In early spring, from March onwards, there's a pop of colour under the hedgerows, in gardens and on sunny banks. Spring flowers emerge, despite wind, rain, sleet and ice. It’s what they do. The harbingers of better weather will appear, come what may. They are suited to just about all conditions, with the exception of complete flooding, and will raise their merry little faces – providing some much-needed cheer.
Let's start with the Primula family. They are one of the nation's best-loved spring flowers and certainly deserve to be. But do you know the difference between primrose, cowslip, oxslip, primula and polyanthus?Read more
Health and wellbeing is important and plants can be our stress-busting friends
We all know that plants are good for us, but some are even better than others. Both indoors and out, there are plants that aid health and wellbeing. Indeed, the act of caring for plants also has a positive, stress busting effect on the soul.
What can you do about Japanese knotweed in your garden?
Who would have thought that the presence of a humble plant could affect house prices and sales? When it comes to Japanese knotweed, it seems that everyone fears this beast. But is its reputation well-deserved or are we over-reacting? Japanese knotweed. These are two words that strike fear into the hearts of homeowners!
Fill it with flowers!
There’s no shortage of blooms at this time of year, and with the RHS Chelsea Flower Show looming (commencing 21 May), focus is firmly on flowers in the garden during this wonderful season. But there are many people who look wistfully from the side-lines, wondering why their own gardens aren’t showing such splendour. So let’s take a look at the best flowering shrubs and perennials for a marvellous May. If you set yourself a target to plant one specimen each month, choosing something that flowers in that particular month, your garden would gradually fill with flowering interest throughout the year.Read more
Groundcover needn't be boring
Heuchera are the eye-candy of the low-level planting storey and these stunners have enjoyed a gradual rise in the popularity stakes over the last few years. There are now very few gardens that haven’t managed to find room for this colourful foliage plant. It’s not difficult to see why, because Heucheras are capable of providing year-round colour and low-level interest. (Meaning a spectacle close to the ground rather than only mildly exciting.)Read more
How could you not be excited by April and May in the garden...
when the earth beneath your feet is erupting into a growing frenzy? The garden is springing into glorious life! But as the spring-flowering bulbs give us their best burst of colour, there's something even better following behind. What are these masters of disguise, and which might you want to select for your own garden?Read more
The Hellebore season is almost here. At the dawn of the new year, these sturdy perennials begin to shine. Despite their fragile appearance, they can withstand just about anything that nature brings. Snow, ice, rain, they just don't really care. What will damage them is too much direct sunlight (hardly likely in January). Position them in shady places so they are protected during the hotter parts of the year. They also won't enjoy sitting in a permanent bog. But apart from that, they are dynamite!
Are garden plants a bit like people, perhaps? Many British folk seem to be obsessed by the weather and a multitude feel unable to contend with rain, gloomy skies, shade, or indeed, winter in general. Their inability to cope could be compared to the way that plants behave when they are placed within an alien environment. Not on the planet Mars, but in bright sunlight when they crave shade, for example. Let's look at what plants need - each one is different...Read more