Slug-proof plants and winter jasmine: Grow-How tips for late February

The named storms have been coursing through the UK, but spring is on its way regardless and there are jobs to do, like pruning winter-flowering jasmine, choosing some slug-proof plants, and dividing snowdrops…… Jazzing up Jasmine It’s usually a cinch to grow Jasminum nudiflorum, and it’s a bright and pretty thing to see when covered in its starry yellow flowers in spells through the winter. But it can become horribly straggly if it’s left to its own devices with masses of twiggy bare stems and dead branches. The thing to remember is that it flowers on the previous year’s...

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Feeding Early Bees and Prepping Veg Beds – Growhow Tips for February

Are your fingers itching, as mine are, to get going in the garden? While we are waiting for the busy-ness of March to begin, how about helping the early insects, beautifying garden trees or preparing the veg beds for the coming season……. Catering for Critters Unexpectedly mild winter weather in the south has been worryingly confusing birds and insects who are waking up before their customary food-sources are available, so we as gardeners ought to be aware of how we can help out these early-stirrers. It sounds odd, but bees are apparently more likely to starve in a mild...

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Battle lines are drawn over snowdrops

  If snowdrops flowered in midsummer we would probably  barely notice their presence. We might even find them a nuisance the way they clump up so quickly and leave behind a great mound of boring foliage which must be religiously left to feed the cursed little bulbils for next year. I can almost feel myself reaching for the Roundup. Louise’s Great Plant this Month shows a far more attractive winter flowering star. But snowdrops have the immense good sense to flower at a time when we are all sick of cold cheerless days of frost, when their promise of better things...

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