Growbags’ Chelsea Choice #1 – Hartley Botanic

Well I’ll definitely be going to see the folk at Hartley Botanic when we go to Chelsea Flower Show this week, to tell this Peak District-based firm how much I’ve enjoyed being their customer this last year. They make glasshouses of every shape and size, and their Victorian range is to die for, in my book.  I wanted a glasshouse to attach to my prospective home in the Highlands. There were some gorgeous options but many were too expensive for me (my sister Laura’s very fancy glasshouse is what made me yearn to follow suit). Hartley Botanic’s Victorian Lodge...

Continue reading

Grow-How Tips for Mid-May

Here we are, full-on Chelsea season and a heap of gardening jobs clamouring for your attention!  Let’s have a go at bedding plant cuttings, successional sowing and putting up greenhouse shading, amongst other things: EXTENDING THE BEDDING  I expect you’ve bought your summer bedding – fuschias, pelargoniums, dahlias, chrysanths, Surfinia petunias, osteospermums, busy Lizzies, verbenas, argyranthemums, penstemons, salvias, plectranthus……..and are poised, ready to plant these into your pots and borders. But did you know that you can take shoots from them right now, to grow into lots more plants that will flower towards the end of the summer?  In a nutshell,...

Continue reading

Taking on a new garden – the dos and don’ts

Moving house and taking on a new garden is a big adventure but there are a few pitfalls to be aware of, so we three trusty old campaigners are here with some advice on how to avoid them. Don’t be in too much of a hurry,when you inherit a ‘new‘ garden. Give the whole space time to show what it’s got – evening sunshine perhaps, or a corner of snakeshead fritillaries, or ground elder……? Imagine the joy of moving in during September and then finding come spring, that your predecessor had planted daffs to spell out a deliciously rude...

Continue reading

Thermopsis lanceolata

On bank holiday Monday a neighbour asked me to take a look at a plant in her garden that wasn’t thriving (a seven year old Euphorbia characias… time to take it out!), and while I was there, she pointed out her Thermopsis montana and exclaimed how much she loved it but in the same breath, what an absolute thug it was, even invading her lawn! I had to agree with her, although it is by no means number one on the nuisance list. I was therefore very happy indeed to be able to introduce her to its close relative and...

Continue reading