Buy a pink plant for Breast Cancer!

Virtually all of us know someone who has been affected by breast cancer, so this week we are going pink in support of Breast Cancer Awareness Day on Friday 19 October and suggesting some pink additions to your garden that you could purchase now, along with a donation to Cancer Research. And actually it is surprisingly easy to find pink flowers still glowing in the middle of October. Nerines are the ultimate in-your-face, strutting their stuff,  bubble gum pink autumn flowering bulb, and could easily be adopted as the very emblem of the Breast Cancer Awareness Campaign. The most...

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Growbags shout Hip Hoorah!

When I proposed that we write about different rose hips for this week’s blog Caroline’s response was ‘Oh, is there more than one sort then?  Honestly I ask you, how can someone who can spot a ‘Happy Hour’ sign half a mile away be so unobservant about the natural world? Rose hips are one of autumn’s most attractive phenomena, and lend that all important ‘dash of red’ that artists have long known will give a lift to otherwise soft and fuzzy scenes, and there is a whole community of different ones, mainly arising from species roses, which are the...

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Ageing gracefully the Growbag way

I am still smarting from a passing comment a stranger who thought Caroline and I looked similar, ‘were we sisters, or perhaps mother and daughter?’ The cheek of it! It must have been Caroline’s  pink leggings and silver trainers compared to my more tasteful attire that prompted this observation (think Joan Collins versus Judi Dench) but it set me thinking about how some humans and plants age more gracefully than others.  The wild clematis, Clematis vitalba, which thrives on the chalk soils of the South Downs (and is known locally as ‘travellers joy’ ) is one such. Small, creamy, nodding...

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The Growbags September pick-me-ups

Still slightly reeling from a trip north of the border to Caroline and her fun-loving Highland friends – just how many parties can you fit into three days? and why do they hold a Harley-Davidson reunion rally in the Cairngorms over August Bank Holiday? (it’s called ‘Thunder in the Glens’!). I definitely needed a restorative perambulation round my own garden this morning which revealed some plants which, unlike me, seemed to be peaking right now, and provided just the tonic I needed: Pokeweed, Phytolacca americana, is a bit of a marmite plant but I love marmite so I was delighted to...

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