Trees to try for winter cheer

Trees, trees, trees – a joy almost always, I think, but  I suspect that some of you who have big trees in your garden (perhaps inherited?) might not be so enthusiastic….?! Do be careful with your choice of garden tree – forest trees need a LOT of space, but boy, do they look dramatic in winter if they can stretch their arms wide. Some of we humans might be a little reluctant to stand naked in the open for the three coldest months of the year (although you’d be amazed at what you can persuade Caroline to do) but all...

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Dendrobium Berry Oda

Straight off, I’ll admit that I am not a fan of tender orchids, especially not the sort that are so popular in garden centres: so perfect they could be made of plastic, and the flowers so long lasting that they need dusting. However, several years ago when I was visiting one of my sisters, her dendrobium just happened to be in flower, and I was very taken with it. So, she eased out a rooted stem, I took it home, potted it up in orchid compost and it never looked back. Having spent all last weekend outside in the...

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Grow-How Tips for Early February

The earliest flowers are up, the frogs are starting to croak in our pond, and spring is almost sprung! It’s time to don a cosy jumper and scarf, and tidy up or move some shrubs, sow some beans and sweetpeas, and generally get everything shipshape for the big push next month. During our recent trip north of the border, I was able to persuade my sisters to do some of the hard work while I gave the orders! SPRING PRUNING February is a great time to be out there getting started on some early pruning. If a shrub flowers...

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What’s hot and what’s not in your garden 2019

So what will the gardening trends be in 2019? E and I have been in Scotland with Caroline this week which gave us all a chance to review some of the pundits predictions on what’s hot for 2019. Gardens resistant to climate extremes. We really do need to prepare for climate Armageddon, but we’re not sure what sort. Caroline took us to a lecture organised by the Royal Caledonian Horticultural Society at the Edinburgh Botanic Garden on the native plants of the ‘….stans’ – Kurdistan, Turkmenistan etc where temperatures can fluctuate between plus 40 and minus 40 (yes it was...

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