The greenhouse effect

A fully productive greenhouse is similar to having a family pet – it will need a bit of your attention every day! Despite the hard work, once you’ve reaped the rewards of tasting your own chili peppers, peaches or tomatoes and raised your own garden plants for a fraction of the price charged at the Read More

All about heathers

Heathers are incredible plants that offer real value for money, as they provide a splash of vibrant colour, more or less the year round and especially in autumn and winter. Currently, there are more than 500 heather varieties to choose from with light to dark green, silver, yellow, grey or purple evergreen leaves. Heathers long-lasting Read More

Gap-fillers for late borders

Now, is a precious time in the garden when you can reflect and write notes on all your trials and tribulations and enjoy remembering all of the seasonal surprises that just happened without any clever forward planning. It’s always a good idea to take photographs of your best plant associations, so that you can repeat Read More

Become a gold digger!

The lilac-purple and scented flowers of the beautiful autumn-blooming Crocus sativus produce vibrant red stigmas, which when removed are known as saffron, which is the most expensive spice in the world! It has been used for flavouring and colouring dishes since Roman times and today is used to flavour salty or sweet recipes, and for Read More

Decorate your garden for summer

As you walk into any garden, the first thing that should hit you at this time of year is colour. If it’s not then you need to give your flowerbeds a makeover. Choose seasonal blooms and paint structures and furniture to link all the elements together and create a seductive summer scene. You could start Read More

Enjoy your garden after dark

White flowers and silver leaves always look cool and sophisticated and not only shine in shade but sparkle by moonlight, so are good for sitting areas as the nights begin to draw in. In the sunshine many white or cream-coloured flowers seem dull and lifeless and act only as a background or accent for more colourful Read More

Fabulous ferns

Lush ferny foliage will bring low maintenance splendour to shade and when mass planted will allow you to make an otherwise drab area into a leafy, tranquil paradise where you can sit or stroll and unwind from the tensions of everyday life. The Victorians were mad for ferns, growing them in Wardian cases in their Read More

Hydrangeas – masters of chemistry

Lacecaps and mopheads, cultivars of Hydrangea macrophylla, also known as Big Leaf Hydrangeas, are popular shrubs that have been around for decades and over the years become stalwarts of British summer gardens. Even bright summer bedding plants can’t compete with the eye-catching neon blue or pink flowers of the Mopheads pom-pom like flower heads. These giant Read More

Loosen up with lavender

I’m sure that when the Romans packed their favourite deodorant, sprigs of lavender, in their toilet bags before they crossed the stormy seas to invade Britain they wouldn’t have thought that almost 16 centuries later lavender be one of our favourite garden plants. Lavender’s unforgettable perfume pops up in all kinds of places from furniture Read More

Tickled pink

Pinks or dianthus are not only one of Britain’s favourite plants but highly collectable, producing some of the best, long lasting blooms in the garden, which are also prized for their delicious spicy clove-like fragrance. Resembling a mini florist carnation, easy-care dianthus, which we call ‘pinks’ because the serrated edges to the petals look as Read More