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Growbags on tour

When Caroline said that in a fit of madness, she had booked the 3growbags to give a talk at the Royal Botanic Gardens in Edinburgh, my first thought was a calm and thoughtful ‘WHAT!!?!’ I was overwhelmed with questions – ‘What will we talk about? Who will come? Would we master Powerpoint? Would Caroline behave herself?’ And, most relevant of all, ‘What happens if I curl up in a terrified heap muttering Latin plant names, and dribbling a little?’ But then Caroline, who is also our grimly bossy editor, said I could tell people about the creation of my...

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Darmera peltata AGM – Umbrella plant

Now, I realise the photograph of my chosen plant this week may not be everyone’s idea of a horticultural gem, but with each year that passes I become more fascinated with the seasonal change that is autumn. There is an allure beyond the beauty of colour; gentle decay can also be a fascinating, eye catching process and the umbrella plant illustrates this perfectly. Darmera peltata has a long season of interest. It is a vigorous, hardy, herbaceous perennial (to about 1m.) which is happiest in damp or boggy soil, preferably on the edge of a pond. And it is...

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Winter pots – Growhow tips for early November

Brrrr! It can be hard to feel keen about wading into the garden in November– too much cold, too much wind and rain or worse…….but there are still jobs to do including some cleaning and tidying, planting a pot for winter colour, refreshing the rhubarb patch…… A GOOD WASH AND BRUSH-UP Now the main season of busy garden activity is past, it’s a good time to address sections of your garden space other than your plant borders. Have a long critical look at paved and patio-areas as well as any decking. Brush and scrub away any dirt and grime that...

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10 evergreens to rescue your garden

Help! Our gardens have descended into a soggy mess and I can’t be the only one wandering around dismal piles of rain-sodden vegetation wondering where it all went wrong. It’s now that evergreens in your garden can come to the rescue. Like the bowls of cheese-‘n-onion crisps that you don’t notice at a buffet till all the chilli prawn vol-au-vents have gone, they suddenly start to matter. But let’s be a little selective. There seem to be dozens of small conifers, for instance, that just….sit there. All year. Garden gnomes, frankly, have more life about them. No, no, I like my...

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