Thursday, October 26, 2023

October is a new season!

October is the start of a new season in the garden. It’s a month when we see the start of the autumn colours, with plenty of late flowering plants providing an array of glorious hues. There is still plenty of time to harvest vegetables and pick fruit.

Time to plan

When you are planning for next year, we recommend that you take photos of your garden, to identify which areas could do with improvement. Gardens continuously change as they age and will benefit from regularly updating with new plants to keep them looking fresh. Photos also provide a reminder of where herbaceous plants are sited – these will die back in the winter so to prevent damage it’s important to know where they are when digging or hoeing your borders. Photos also provide a visual aide memoire for previously planted bulbs.


Autumn is the best time to plant as the soil is still warm from the summer and combined with the seasonal rain, the soil is perfect. As trees and deciduous shrubs have no new leaf growth plants don’t lose water through transpiration and the roots

are ready to grow and will be forming a good root system before next spring or summer. Use a good mulch of organic matter around the plant and some bonemeal, a slow-release fertiliser, that helps root establishment.

...and prune

Prune late flowering climbing roses by removing old stems, any damaged or crossing stems, cutting them back to a healthy leaf. Create buds in a neat framework by tying into a trellis or wires to protect them from winter winds.

Glorious shades of leaves

Towards the end of October we experience cooler nights and leaves turn shades of bright red, orange and yellow, plus the berries and fruits will provide extra colours and interest. Some highlights include Japanese Maples, which have the most vibrant colours after warm days, cold nights, and a little rain. Acers’ stunning leaves change through every shade of orange, red and yellow before falling. Pyracantha is a prickly evergreen shrub, grown freestanding or trained against a wall or fence and is also good in a mixed hedge. It produces red, orange and yellow berries which last well into winter.

October plants continue to delight

Crab Apple is one of the best sized trees for a smaller garden, with lovely spring blossom, and colourful fruit and leaves in autumn before they fall. Other highlights include Abelia, Caryopteris, Hardy Fuchsias, Ceratostigma, whilst berries and fruits on Callicarpa, Chaenomeles, Cotoneasters and Hypericum Miracle, all produce stunning autumnal shades and shapes. Fabulous herbaceous perennials at this time of year include Actaea, Japanese anemones, Asters, Penstemon and Rudbeckias. Continue to deadhead plants like Dahlias and they will reward you by flowering until the first frosts.

Recycle your leaves

As leaves fall rake them up and use them to make your own leaf mould. Store them in large bin bags or compost bins and within a year or two this will provide a rich organic compost that ultimately feeds the soil and then the plants.

Clear up fallen and diseased leaves under roses to help prevent black spot from over-wintering, as spores can bounce back onto the plants after winter rain. We recommend binning or burning these leaves.

Luscious lawns

Now is a really good time to aerate your lawn. Using a garden fork, make holes at least 3-4” / 8-10cm deep, to help prevent compaction and winter waterlogging. Rake away any thatch and repair any dead patches and straighten and repair lawn edges, bumps, and hollows. Your lawn will benefit now from an autumn lawn feed.

Time to turf and make your own compost

If you want an instant lawn, October is a good time to lay turf. Soil and weather conditions allow for good root establishment. This is also the time of year to create or buy a compost bin to utilise all the green waste generated by garden pruning and tidying. To make successful compost you need beneficial bacteria, moisture and natural ingredients including weeds, fallen leaves, lawn cuttings, soft hedge clippings, teabags, and potato peelings. You can also use shredded paper and cardboard, but avoid any diseased material, woody stems and perennial weeds. Within a year you should have a supply of organic compost ready to mulch your plant borders.


October is the month to plant spring cabbages and over-wintering onion sets and also to plant out garlic. In the greenhouse, once tomatoes have cleared, sow winter lettuce, baby spinach leaves, early carrots, corn salad and spring onions for out of season crops.

Colourful containers

Plant up containers using pansies, violas, cyclamen, heathers, perennial grasses, phormiums with colourful foliage or Nandinias and Leucothoes, or you could use evergreen shrubs. Try hellebores for dramatic spring colours and shapes and interplant these with spring bulbs to provide as much winter spring interest as possible. You can also plant up winter hanging baskets with pansies, violas, bulbs, grasses, cyclamen and coloured ivy cascading over the edges.

Plant now for spring colour

The season for planting spring flowering bulbs has started and can bring colour to your garden from January to May. Hyacinths provide beautiful winter flowers and a lovely fragrance. Prepared Hyacinth bulbs are planted in October and will flower for Christmas or try the sweetly scented Narcissus paperwhite.

Daffodils signal the arrival of spring

Daffodils are a favourite with most gardeners, producing bright flowers in every shade of yellow. Their arrival means that spring is almost here. They look superb in pots or containers, and they are ideal for naturalising in the garden giving years of colour.

The botanical name for daffodils is Narcissus, a name from Greek mythology, from a youth who fell in love with his own reflection in a pool.

This plant has a fascinating history and was introduced into gardens about 300 BC. It originated in areas of Europe, especially Spain and Portugal and North America and could be found in meadows and woodland. It was brought to Britain by the Romans, who believed it had medicinal properties and became increasingly popular after the 16th Century. By the 19th Century it was an important commercial crop resulting in thousands of different cultivars. When grown in tubs, our horticulturist has found that his daffodil bulbs are not dug up by squirrels or eaten by mice, unlike other bulbs!

Crocus also need to be planted now. These are available in a wide range of colours – white, yellow, orange, or purple. Crocus are native to Southern Europe, the Mediterranean and North Africa and are usually found in woodlands and meadows, so ideal to plant under deciduous trees, shrubs, or in clumps in the lawn.

Next month is the time to plant tulips, but we suggest you buy them earlier to get the best selection, as once they’re gone, we won’t be getting any more in stock.

Winter is approaching

Remember October can start with warm and pleasant weather, but by the end it can really feel like winter is on its way, so be prepared and make sure you have some horticultural fleece at the ready to provide protection for your tender plants.

Until next time, enjoy your garden!

Tuesday, September 12, 2023

September Hints & Tips

September is pleasantly warm enough to enjoy pottering in the garden, with the relentless heat of previous months usually behind us. The evenings arrive earlier and are slightly cooler, a sign of the changing conditions of autumn. There’s plenty to keep you active in all areas of the garden, with fruit to be harvested, bulbs to plant ready for the spring, seeds to save from spent flowers, and perennials to plant out in the borders.

Read our September Hints & Tips - now live at 

Tuesday, July 11, 2023

July – a time of peak flowering in the garden

Shrubs, herbaceous perennials, roses and sweet peas are looking fabulous and tubs of summer bedding and hanging baskets are in full bloom.

In the vegetable garden the first potatoes can be dug and broad beans, French beans, beetroots, early carrots and salad crops are ready to harvest. With the recent dry weather, onions and garlic have grown well and strawberries have produced lots of small fruit but are still delicious! Lettuce is a little more demanding though and has required daily watering.

July is a time to enjoy the garden rather than making any new major changes. Now that we have passed the longest day of the year the plants from the Northern Hemisphere have started to fade such as Delphiniums, Iris, Poppy and Lupins. These are replaced with plants originating nearer the equator like Dahlias, Rudbeckia, Heleniums, Echinacea, Crocosmia and Salvias giving colour and interest right through to the Autumn. There are also lots of variety of ornamental grasses to enjoy too with their interesting seed heads.


You may have spotted some gaps in the borders soil that is dry and hard and not suitable for cultivation. A great idea to overcome this is to plant up a container with some interesting summer plants such as bright yellow or orange crocosmia combined with blue Salvia. Why not add some dark-leaved Dahlia and ornamental grass for height and perhaps some trailing herbs cascading over the edge for further flower and foliage appeal? You can then stand the container in the gap for instant interest.

The summer so far has been hot and dry which is great for outdoor living but this can take its toll on our gardens. Your lawn may have turned dry and brown but don’t worry, it will soon recover when the rain returns. Even when it does rain though it is still a good idea to prioritise watering.

Concentrate on newly planted areas of the garden and use grass clippings as a mulch after watering to help seal in the moisture.  Be sure to check there are no grass seeds in the mix though as this will only add to weeding issues later on. Any organic matter such as garden compost, well-rotted manure and bags of soil improver can be used as a mulch to help retain moisture in the soil. Low growing, ground-cover plants can help prevent the heat of the sun from reaching the soil too.

Move pots and containers to a shadier spot to protect the roots and by placing them in groups of three this will also reduce the amount of heat exposure. Containers and pots require a good water at the base of the plant stem rather than a sprinkle over then top and you can also apply a thick layer of mulch to the surface of pots using horticulture grit or strulch (a mineralised straw product) to reduce water loss. The only down side to using a mulch is knowing when to water but you can test the moisture of the compost by using your finger. Don’t forget to dead head and feed pots and containers every 7 to 10 days too and have water buts ready to collect any rainfall.


During spells of hot weather, it is so important to provide a clean water source so that birds and animals can drink and bathe.  A pond is ideal but a shallow dish is also just as effective.  Always make sure there is easy access in and out of the water as small animals can drown. This can easily be done by placing a rock or large stick in the water to the side so that they can climb out easily if they fall in. You may have noticed bees around your pond or birdbath too. This is because they are collecting moisture to help them build nests. Lots of insects use this technique too so you will be helping so many species if water is provided.

July Plant Highlights

Hemerocallis or Day Lilies are an excellent plant for the garden with brilliant flowers in yellow, orange, reds, purple, lavender and pale pink. They are low maintenance and can tolerate drought and cold winters. This is because they are native to Asia and are thought to have been introduced by traders along the silk route. In 1753 they were given the botanic name of Hemerocallis by Carl Linnaeus, a Swedish naturalist. During the 19th century botanists, gardeners and growers began crossing two species to produce the thousands of hybrids we see today.

Rudbeckia was another plant that tolerated last year’s heatwave, the flowers feature a raised central disc in black or green-brown shades surrounded by bright yellow or orange petals giving rise to its common name of Blackeyes Suzie or Cone Flower. Rudbeckia is native to North American prairies and requires moist well-drained soil in full sun. When planting, enrich the soil with plenty of organic matter. Depending on the variety, Rudbeckia can be an annual, biannual or perennial with heights ranging from 50cms to 300cms.

Heleniums, like Rudbeckia are a member of the Asteraceae family also originating from America and apparently named after Helen of Troy. The daisy- like flowers are yellow, orange or copper red and it requires moisture retentive soil in full sun and is commonly known as Sneezewort.

Agapanthus is exotic looking with large, loose balls of dark blue, blue, bicoloured or white blooms on strong stems above grass-like foliage. Each year many new varieties are introduced. It is ideal for growing in containers as restricted root growth produces more flowers and it can be easily moved under cover for protection during Winter.  As a guide, the wider and larger the leaf growth and flower size the less hardy the plant compared to the Headbourne hybrids. If you are growing it in borders use well-drained soil in a sunny sheltered position.

Penstemons provide spikes or colourful trumpet-shaped flowers in a range of colours including cream, wine-red, purple and blue. They also flower all summer so are excellent value for money. It was traditionally thought of as a cottage garden plant and looks fantastic growing with ornamental grasses or exotic foliage plants. It requires well drained, fertile soil in a sunny sheltered position and if you take some cuttings, it is easy to root. Keep it somewhere sheltered over Winter to protect it from frosts as this can kill the plant.

Crocosmia - there are hundreds of cultivars and hybrids all descended from a handful of species of this plant, that is native to Southern and Eastern Africa where they were found growing in grassland and at the edge of forests. Originally, when introduced into Britain it was know as Montbretia, a plant often seen in Devon and Cornwall as a garden escape that has since out-competed native plants and become invasive causing environmental issues.

New introductions have produced more manageable sized Crocosmia hybrids and cultivars. The plant is clump–forming with long grassy leaves and twin rows of buds that open into sprays of flowers from yellows to orange. One variety, Emily McKenzie, has orange flowers with brownish throats. It grows best in fertile, well-drained soil in a sunny sheltered location amongst grasses or with other hot bright coloured plants.

Lavenders are a plant for all gardens whether a cottage garden, formal herb garden or modern themed flower bed. Lavender Hidcote with violet flowers is an excellent plant for a dwarf hedge and for edging paths or borders. The grey foliage and perfumed flowers are loved by bees and pollinators. Lavender has been grown in gardens since around 1265 having been introduced from the Mediterranean.

Other plants to fill the July garden with colour include Echinacea’s, hardy Fuchsia’s, Hypericum, roses, clematis, honeysuckle and summer flowering Jasmine.

Gardening Jobs

Prune old fashioned roses, shrub roses and ramblers after flowering. Dead head faded flowers except those grown from Autumn hips. Cut just above a healthy leaf about 3cms or 8cms below an old flower head once the last flush of flowers is over. Feed with either rose feed or general-purpose feed. Water in well or use a liquid tomato feed which is high on potash supporting the development of new flower buds.

Regularly dead head bedding plants and perennials and cut out the old flowered stems of perennials such a s lupins, delphiniums and poppies as they go over.  Watering and feeding may result in further flowering in late summer.

Fruit and Vegetables

As early crops finish, apply fertiliser and lightly fork over the soil. Use the space for sowing carrots, lettuce, spring cabbage, turnips, Kohl rabi, Chinese cabbage, pak choi, rocket and radish. Vegetables, especially salad vegetables, grow fast and it is important to keep crops well-watered. Water runner beans regularly at the base and spray the foliage as this helps to increase humidity. By watering well this will help to prevent beans from growing tough and stringy. Harvest raspberries, red currents, gooseberries and blueberries. Tidy strawberry plants and grow new plants from the runners.

Don’t forget to plant up some seed potatoes - veg patio planters or jute potato planting bags for new potatoes on Christmas Day, use special autumn potatoes, Maris Peer, Pentland Javelin and Charlotte.

These are just a few ideas from the plant team if you need more ideas or tips, we are only too happy to help. From all the plant team, we wish you a fantastic summer and enjoy your gardens.

Monday, July 3, 2023

July Hints and Tips

We never know quite what the weather will be like in July, so when the sun shines, take every opportunity to get out and enjoy your garden. Most plants are in full bloom now, and there’s plenty to do to keep things looking good, whether it’s watering plants in dry spells, deadheading faded flowers or keeping on top of the weeding. And don’t forget to take some time to simply sit and appreciate all the results of your hard work!

Tuesday, June 20, 2023

Gardening during the hot weather...

 As the weather really starts to hot up, don’t just drag your barbecues out, blow up the paddling pool and dust off the sun lounger. Although all we simply want to do is soak up the sun as soon as it arrives, it’s really worth taking some time to get your garden in shape for the summer months.

Make sure your garden looks gorgeous for the time of year when it really becomes an extension of our indoor living space – another amazingly colourful room full of life for the whole family to enjoy.

Here are some summer garden jobs that are really worth taking the time to get done, so you can give your outdoor space the best chance of looking fantastic this season:

Loving your lawn

A neatly mown lawn is a joy to behold in an English summer garden, so make sure yours is in tip-top condition. By now, hopefully, you’ve re-sown any poor patches, aerated it to encourage root growth and given it a good scratch with a wire rake to allow light and water to reach the soil. However, it’s also a good idea to remove the most common lawn weed Trifolium repens, the white-flowering clover. Pull them out individually by ripping out the stems, as this will hopefully avoid the plants getting established. Remember to not mow less than 1cm height off your grass – cutting it too short will give you a far less healthy-looking lawn.

Banishing weeds

Keeping weeds at bay can seem like the never-ending task. If you are given or buy any plants always check them over before you introduce them to your garden, especially woody plants that ground elder, bindweed or couch grass are attracted to. In the lead up to summer, you want your garden looking it’s the best right from the pathways and walkways to the lawn and borders. If you do find you’re losing the battle and have missed the moment to tackle weeds as you find them, you may wish to call in the cavalry with a specifically designed weed control product.

Clearing out the shed

Over a long winter, you tend to stockpile a lot of odd bits which usually results in a chaotic mess that is in desperate need of order. If you love your garden shed then this should be a priority. I usually find the best method of doing this is to follow these simple steps:

  • Remove everything from your shed.
  • Sort all items into groups of ‘keep’ and ‘don’t keep’.
  • Throw or give away everything in the ‘don’t keep’ group.
  • Think about what you have left in comparison to the size you shed, and be ruthless about what to keep if you still have too much.
  • Clean the inside of the empty shed.
  • Place the remaining items back in the shed in a sensible organised order.

Cleaning the summer essentials


Depending on the type of barbecue you have in your garden, it can vary in difficulty to clean and will certainly vary in how much it is affected by harsh winter conditions. If you have a masonry barbecue you will have very little to do, however, you may have to remove any rust that has built up in wet conditions. If you have stored your barbecue away for the winter in might just be a case of a little spring clean and dusting down before inviting the family and friends over for a feast.

Garden furniture

If you have outdoor sofas and other items then you will have to make sure they are pristine for all of your summertime fun. It is recommended to take your cushions off any outdoor seating during winter, but if you forgot this year there are great ways to clean them with little hassle.

Paint and treat the fence

During the winter months, there is likely to be detrimental conditions for your garden fence. Before summer comes it is a great idea to give your fence a revitalised look of colour and health. Use a treatment such as Creosote to give it the extra protection it needs from those hot sunny days.

This all said, summer is definitely the time of year to really kick back and indulge in what you really love doing in the garden whether that be cooking, playing, drawing, sunbathing… all of which is enhanced by the work you do to make it a special place to spend time. The long days of light offer us the chance to really pick our own preferred hour to garden, whether that be 7 am in the morning or 9 pm at night. Do it at a time when it permits you to prioritise what you enjoy the most.

Next year, think about maybe not going away during the summer months because for sure you’ll be missing the best your garden has to give.

Tuesday, April 18, 2023

Planting Vegetables in April

What vegetables to plant in April

April is a busy and productive month in your vegetable garden. Whatever your culinary tastes or skill level, there are plenty of vegetables to plant in April.

Sow indoors in pots with warmth (windowsill, greenhouse or conservatory will all work well):

  • Beans (for example runner beans or French beans)
  • Marrow
  • Courgette
  • Squash
  • Sweetcorn
  • Cucumbers
  • Aubergines
  • Celery
  • Celeriac
  • Globe artichokes

Sow outside directly into well-prepared soil (containers, beds and borders will all work, whether in a garden or on a balcony):

  • Beetroot
  • Brussels Sprouts
  • Cabbage
  • Carrots
  • Leeks
  • Lettuce
  • Onions
  • Garlic
  • Parsnips
  • Potatoes
  • Radishes
  • Shallots
  • Spinach
  • Swiss chard
  • Summer cauliflower
  • Radish
  • Peas

You should also chit and plant out second early potatoes at the beginning of the month to mid-April, whilst doing the same for maincrop potatoes from mid-April onwards.

What Vegetables to harvest in April

If you already have crops growing, or if you’re just interested to know what’s in season, the vegetables usually ready to harvest in April are:

  • Purple sprouting broccoli
  • Asparagus (when the spears are no more than 18cm tall)
  • Rhubarb
  • Radishes
  • Spring onion
  • Chard
  • Leeks
  • Kale
  • Spring cauliflowers & cabbages
  • Lettuce & rocket

Vegetable plant maintenance in April

  • As the weather can be still a little on the cold side, protect any early outdoor sowings with horticultural fleece or polythene. Do this until you’re sure temperatures will stay above around 5-7°C at night.
  • Support any pea plants – choose from sticks, mesh, green support or wire netting.
  • Begin preparing runner bean supports for planting out in June.
  • Try to thin out rows of seedlings where possible and as soon as they are big enough to be handled.
  • Keep any carrots covered with a very fine mesh or a horticultural fleece. Make sure the edges are buried to keep out carrot root fly.
  • Be aware of slugs and snails. Treat them if you’re already seeing the damage and put preventative measures in place before they can attack.

Wednesday, March 1, 2023

By the meteorological calendar, spring starts today!

By the meteorological calendar, spring starts today! And our our plant areas are beginning to fill with plenty of seasonal interest and colour.

Our March Hints and Tips are also now published!

In March, the days are noticeably longer, and it’s an opportunity to get out into the garden to enjoy some early spring sunshine. Frosts and sometimes windy weather mean that some tasks must wait, but there is optimism in the air with warmer weather and longer days ahead. As the weather gets warmer and plants start to wake up, so do pests and diseases, so it’s useful to make some early checks on the health of your garden.

Spring is here, and it’s time to get busy in the garden again.

Read Hints and Tips now by visiting 

Wednesday, February 22, 2023

The eagerly anticipated first cut of the season!

When it comes to the garden there is nothing better than a well-kept lawn to complement your planting. When you see a great lawn, if you’re always left wondering ‘why can’t my lawn be like that?’ read on….

The first mow of the season is vitally important and there are a few golden rules for getting the lawn of your dreams.

1. Preparation

Before you get started, make sure your lawnmower is in the best possible condition. Give it a thorough clean and replace any broken or worn parts. If your mower has metal blades ensure they’re sharp enough for the job and correctly adjusted.

2. Don’t cut too early

Once any maintenance has been done, you’re ready to get mowing. You should be looking to make the first cut around the beginning of March and for optimum results it is best to let the grass grow to between 4 and 5cm in length.

3. Don’t get too close

Many people have the misguided notion that if the grass is shaved off the lawn will look better and will not need mowing again for a longer period of time. In fact, cutting too closely only leads to quick deterioration of the sward and opens your lawn to invasion from weeds and moss. The ideal cutting height for most lawns is 2 to 2.5cm.

4. Avoid wet conditions

To get the best results take the ‘little and often’ approach to mowing, this will maintain the ideal length. You should also water and feed the grass when the weather is dry, and remember never to mow when the grass is wet – not that you’d want to – as this can severely damage the lawn.

5. Mix it up

Try to change direction every time you mow as continually going in one direction can have a detrimental effect. It is always best to remove the grass clippings from your lawnmower as often as possible. If you intend to compost, a useful tip is to save some newspaper and cardboard for use as layers – this will stop the grass rotting down into a soggy mess.

Wednesday, February 1, 2023

Fenruary Hints and Tips for the Garden

February is the last month of winter, and frequently the coldest. 

It’s the end of the dormant period for many plants, so the last opportunity to plant out perennials and fruit trees. 

Timing this is tricky, as the ground is sometimes too frozen to dig with a spade or garden fork. Even on days when it is too cold to work the soil, there is still time to finish pruning plants ready for them to start regrowing in spring.

Visit our monthly hints and tips now by visiting 

Thursday, January 5, 2023

January Hints and Tips for the Garden

January is the start of an exciting new year in the garden. The weather may be cold, but if you look, you can see the first signs of spring outdoors, with bulbs poking up out of the ground and the days growing ever so slightly longer. Indoors there are seeds to sow, and January is also an ideal month to plant bare-root shrubs and trees. It’s time to get ready for a great year of gardening.

Read all of our January Hints and Tips now on our website at

Monday, December 12, 2022

Frost damage

It's very cold out at the moment with many parts of the country covered in snow or severe ice and although many plants we grow in our gardens are tough as old boots, frost, cold weather and cold winds can be fatal to some plants. Typical frost- and cold-sensitive plants include most summer bedding plants and annual herbs, such as basil.

Temperatures below zero will always affect tender and cold-sensitive plants – and sometimes even hardy ones during prolonged periods of cold, or if they are grown in containers. Frost and excessive wetness at the roots can be a fatal combination.


New leaves are most prone to damage, which can cause complete dieback on tender plants or just severe leaf browning or blackening. Excessive severe cold can also kill the roots of plants – especially when growing in very wet or waterlogged soil or compost.

Damage occurs when the water in plant cells begins to freeze and expand – damaging the cell and rupturing the cell wall. These plants become limp, blackened and often turn brown or slightly translucent.

During particularly long spells of very cold weather, even hardy plants and evergreens can become damaged when the soil becomes frozen and their roots are unable to take up water.

Treatment and control

If your plants are damaged by frost, there is still a chance that they will survive and become healthy again. However, trying to avoid frost damage in the first place is advisable.

If frost has damaged your plants, then:

  • Cut back frost-affected stems to undamaged buds or growth points – this will encourage new growth.
  • In the spring, once the risk of frost has passed, feed your plants to promote healthy growth.
  • Smaller plants can be dug up and moved into a greenhouse or on a windowsill – often this will encourage a full recovery if the damage has not been too severe.

Try to avoid frost damage by protecting your plants when severe cold weather is forecasted:

  • When buying pots and containers for your patio, ensure they are frost proof to avoid cracking. These will benefit from additional insulation from fleece or bubble wrap.
  • Avoid planting tender plants in frost pockets – these are the areas that are lowest in your garden where cold air will descend.
  • Mulch soils with bark, manure or straw to stop it freezing, causing root damage and preventing water uptake.
  • Protect the crowns (central growing point) of ferns and palms with fleece or straw. Tie the leaves together to stop snow and rain freezing in these delicate growth points.
  • Plant out tender plants when all risk of frost is over at the end of May or beginning of June depending on location.
  • Improve drainage of soil to prevent waterlogging.
  • Don’t feed plants in winter, as soft new growth is more susceptible to frost damage.
  • Harden up slightly tender plants by feeding with sulphate of potash in early autumn.

Thursday, December 1, 2022

December Gardening Hints & Tips

Looking for jobs to do in the garden in December? 

As well as protecting plants from frost with insulation around, you could also use bubble wrap, which is ideal if you have any left over from Christmas presents. 

Hint - ask for new garden tools or a lawn mower! 

Don't forget to clear debris - this is vital to prevent slugs and snails from setting up home in those lovely warm and damp conditions.

So, what other gardening jobs should we be doing in December?

Our new December Hints & Tips is now available - please visit 

Wednesday, November 30, 2022

Festive House Plant Care Guide

How to care for Poinsettia

No Christmas home is complete without a Poinsettia (Euphorbia pulcherrina), with their colourful, brightly coloured bracts they add a festive feel to your home and make an ideal present.

• Cold conditions and draughts damage the foliage on these plants, so be careful where you position them in your home. For example, allowing the leaves to touch a cold window will cause leaf drop.

• To keep it blooming, the temperature should be a minimum of 13 °C -15°C and up to 18°C during the day.

• They like indirect sunlight, so near to a sunny window sill, free from draught, in a warm room is ideal.

• Water your poinsettia when the soil feels dry to touch or just pick up the pot, if it’s light, it will need watering.

• Do not let it sit in water in the saucer. Overwatering is the quickest way to kill your poinsettia.

How to care for Cyclamen

Indoor cyclamen flower profusely through the festive period. With showy blooms in shades of red, white and pink, they form an essential part of any Christmas display.

• Cyclamen are easy to grow with a little care and will flower for six to eight weeks.

• They are happy in cooler bright rooms.

• Keep away from direct sunlight.

• Water when the soil begins to feel dry and directly into the soil, avoiding direct contact with the leaves and stems.

• Deadhead regularly by tugging them away gently as this will prolong flowering.

How to care for Amaryllis

The word Amaryllis means ‘to sparkle’ and it certainly does that! Amaryllis are popular at Christmas due to the colourful blooms. It’s also a traditional gift for your loved ones and can even bloom on Christmas day.

• Amaryllis are best suited to indirect sunlight / part shade. Too much sunlight can burn the foliage, however not enough, may reduce the flowering period.

• It’s a tropical plant and loves a warm temperature of approx. 20C. Once the leaves and bud have emerged, you can move it somewhere cooler.

• When initially planting the bulb, water it thoroughly. After this water less often until the growth starts to appear. Keep the soil moist but not water logged.