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clearing overgrown land
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culpepper



Joined: 16 Dec 2004
Posts: 638
Location: Kent
PostPosted: Mon Dec 20, 04 7:20 am    Post subject:  Reply with quote    

The nightshade berries are about as big as a cherry stone and black.Flowers are white.Luckily we had flower books including the flower fairies books when the children were young so they knew not to touch fairly early on.They're both teens now and we dont have any little realtives who might wander down there. Too many head high nettles and brambles to make it inviting anyway.

deerstalker



Joined: 28 Oct 2004
Posts: 589

PostPosted: Mon Dec 20, 04 1:02 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

If you intend to destroy the nightshade, please keep some seeds for me. I am involved in a number of local conservation projects where belladonna used to grow.

Due to persecution the plant is now very rare around here indeed, and we need a source for reintroduction.

Treacodactyl
Downsizer Moderator


Joined: 28 Oct 2004
Posts: 25697
Location: Jumping on the bandwagon of opportunism
PostPosted: Mon Dec 20, 04 1:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Deerstalker wrote:
If you intend to destroy the nightshade, please keep some seeds for me. I am involved in a number of local conservation projects where belladonna used to grow.

Due to persecution the plant is now very rare around here indeed, and we need a source for reintroduction.


I bet you are trying to use it as make-up.

I certainly don't mean remove it, just for people to be careful with it if children who are not that aware of wild plants see it. It's a lovely plant but the berries can look nice but are very poisonous.

I have seen a few plants about in the last couple of years.

culpepper



Joined: 16 Dec 2004
Posts: 638
Location: Kent
PostPosted: Mon Dec 20, 04 7:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Deerstalker wrote:
If you intend to destroy the nightshade, please keep some seeds for me. I am involved in a number of local conservation projects where belladonna used to grow.

Due to persecution the plant is now very rare around here indeed, and we need a source for reintroduction.


Any idea when seeds are gatherable?
will send some on when they are

tahir



Joined: 28 Oct 2004
Posts: 44156
Location: Essex
PostPosted: Mon Dec 20, 04 7:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Look at that, signed up 4 days and a conservation volunteer already

deerstalker



Joined: 28 Oct 2004
Posts: 589

PostPosted: Thu Dec 23, 04 7:59 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

culpepper wrote:

Any idea when seeds are gatherable?
will send some on when they are


Atropa belladonna flowers from June to August, so it may well still have fruit.

If this is the case collect up as many of the fruit as you can and store them in a dry warm place until they can be posted.

PM me for my address, and I will of course, cover all your postage charges (wear gloves when picking ).

An interesting point is rabbits are immune to atropine and will eat the plant. It is said however, that the flesh from rabbits that have fed on belladonna has poisoned its consumer.

culpepper



Joined: 16 Dec 2004
Posts: 638
Location: Kent
PostPosted: Thu Dec 23, 04 7:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

well went down there yesterday and couldnt find any berries at all.We've had a few frosts So may all have been destroyed.
Will have to wait for the next lot.
If we dont find any in ours,Im sure my neighbour will let us look in hers as it is just as overgrown.
Im not sure if thet were white now as looking at pictures on the net, they are purple with a yellow centre which looks very familiar.
Thought it might be too late this year.

culpepper



Joined: 16 Dec 2004
Posts: 638
Location: Kent
PostPosted: Tue Jun 14, 05 5:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

We've been clearing away now for 3 weeks.Mostly me but OH and kids have been helping,now and again.
I chopped the brambles,nettles etc down with a grass hook and some shears and have been digging away to get the roots out .
Im mostly using a pick axe for the digging as im much more an arms person than a leg person.We've now got an area 15 by 25 dug over and will carry on till its done.
Cant find a single deadly nightshade plant though so doesnt look like I'll be able to save any berries after all.

cab



Joined: 01 Nov 2004
Posts: 32429

PostPosted: Tue Jun 14, 05 5:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

culpepper wrote:

Cant find a single deadly nightshade plant though so doesnt look like I'll be able to save any berries after all.


Hmmm. Don't be surprised if seedlings appear now you've disturbed the soil. It'll lie dormant for years then the seeds germinate and it's everywhere.

I've never seen a white flowered cultivar, all the ones I've seen have been purple. I've only ever seen the white ones in pictures.

culpepper



Joined: 16 Dec 2004
Posts: 638
Location: Kent
PostPosted: Tue Jun 14, 05 7:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

well I'll keep my eyes peeled incase any show up.Im using weed supressing sheet to cover the dug bits but theres plenty that isnt dug yet.
We did try weed killing the whole lot last year(did it twice) but although it did look a bit sorry for itself,it just recovered after a few weeks and was as overgrown as ever.

culpepper



Joined: 16 Dec 2004
Posts: 638
Location: Kent
PostPosted: Sat Jun 25, 05 7:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

heres how its looking so far...

The weeds and bramble were all over and up to the height of the white fence 6 weeks ago.
Im quite proud of my mud.
Ive got 2 rows of potatoes in which are just coming through too [/img]

Treacodactyl
Downsizer Moderator


Joined: 28 Oct 2004
Posts: 25697
Location: Jumping on the bandwagon of opportunism
PostPosted: Sat Jun 25, 05 7:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

You need to plant a few blackberries now and something to hide the fence.

Well done! If you are not going to use all the land right away a green manure should keep the weeds down and keep in the nutrients.

culpepper



Joined: 16 Dec 2004
Posts: 638
Location: Kent
PostPosted: Sat Jun 25, 05 9:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

By a green manure,do you mean to spread over it mulch style or planted ,Comfrey for instance.We have weed supressing sheets over most of the dug area (the black stuff in the pic) ,not sure how weed supressing it actually will prove to be but anything is better than just leaving it to go back to weed.We are away for 2 weeks next month so wont be able to dig up any bindweed I see peeping through where a bit of root got missed.
Ive no idea where one gets Comfrey and wether one buys it at plants or seed.

Treacodactyl
Downsizer Moderator


Joined: 28 Oct 2004
Posts: 25697
Location: Jumping on the bandwagon of opportunism
PostPosted: Sat Jun 25, 05 9:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

I mean sowing something all over the ground that will grow and cover the soil with small plants. When you're ready to use the ground you dig the green manure in and it rots adding organic matter to the soil. While it grows it stops weeds, stops nutrients being washed out and can even fix nitrogen depending on the plant.

For example, look at www.kingsseeds.com and go to shop, veg and then green manures.

culpepper



Joined: 16 Dec 2004
Posts: 638
Location: Kent
PostPosted: Sun Jun 26, 05 12:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Thats a very useful link

Didnt realise there was so much you could just dig in.

At present Im still clearing the rest ,of couch grass, bramble roots and bindweed.
My neighbour at the old house used to keep her veg plot going all year by always replacing the crop as she harvested

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