Gardens to visit – The Beth Chatto Gardens, Essex

In times of drought it’s pretty much inevitable that the gardening press turns its spotlight on the Beth Chatto Gardens, as was the case this summer. This garden was created back in the 1960s and its owners, Beth and Andrew Chatto focused entirely on using plants which they knew could thrive in the different conditions […]

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A guide to watering your garden efficiently

As we here in the UK suffer (or enjoy, depending on your outlook) a prolonged period of drought and unusually high temperatures, the gardeners amongst us have been praying for rain to keep our plants alive.  Our climate definitely seems to be changing, becoming more extreme with periods of both very wet and very dry […]

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5 essential … plants for winter interest

In the depths of winter plants which provide structure, colour and fragrance in a garden are especially welcome. Here are a few easy plants which will offer much, if not all, of that. It isn’t just leaves and flowers that add colour to the garden – stems can do it too and those of shrubby […]

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5 essential … plants for a relaxed country look

As much of my work is in country gardens around Hampshire, Surrey & Sussex, I often need to find ways to blend the plants inside the garden with those in the wider landscape beyond the garden boundaries. There are a number of plants which I use for that purpose, and also where the planting needs […]

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5 essential… plants for birds over winter

Winter is a hard time for garden birds.  They need to eat a lot in order to keep warm and survive the cold nights, but falling temperatures make their regular food supplies scarce.  Putting up feeders is one solution, but many garden plants double-up as life-saving food resources for garden birds and no one has […]

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5 essential … plants for winter seedheads

Even in death plants with interesting seed heads that stand well over autumn and winter manage to look strikingly beautiful especially on those rare but magical early mornings when they are coated in hoare frost and sparkle in the sun.  Not only do they look good, but their seeds provide a valuable source of food […]

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Fabulous plants for December

Who said winter is a boring time in the garden?!  There are lots of great plants which provide visual interest at this time of year, and here is just a small selection. Ophiopogon planiscapus ‘Nigrescens’ Also known variously as ‘Black Dragon’, ‘Ebony Knight’, or ‘Arabicus’, this lilyturf is an extraordinary looking plant with arching purple-green […]

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Jobs for the garden in October

It’s time to start thinking about clearing your garden and preparing for winter.  Here are a number of jobs you can be doing this month: If you have heavy or wet soil, carry out any digging now before the ground gets too waterlogged. Rake up dead leaves to make leaf mould (put damp leaves into […]

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Fabulous plants for May

This is a really exciting time of year as new plants start to emerge and gardens really come alive.  Every day seems to bring something new to admire.  These are just some of the plants I really recommend for flowers at this time of year. Omphalodes cappadocica ‘Cherry Ingram’ It may be a bit of […]

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