the Home Ofiice do not take crimes against birds all that seriously, so it appears that the police are less interested in tackling crime for which there are no figures.

Meanwhile we are in danger of seeing some species of birds completely wiped out, which can`t be allowed to happen.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Eden Gardening Course Makes a Return

The Eden Project's Practical Horticulture program to encourage gardeners is returning to Cornwall. This will be its second year.

In conjunction with Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh, the program will run for nine months from September 19 through to June 19 2010.

The courses will take place at the project's main site and at their Watering Lane nursery near Pentewan.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Wild Rabbits causing Problems

Wild rabbits appear to be making nuisances of themselves from one corner of the world over to the other side.

Apparently they are causing thousands of dollars worth of damage to playing fields at some sporting facilities in Australia. The home of the St George Illawarra Dragons is among a number of sporting facilities that have fallen victim to repeated attacks by rabbits - and we're not talking the South Sydney variety.

Wild herds of rabbits, which have made a home in bitou bush along the coast in Wollongong, have caused thousands of dollars worth of damage to fields of the city's sporting organisations - and the holes they dig have created an injury risk for many of our top sportspeople.

And in the UK farmers are complaining about the damage wild rabbits are doing to their land. Tighter restrictions now mean that rabbits aren`t being culled as they once were, and are breeding quickly.

Wednesday, August 05, 2009

Plea to Support Bee Population

I`ve seen reports that suggest that honey bees will be completely wiped out in ten years if we do not do something to stop it happening.

Put simply, we just can not afford to allow that to happen. It has been said that the value of commercial crops which benefit from bee pollination is estimated at £100 million to £200 million a year. Honey is worth some £10 million to £30 million.

So, householders are being asked to support more bees by placing beehies in their gardens, balconies, and anywhere else they can thrive. We can also help to support wild bee species such as bumblebees by planting insect-friendly plants in our gardens.

Sunday, August 02, 2009

Tatton Park Has Lots to See

My daughter is off to look around Tatton Park in Knutsford for the day shortly. Tatton Park is a wonderul park with gardens from around the world, one of the best know being the Japanese Garden.

The Park has a Mansion, gardens, farm, Old Hall, and 1,000 acre deer park. Organisers put on over one hundred events each year.

The award winning estate gets over 750,000 visits annually.

Just one event running at the moment is the Tuesday June 30th to Sunday August 16th -

Textile Exhibition in the Mansion

This event is to celebrate the Three Shires Festival with this special exhibition featuring costumes, furnishings and historic clothing.

Every year Tatton puts on a concert of classical music, which includes a dazzling display of fireworks. The one this year was on last night (Sat.August 1st). I must say though that the weather wasn`t good here in the north west of England. The concert is open air, so very open to the elements, with the stage in front, and the big lake to the left of the audience.

The theme this year it was the turn of the Halle Orchestra, based in Manchester to perform in front of what promised to be a sell out audience. Although I didn`t go last night, whenever I have been in the past these concerts have always delivered, and the grounds of Tatton park are an ideal setting to have a picnic while watching the show, and the firewaork display. I only hope the rainy weather didn`t spoil it this year.