If you want to grow sweet peas in your allotment or cut flower patch, training them straight upwards is preferable to a triangular obelisk. You'll get straighter stems and better quality flowers for display. Here I show how to build an easy string cordon on a cane frame.
I’ve got a renewed attraction to daffodils, or to use their latin name - narcissi. It’s like cupid’s bow has hit me and inflamed my narcissus desire. That’s my love of daffodils, you understand, not myself. Read on to find out why.
My gardening week - six on saturday - 07.04.18 This week I was thankful for forsythia, showing daffodils, admiring Camellia and Pleione, making homes for more alpines and bringing an old cold frame into service.
Most of my novice gardener friends assume dahlias are beyond their skill. Maybe the mesmerising petal formations and dazzling colour variations confuse dahlia debutantes into thinking that they are hard to grow. They are not. Coming in a variety of colours wider than Jackson Pollock's palette, there is a dahlia out there for everyone. There is nothing more stunning in the garden than a dahlia laden with flowers and buds and nothing more beautiful in the autumn home than a tastefully combined or even a brash clash in a mixed arrangement.
A week in the cold - Six on saturday. This week I have been admiring Cyclamen cuom, hellebores, flowering quince and the new leaf on my Monstera deliciosa, whilst tracking animals in the snow and planting my show bench sweet peas (again).
Snowdrops are simple tough plants yet delicately beautiful. A pure white snowdrop finds its perfect foil in the a green of a lawn. So often snowdrops are contained in flowerbeds or tucked away under hedges and trees, or the far reaches of a lawn. I wanted to bring them into the spotlight. Now, from late January, my car headlights pick out mini pricks of bright white as I come up the drive in the early evening. By day the snowdrops soften the edge of the lawn, the green sheet broken by a pretty white filigree.
A bewitching winter arrangement - This arrangement of witch hazel (hamemelis) with multi-headed scented daffodils is a perfect representation of the winter garden, in a glazed ceramic jug. It was used as a table decoration for a winter wedding. The arrangement gives a citrus splash of yellow and orange, the bright colours tempered with the greys and sage of both budded and lichen-coated twigs.
Picked up at a garden centre, or better still delivered to your door, plug plants give you more time in the garden and less shopping around for the variety you desire. Many plants are available as plugs; annuals for your pots and window boxes, flowers for cutting, wildflowers and off course vegetable plants. They are great for gaining confidence if you’re a novice gardener and they allow you to try a wider range of plants than you can grow from seed especillay if space and time are limited. Only growing from seed offers you a greater range to try.
Twiggy plants provide interesting shapes for home decoration and make great additions to any garden. Compared to the bountiful spring and summer months my garden offers slimmer pickings for winter home decoration so I’m always looking plants to grow that provide impact when artfully displayed with indoor bulbs or shop-bought flowers. I really value two twiggy plants in particular - Twisted Willow and Hazel. They earn their keep as garden specimens in any sized garden and are versatile as home decoration.