Friday, 7 October 2016

Give yourself a garden surprise - with Spring bulbs


Anemone blanda
Now is the time to choose some spring bulbs to add splashes of colour to your garden from next March. Plant them now, forget all about them, and they will appear from nowhere in a few months to surprise and delight you when you are not expecting it.

Friday, 23 September 2016

Gardens to visit - Hidcote Manor - Great English Garden

Hidcote is renowned as a great English garden, but provides fine examples of not only traditional cottage garden and formal styles, but also  woodland and Mediterranean gardens. It blends a range of styles into a coherent whole and fits beautifully into its surroundings, yet occasionally transports you into another place entirely, using abundant planting and clever theming of individual enclosed garden rooms.

Saturday, 20 August 2016

Design your garden step by step with set pieces


 
Stone bird bath surrounded by geraniums and roses
Designing your garden can seem daunting, but you don't have to do it all at once. You can use set pieces as a step by step garden design. This is a great way of making your garden look good even if you don't want to spend the time or money it takes to design a whole garden.

Friday, 5 August 2016

Garden Design - Make your garden feel bigger by connecting it to its surroundings


A view across Bodnant Garden to the mountains beyond
Here is a simple way to make your garden seem bigger than it really is. This is used in large scale landscape designs to create long vistas and integrate large estates to the surrounding countryside, but is equally useful in making a small garden seem not quite so small.

Friday, 22 July 2016

Plant these 5 evening scented white flowers for fragrant summer nights in the garden

If you have a bit of your garden which faces west, it will make a great place to sit and watch the sun go down. If it's a patio then it will catch the late afternoon sun, and on a balmy summer night, the stones will absorb the summer heat and slowly release it after sunset, keeping you pleasantly warm late into the evening.
 

To enhance this evening atmosphere even further, you can fill a pot, bed or border with scented plants that release their fragrance  in the evening.

Friday, 15 July 2016

Simple tip using colour to add style to garden borders


Here is a simple idea to help add style to your garden borders. Take one colour and use different plants of that colour to create a bold effect by running this ribbon of colour through the border. This has a more coherent look than separate blocks of colour scattered throughout the bed.

Thursday, 30 June 2016

6 aromatic plants to surround your garden seats with scent

Scented pelargoniums in pots next to patio chairs
Do you dream of sitting watching the sun go down, on a terrace in the Mediterranean, in short sleeves with a cold drink in your hand? Well you can easily create that atmosphere (when the sun finally comes out) by surrounding yourself with scented foliage and aromatic herbs. Here are six aromatic plants you should have within reach of your favourite patio seat:

Thursday, 16 June 2016

Plan your garden and give yourself a view from your window

When you're planning your garden, it is worth thinking about what it will look like from the house. After all, you will probably look at it from that direction every day! Here are some tips on how to make the view of the garden from the house a good one.

Saturday, 11 June 2016

Garden Design - a simple, eye-catching effect with Allium bulbs

Alliums are a colourful, inexpensive and low maintenance spring flower that are well worth adding to your garden. £10 will buy between 3 and 20 bulbs depending on the variety.

Friday, 3 June 2016

Garden Design - Create your own classic formal garden - you only need two things!

If you enjoy the neatly clipped hedges and geometric shapes you see in the classic gardens and at many stately homes, then why not create a formal garden of your own at home? Whether it's your whole garden or a small part of it, it's really easy to do, and can be adapted to whatever size space you have. You only need 2 things.

Friday, 27 May 2016

How to make a children's sandpit a garden feature

Combining a children's sandpit with the rest of a garden design is a challenge. The easy way to do it is to have a self contained pit on the patio or the lawn. It can be moved about or packed away when not in use, but means it is simply a toy and not actually part of the garden.

I prefer it to be part of the garden, like a water feature or border is.

Thursday, 19 May 2016

Star Spring Plant - Azalea


There should be room in every garden for an azalea. The flowers completely cover the plant, usually blocking out the views of foliage altogether so that you see a pink (or yellow or red or mauve) mass, that really stands out at a time when many other plants are only just getting going. Most are evergreen too, so they look good all year long.

Saturday, 14 May 2016

Garden Design - Plant blocks of colour to give a small garden impact

You can pack a real punch even in a small garden by getting maximum impact from certain features. Pick one plant in your favourite colour and plant a block of it, closely packed, and you'll really grab people's attention.

Thursday, 5 May 2016

Garden Design - Make a secluded woodland garden for wildlife and children

You can give children somewhere to explore and wildlife somewhere to live, by creating a little piece of woodland in your garden, and you don't need as much space as you think. All you need is the right plants and some imagination.

Sunday, 24 April 2016

Don't let setbacks stop you creating your dream garden!

Every now and then, things go wrong. Here is proof that it will probably work out ok in the end! 

Have you ever mistakenly cut off more of a plant than you meant to, or forgotten to water something and discovered it a shrivelled up victim of your forgetfulness? Have you ever been a blameless bystander as the fates, the weather, your pets or your neighbours seemingly conspired to undo your hard work in the garden?

Sunday, 17 April 2016

RHS Flower Show Cardiff - Silver Balls

The RHS Cardiff Flower Show is the first chance of the year to pick up ideas from the show gardens, buy some of the more unusual plants from the specialist nurseries that exhibit there, and check out the latest garden ornaments, garden tools and gadgets.

Saturday, 16 April 2016

RHS Flower Show Cardiff - Scented Pelargoniums - Choose a flavour!


Pelargonium Orange Fizz

The RHS Flower Show Cardiff is a great chance to pick up amazing plants that don't appear in the local garden centre very often. I picked up some scented herbs which are both bizarre and wonderful.

Thursday, 31 March 2016

10 Shade Loving Plants for a Woodland Garden


Here are ten plants that love shade. They are ideal for planting under large trees where they will get dappled sunshine in summer, and in a woodland garden. 

Thursday, 17 March 2016

Star Spring Plant -Camellia


A sure sign that the worst of winter should be behind us is the glossy leaves of Camellia being embellished with its rich coloured blooms.

Tuesday, 1 March 2016

Garden Design - Make a great garden by planning a great garden!

Making a great garden takes some planning. This could mean a detailed design by a professional garden designer, or something more basic, but having some sort of plan makes a big difference. If you want to get the most out of your garden, then spend some time thinking about what you want, and how to get it.