Growbags – easily seduced on dark winter nights

When the weather closes in, and the days are still short, keen gardeners still need their fix and will turn their attention to virtual gardening, browsing catalogues and planning what seeds and young plants they need to order for the year ahead. Garden companies are well aware of the vulnerable state of the human psyche during the dark days of February and time the production of their catalogues accordingly to dangle images of unnaturally luxuriant flowers and foliage under our noses. Their clever market research whizzkids will have analysed your previous purchasing preferences and ensure that the right fruit/veg/herbaceous/bedding selections...

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Braving the elements reaps sweet smell of success

I can’t believe my sisters sometimes….! When I proposed our next blog should be about winter scented shrubs there was palpable apathy from the pair of them: ‘nothing much smelling in my garden at the moment’, honestly – what lightweights! They are both missing out on one of the highlights of the gardening year. I love perambulating my garden in January, hands clasping a hot drink, visiting each of my winter beauties in turn and soaking up their delicious fragrance. Louise gets it – did you catch her plant profile of wintersweet, Chimonanthes ‘Luteus’ and she (unlike snowflakes C and E)...

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To plant, perchance to dream

  I have been in quarantine for a couple of weeks now with an impressively wheezy chest and have had to experience Christmas and New Year vicariously through E and C’s slightly competitive WhatsApp messages ‘We had 53 people to lunch on Christmas Day and danced till 2 am’ (E) ‘ it’s so hot here on Cyprus we spent Christmas Day on sun loungers round the pool’ (C) Grrrrrrr – they didn’t seem the least bit interested when I told them how handy my new Christmas hot water bottle cover had come in. During a bout of paracetamol fuelled...

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Looking back and so looking forward!

So here we are, we’ve reached Christmas again, and despite our very best efforts, our gardens are STILL not perfect…(for perfect look at Louise’s wonderful photo of her Great Plant this Month) so I think we should all turn joyfully to studying our gardens with a clear eye as to what ‘worked’ last year, and what didn’t. First and foremost, I MUST be more ruthless about plants that are not thriving – it’s appallingly easy for a soft-hearted gardener to end up with a patch full of Anates cataces, aka Lame Ducks, defiantly not actually dying, but limping on with...

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