Wednesday, 30 March 2016

Front yard - landscaping with bricks

Landscaping of a front yard in Reading


Identified problems:


  • Lawn too high and growing into the pathways, pavements. Soil has built up over the years.

  • No proper border / edging between rose beds and lawn

  • Lawn difficult to mow / maintain.

What"s been done:


  • Removed old turf and excess soil and levelled all the area, returfed.

  • Edged all flower beds and tree with bricks

  • Cutting a lawn is now much easier thanks to all the edging





Front yard - landscaping with bricks

Tuesday, 15 March 2016

Weeds as soil type indicator

Weeds can be a good soil indicator


In this article I will provide some information about how to determine type of soil in your gardens.

It’s based on weeds observation. Some weeds like plants like certain conditions.. by observing carefully what weeds grow in your garden you can then assess what “good plants” would thrive in this spot..



Observing the most prevalent weeds can indicate if soil is:


  • acidic

  • alkaline

  • healthy and balanced

  • depleted of certain nutrients

  • poor draining soils

  • sandy soils – poorly retaining moisture

Some points you have to take into consideration:

– You have to observe several the most prevailing weeds

– Pay attention to healthy weeds. You might find a certain weeds growing in many places, but in some of them the same weed will be healthy and in some others not so much ..


Some plants are excellent soil indicators like hydrangeas or cornflowers ( Centaurea cyanus )

Some grow very well in most soils like: purple nettle ( Lamium purpureum ) and Shepherd’s purse ( Capsella bursapastoris )


Today I would like to concentrate on weeds that prevail in acidic soils and these are:


  • Eastern Bracken ( Pteridium aquifolium )

  • Buggenum buttercup ( Ranunculus spp. )

  • Chamomile-German ( Chamomilla pecutita )

  • Curly Dock ( Rumex crispus )

  • English Daisy ( Bellis perennis )

  • Ox-Eye Daisy ( Chrysanthemum leucanthemum )

  • Dandelion ( Taraxacum officinale )

  • Hawkweeds ( Hieracium aurantiacum )

  • Hawkweeds ( Hieracium pratense )

  • Knapweeds ( Centaurea species)

  • Lady’s-Thumb ( Polygonum persicaria )

  • Mayweed ( Arthemis cotula )

  • Mosses ( Musci class )

  • Common Mullein ( Verbascum thapsis )

  • Nettles ( Urtica dioica )

  • Wild Pansy ( Viola sp. )

  • Pineapple Weed ( Matricria matricariodes )

  • Pinks ( Dianthus sp. )

  • Plantain ( Plantago major )

  • Prostrate Knotweed ( Poly-aviculare )

  • Wild Radish ( Bapranus raphanistrum )

  • Rough Cinquefoil ( Potentilla monspeliensis )

  • Sheep Sorrel ( Rumex acetosella )

  • Silvery Cinquefoil ( Potentilla argentea )

  • Sow Thistle ( Sonchus species )

  • Corn Spurry ( Spergula arvensis )

  • Wild Strawberries ( Fragaria species )

Plants that grow well in an acidic soil are amongst others: azaleas, hydrangeas, rhododendrons, camellias

And fruit and vegetables like: rhubarb, potatoes, shallots, sweet potatoes, endive and watermelons, blueberries



Weeds as soil type indicator