Q. I wondered what was going on with my apple tree and my friend’s just told me that it has canker. What is that exactly and how can I stop this happening?
Apple canker is a disease caused by a fungus which attacks the bark of apples and some other trees causing a sunken area of dead bark and, eventually, death of the branch. Cankers can form from mid-spring and, once formed, are present all year. Cankers are round or oval areas of dead sunken bark often starting at a wound or a bud. Control it with a spray with the copper-containing fungicides Bordeaux mixture or Bayer Fruit and Vegetable Disease Control.
Q. I’ve just bought some Japanese foxglove plants and I’m absolutely hopeless at gardening which is why I always read your Questions and Answers section with great interest to pick up tips. Thank you. Anyway, my Japanese foxgloves - should I plant them in the greenhouse over winter or should I plant them straight in the garden?
A. You can’t be hopeless if you’ve gone out buying plants. You’re giving it a good go! It’s a good idea to keep them sheltered over winter. With all this rain they could have been flooded by now then you can nurture them until they ready to go in the ground for the best possible start.
Q. Just a quick little question. As the weather takes a turn for the worse with frost, etc, expected should I wait to plant spring bulbs or plant them now?
What I would suggest is get yourself some little pots and compost and put them in there (Pre-Plant Care) that way you can keep an eye on them once a week, little water every now and again. At least they start getting ready for the spring possible late spring.
I often plant bulbs up in planters or trough then I know where they are and don’t end up mowing over them as they start coming up and I can monitor them.