Archive | Practical gardening

Houseplants and gardening indoors

There is good news for gardeners who miss their gardening fix when the winter weather prevents outside work. Indoor gardening with houseplants is back in fashion and some of the stalwart plants of our childhood homes are now right on trend instead of being “so last century”. You should be seeing an increase in the number […]

Autumn pruning to prevent winter damage

I am often asked what pruning should be done in autumn and the answer is “very little”.  The main aim of autumn pruning is to prevent damage to tall shrubs during winter storms and wind rock.  This falls into the category of Housekeeping pruning.  It applies to late flowering shrubs that have produced tall, whippy […]

Don’t be too tidy in the autumn garden

Providing shelter for overwintering wildlife: You will know that I am keen on encouraging wildlife in the garden and there is good news for anyone struggling to find time for all that autumn cutting and tidying. Leaving herbaceous perennials and grasses standing through the winter instead of cutting everything down to ground level provides great […]

Packing away summer bedding

By October it really is time to pack away your summer bedding and prepare a couple of pots of winter colour to sit beside your front door. But whereas summer planting schemes were once exclusively made up from half hardy annual plants that were simply composted in autumn, I have noticed in recent years a […]

Gorgeous Camellias

The first of my Camellias has just burst into flower and it looks like being a good year with all the Camellias that I have seen having plenty of fat flower buds.   Plants such as Camellia, Rhododendron, Azalea and Acers are ‘ericaceous’ and are often described as acid-loving plants.  But I garden on a […]

Soil Conditioning, what and why

We are usually still enjoying summer at least at the start of September but soon gardeners’ thoughts will turn to the autumn planting season.  Once air temperatures drop and we have some steady rain (theoretically after a warm, dry summer!) there are a few weeks when conditions are ideal for splitting, moving and planting new […]

Spring bulb aftercare

Just because the flowers are over it is important not to ignore your spring flowering bulbs if you want another great show of flowers next year.  Flowering early in the year takes more energy than the plant can produce from photosynthesis with short days and low light levels and the food stored in the bulb […]