Showing posts from March, 2010

Before & After with England's Gardens

Before: This area of a large garden of a historic house in the Preston Park area of Brighton has been transformed in a matter of days. Hedera helix (Ivy) had been on the rampage for a long time in this section towards the entrance of the garden. England's Gardens set about digging and weeding the area, clearing bags of leaves and removing Ivy.

After: The area has been cleared and weeded. The Narcissus (Daffodils) which had sprouted up for Spring should now be a lot more visible when they bloom, now that the Ivy has been cleared. Also revealed were some lovely ferns amid the ground cover as well as the decorative brick and slate pathway and border hidden by the dead leaves and Ivy. Today we were joined by a feathered friend who was investigating the scene following the clearance, clearly eager to find some tasty worms in the fresh soil we had uncovered!

Tulips for Instant Colour...

Try Tulipa 'Jan Reus' for instant hot colour in your garden...

According to Val Bourne of The Telegraphtulips should be planted after the end of October once temperatures fall. Her article continues however...

But if you missed your chance this year, there is another way to have tulips in the garden now: seek out ready-grown potfuls and sink them into the borders. They will do well (even in shade) and Beth Chatto has been using this system for years.

The most colourful tulips are the Triumphs - a group bred in Holland for the cut-flower trade. Excellent late-April varieties include the dark chrysanthemum crimson 'Jan Reus', the purple-veined white 'Shirley' and the beetroot-purple 'Negrita'.

Tulipa 'Shirley'

They come in a wide rainbow of colours, but a limited colour scheme probably works best in the garden. Add a few May-flowering tulips to follow on. Next year pot your own tulips between early November and late December. Place about nine tulip bu…

The Telegraph's Top 10 Spring Flowering Shrubs

Cercis chinensis 'Avondale' - Chinese Redbud

Courtesy of The Telegraph

Cercis chinensis 'Avondale’, a form of the Chinese redbud, makes a large shrub or small tree, with masses of purple-pink pea flowers on the bare shoots in late March and April. The leaves then unfurl; they are very big, heart-shaped, pale green in colour and turn yellow in autumn. This plant is hardy, happiest in full sun or partial shade, and likes a fertile, moist but well-drained soil.

Halesia carolina is one of the choicest of all spring shrubs (or small trees), having adorable, nodding, pure white snowdrop flowers in late spring, once the plant has a few years on the clock. These are ¾in long, and hang in clusters of three or five on short stalks. These flowers turn into 2in-long, pear-shaped fruit with four wings and a tail. When fully ripe, these are brown, chiming well with the leaves, which yellow in autumn. Halesias like a sheltered spot in sun or part shade in neutral or acid soil.

Chaenomeles x …

Magnificent Magnolias

The Magnolia season is upon us in the UK. Wakehurst Place in East Sussex is home to some magnificent magnolias, as seen in the picture above.

Courtesy of BBC Gardening, here are the basics on the resplendent Magnolia genus.

Common Name: Magnolia
Genus: Magnolia
Species: liliiflora
Cultivar: 'Nigra'
Skill Level: Experienced
Exposure: Full sun, Partial shade
Hardiness: Hardy
Soil type: Well-drained/light, Acidic
Height: 300cm
Spread: 240cm
Flowering period: April to June