Jewellery that springs from the sea

Regular blog readers will have come to realise that I am the only Growbag sister with really good horticultural taste. As it is with plants, so it is with jewellery. I go for understated, timeless class from ethical sources, so was delighted when we came across the work of Kate Lewis at RHS Wisley’s Contemporary Craft Fair. Kate collects her raw material as she walks her dog each morning on the beaches of the Gower Peninsula; seaglass, remnants of broken bottles whose sharp edges have been worn away and whose original colours have developed an opaque subtlety over the...

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Parrotia persica AGM – Persian Ironwood

I first saw Parrotia persica (a group of three) in the winter garden at Polesden Lacey and wanted one immediately: the sight of those deep crimson flowers erupting from bare branches was captivating. As with many flowers at this time of year you must get up close to appreciate their beauty, but then that is the enjoyment of being in the winter garden; it is a stroll of discovery of tiny details on a cold day, as opposed to a blast of unmissable colour in the heat of summer. The Persian ironwood is a hardy, deciduous, upwardly spreading tree...

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How to keep your festive houseplants happy! Tips for early January

Do you have flowering plants in the house this Christmas? They add a bit of glamour at this time of year, don’t you think? But how do you get poinsettias and amaryllis to stay alive, so they do the same next year? I’m well-known for not having much patience with houseplants, preferring to do my gardening out of doors, but most of them are not difficult to look after, if you follow these tips: A general rule first – practically all commonly-grown houseplants HATE standing permanently in water. Dunk the pot in a bucket of water almost up to its rim and...

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Growbags’ tips on what not to wear

Is your body garden-ready?  ‘Yes’ we can shout as one, because other than on Naked Gardening Day (a date for your diary – May 4 2019) our hobby requires multiple, stout layers, which, luckily, conceal a multitude of sins. But gardening garb does require a little forethought so here are our tips on what to wear and what to avoid for that essential post-Christmas gardening workout. *Firstly, don’t wear anything you care about, it WILL get frayed, torn and mud-stained. *Secondly, resign yourself to the fact that you are not going to look good (see our feature photo of Elaine...

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