We've lost touch with nature. It impacts in quite serious ways. As more and more people live in towns and cities, our souls are crying out to connect with the things they need. How can we help ourselves?
How sustainable are you in your garden?
As part of nature, plants themselves are perfectly balanced. They grow organically, they bear fruit and seed and some of this is eaten by animals and humans. Eventually they die and return everything and more back to the soil. Plants in their natural surroundings are in harmony with nature. Plant matter which is farmed or grown for pleasure can eventually be composted and fully re-used. Even water that is used to help plants thrive is recyclable in terms of photosynthesis, evaporation and rain.
Are slugs and snails having a feast at your expense?
It’s summer time and slugfest has started! In these day of enlightenment (or an awakening of common sense), it would be encouraging to hope that most people have sealed their poisonous pots for good. But how do you stop slugs and snails (not to mention vine weevils and lily beetles) from decimating your patch of paradise?
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.
There are many common gardening mistakes that people make in their outdoor spaces. Do you know what they are?
Errors result in inconvenience; increased workload or even major problems later. As in general life, it’s a good idea to think before you act! Timely effort, planning and paying attention to detail is the way to go.
Avoid these gardening errors - your future will be both easier and more pleasurable.
For example, the lush, green carpet in the picture below is probably what you might hope for in a lawn and the first tip involves mowing grass:
Summer in the garden. What could be better… winter, perhaps?
The long days of summer bring a relaxed air of warmth that settles over homes like a drift of the most delicate silk organza. Outdoor life is woven into daily routine, charming all but the most ardent winter-type of personality. Is there such a thing? Indeed there is – in fact a surprisingly high number of people prefer the colder seasons. Love the brightness of summer? Some people can't bear it.
Passion flowers! What an alluring name. We’ve probably all seen them, with those radiating, coloured filaments circling a central, exotic arena.
The flowers of Passiflora have a 3-D design. Nature is a clever beast and this flower guides pollinators to the nectaries. Native to tropical America, pollinators include bats, hummingbirds, butterflies, bees and moths. Here in the UK, these flowering beauties have to rely on insects, but they still provide an amazing spectacle.Read more
Create a refuge from the heat with these perfect plants
There’s a lot of razzmatazz out in the garden during the gloriously long days of summer. But when temperatures soar, keeping cool suddenly feels more desirable. Plants are amazing beasts that have the ability to cool the air around them. This applies both indoors and out. Do you recognise the family of plants from which the unfurling greenery is emerging?
Everyone needs boundaries
Is there anything appealing about a standard, timber fence?
Close-boarded, featheredge, palisade, waney edged, overlap… a fence’s purpose is to dictate a boundary and to provide some sort of screening and security. It’s just about essential in every garden, so the utmost respect should be shown to fencing specialists!
Do these baby birds need your help?
It’s part of the summer scene: parents and babies outdoors enjoying the weather. Human babies and small children need to be supervised at all times, but if you’re an animal such as a bird, a rabbit, a fox or a deer fawn, you have nature as your guide. It’s entirely natural for bird babies to fledge, i.e. to leave their nest once they are fully feathered, then learn to fly and survive in the big open world. What they don’t usually need is human intervention. This is sometimes difficult. You find a fledgling in the garden, hopping around and looking vulnerable. It’s tempting to interfere.