How Autumnal are your bloomers?

Do you remember waiting to be picked up from school?  Most parents would be there at the normal time, then all the ‘late parents’ would sweep in, leaving you still standing there until finally, finally, just as you were contemplating walking the eight miles home, yours would nonchalantly roll up wondering what all the fuss was about. There are plants like this, that keep you hanging on until almost all hope has gone. And I am not talking here about those that have started flowering in mid summer and are still desperately clinging on trying to prove they still have

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Vitis vinifera ‘Brant’

I have come to love autumn more as I get older; and for a gardener, extending the season through October and into November, it helps to reduce that dreaded void until January when the first snowdrops, hellebore flowers and other excitements emerge. Although it is essentially a grape vine, the primary point of growing Vitis ‘Brant’ is for its amazing and vibrant autumn colours which are all shades of deep crimson, red, purple, orange and yellow with green veins running through. If you like your grapes small, sweetish and with seeds, then these are an added bonus, and they are

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Growbags advice: Invest in a hedge fund

Yes we’re on hedges this week. Not only is it coming on the perfect time of the year to plant them, but also they’re in the news because apparently they ‘suck up’ a good deal more pollution than trees in our cities. I like this no-nonsense approach to their role. It chimes with our attitude to hedges in Scotland. We generally grow them for one purpose – wind protection. And don’t imagine I’m talking about the scented, excitingly bird-nest laden mixed hedging of our West Sussex childhood (well Laura and I found the birds’ nests exciting – Elaine had her nose

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