On Line Magazine:
Future Elements

June 2018

Links to This Month's Articles

Home Page Photo: Astrantia (masterwort)
Roses: Growing In Containers
Time To Sow Biennials
Strictly For The Birds
Trim Box Bushes And Hedges
RHS Wisley: Plant Society Show
Miniature Vegetables
Getting The Boot!
Farmers Almanac

Home Page Photo: Astrantia

Astrantia (masterwort) always flowers lavishly in June
as well as a little in September. An excellent garden plant
and cut flower, dried as well as fresh.

Loves dappled shade and cool position as the oriental hellebore
and they make good partners.

Always deadhead astrantia as the flowers age badly
and inferior seedlings can be a problem.

Link to RHS: Horticultural advice Astrantia 'Claret'.

Roses: Growing In Containers

To keep container roses healthy and beautiful:
Locate to achieve at least 6 hours of sunlight.
Regularly water when it’s been dry.
Apply a rose fertiliser in the spring
In winter months take into the greenhouse or
give protection with jute or bubble wrap.

Link to RHS: Roses: growing in containers.

Time To Sow Biennials

Sow now and the plants develop though summer and autumn,
to achieve substantial plants by winter,
to get them off to a flying start in early spring,
for a strong summer display.

Most germinate within 10 days and can be sown
direct into the soil or seed trays.

Link to RHS: 10 of the best biennials.


Reversion is when a cultivar known for a particular leaf shape,
colour, or other striking characteristic ‘reverts’ back
to a different form found in the plant’s parentage.

Reversion most commonly affects variegated plants, shrubs and trees.

Link to RHS: Advice and guidance.

Strictly For The Birds

One for sorrow, two for mirth,
Three for a wedding, four for a birth.
Five for silver, six for gold,
Seven is a tale that has never been told.
(Number of magpies seen on a particular occasion)

A bird in the hand, is worth two in the bush.
A bird never flew on one wing.
There are no birds in last years nest.

If the partridge, had a woodcock's thigh,
it would be the best bird, that ever did fly.

The robin and wren are God's cock and hen;
the martin and swallow are God's mate and marrow.

A bird does not sing because it has an answer.
It sings because it has a song.

A robin redbreast in a cage, puts all heaven in a rage.

Trim Box Bushes And Hedges

Last chance, traditionally Derby Day 2nd June,
to cut back your box bushes or hedges.

Topiary shapes can be tricky to cut
but with the help of special topiary shears
it can get a lot easier.

Old neglected plants can repond well to hard pruning
cutting back to 15-30 cm (6-12inchs) off the ground level.

Box can be propogated by treating trimmings as cuttings.
Pot up and put in a cold frame or heated propagator.

Link to RHS: horticultural advice on box.

RHS Wisley: Plant Society Show

This event held over the weekend of 16th = 17th June
features over 20 different Plant Societies including
delphiniums, clematis, sweet peas, iris and dahlia
as well as alpines, fruit and vegetables,
hosta, carnivorous, bonsai and cactus.

Enjoy lovely displays of colourful and unusual plants,
chat to friendly experts for help and advice,
and purchase unusual plants and seeds.

Link to RHS: for full details.

Miniature Vegetables

minature veg
Miniature vegetables are a latest trend in vegetable gardening.
They are cheap and fun to grow in your garden
and the results can be quite charming and delicious.

They are ideal for the small garden, window box or containers
and also do not shade out other vegetable plants.

Seeds are available both on-line and in most gardening outlets
and can be sown consecutively through the summer months.

Link to RHS: for advice and guidance.

Getting The Boot!

old boots
Got a few left over bedding plants?
Add some fun to your garden or balcony,
plant up a pair of old Wellington's,
walking boots or trainers.

First drill out adequate drainage holes,
add a thin layer of gravel,
fill with general potting compost,
mixed with slow release fertiliser,
plant up, water and enjoy visitors reactions.

Farmers Almanac

Make hay while the sun shines.

A load of hay in June is worth two in July.
(Young hay has higher nutriment)

A calm June puts the farmer in tune.

Barnaby bright, Barnaby bright,
the longest day and the shortest night.
(St. Barnabas' Day: 11th June.
Thought in the middle ages to be the longest day).

There are more bad farmers than bad farms.

A bull should be not only be one of a good sort,
but also a good sort of bull.

July 2018

Links to This Month's Articles

Home Page Photo: Hydrangea 'Annabelle'
Weed Control
Cactus and Succulents
Cut Roses
Spinach Makes You Strong?
Bolting in Vegetables
The Deckchair
Water Works
Gorse - Furze - Ulex
Hanging Baskets

Home Page Photo: Hydrangea

Hydrangea arborescens tolerate cold winters and dry summers,
so if you've failed with hydrangeas in the past, try this one.

'Annabelle' produces a mass of large white flower heads in July
and richly deserves the RHS Award of Garden Merit.

Enjoy the winter seed heads, by planting in an open position
to catch the frost and glimmer in the light.

Prune very lightly in spring, do not cut down hard.
Just tip the stems back to the highest shooting bud.

Link to RHS horticultural advice: Hydrangea.

Weed Control

pulling weeds
Weeds are a constant trouble for the gardener
There are a number of on line sites offering good advice.
Use this link for: Six tips for effective control.
Use this link for: RHS video weed control.
Use this link for: Notcutts Tips and Tricks.

Cactus and Succulents

The British Cactus and Succulent Society website
contains some very useful information sheets.

Titles include: Composts and Repotting, Pests and Diseases,
Propagation, Seed Raising, Growing Year, Where to Grow.

Use this direct link to access.

Cut Roses

Cut roses are susceptible to an air pocket in the stem,
to avoid cut with sharp clean secateurs, with a long stem
and place immediately in a bucket of water.

Ensure a clean vase and warm water, add floral nutriment
and to keep bacteria levels low add:
1/4 teaspoon of bleach per quart of water or
a penny or an aspirin tablet to the water.

Check the water level daily topping up as necessary.

Do not remove all of the foliage.
Place away from fresh fruit, which can shorten life.
Locate away from direct sunlight and heating radiators.
Never use flower food with metal containers.

Spinach Makes You Strong?

cast members
'He's strong to the finish 'cause he still eats his spinach,
he's Popeye the Sailor Man'
Spinach was said to be especially rich in iron,
but the initial annalists had made an error,
putting the decimal point in the wrong place.

However spinach does has a high nutritional value
and is extremely rich in antioxidants,
especially when fresh, steamed, or very quickly blanched,
boiling for just four minutes can halve such goodness.

Easy to grow and provides an all year round crop.
Link to RHS horticultural advice: Spinach.

Bolting in Vegetables

A nuisance in the summer vegetable garden is bolting
when crops put on a vertical growth spurt to flower
and set seed before the vegetables are ready for harvest.
resulting in little that can be salvaged.

Day length is the biggest influence on bolting,
heat and/or water stress can speed bolting still further.
If a plant is having a tough time of it,
it stands to reason that it's going to want
to hasten seed production before it's time's up.

Link to RHS: Bolting in Vegetables.
Link to further advice: Preventing Bolting in Vegetables.

The Deckchair

In England, John Thomas Moore took out a patent in 1886
and started manufacturing the first deckchairs in Macclesfield.

The use of a single broad strip of canvas has been credited
to a British inventor named Atkins in the late 19th century.

Early in the 20th century the hiring out of deckchairs
became established in British seaside resorts.
In 2003 Blackpool boasted 68,000 deckchairs
were available for hire at £1.50 per day.

July, the perfect time, to bring out the deckchair from the shed,
to sit and take time to enjoy your garden.

Water Works

As the summer warms up and the soil looses moisture,
don’t waste water on established plants at the allotment,
concentrate on giving an evening soaking to:
raspberries, cucumbers and melons as the fruits are swelling;
potatoes when they are flowering;
and lettuces and spinach, to discourage bolting.

Link: Water saving tips for the gardener.

Gorse - Furze - Ulex

The plant genista inspired the name Plantagenets,
the English Royal line from 1154 to 1399.
It is said that the association begun,
from the nickname of the Count of Anjou
father of King Henry II.

A genus of about 20 species of spiny evergreen shrubs
in the subfamily Faboideae of the pea family Fabaceae.
It thrives in coastal situations and on poor, stony soils

The flowers are edible and can be used in salads,
tea and to make a non-grape-based 'wine'.
High in protein it is eaten as forage by some livestock,
such as feral ponies, who may eat little else in winter.

Link to RHS horticultural advice: Ulex europaeus.

Hanging Baskets

Time to give hanging baskets a little tender loving care.
Each day water night and morning through dry spells
and add a liquid feed once a week to sustain flowering.

Regularly remove dead flower heads and a selective trim
to any leggy plants will encourage new bushy growth.

Remove a plant from a mixed basket if not performing,
and where detrimental to the overall appearance,
ease it out and replace it with something appropriate.

Link to more detailed advice.

August 2018

Links to This Month's Articles

Home Page Photo: Cosmos
Clay Soil Management
Summer: Wisdom Of Old
Monarda 'Fireball' (Bergamot)
Lammas Day
August Bank Holiday
Xerochrysum bracteatum
Last Chance To Sow Biennial Flowers
Perseids Meteor Shower
Plant Oriental Winter Salads

Home Page Photo: Cosmos

Brightly coloured, long-lasting and easy to grow,
cosmos is a popular garden flower.
It’s great for the gardener, and popular with bees.

The ferny foliage of Cosmos bipinnatus contrasts well
amongst other bedding plants with larger leaves.

They thrive in poor soils, enjoy full sun
and flower until the first hard frost.

Link to RHS: Cosmos horticultural advice.

Clay Soil Management

Clay soils although hard to manage,
are also potentially very fertile
when treated in the right way.

Clays swell and shrink as they wet and dry,
effectively cultivating themselves and
drought is less damaging than with others soils.

Clay soils take longer to warm up in spring and
wet clay soils are damaged when dug or walked on.

Link to RHS: Advice with growing on a clay soil.

Link to RHS: Advice with what to grow on a clay soil.

Summer: Wisdom Of Old

One swallow does not make a summer.

The rich man gets his ice in summer,
and the poor man gets his in the winter.

Every cloud has a silver lining.

The mill cannot grind with the water that is past.

There is no new thing under the sun. (Ecclesiastes 1:9)

Monarda 'Fireball' (Bergamot)

Monarda 'Fireball' is a hardy perennial, with a compact habit,
topped throughout summer by scarlet flowers.

Easy to grow and a magnet for bees,
butterflies and other insects.

Use the dried leaves to make Bergamot tea
or the sweet, spicy flavoured petals to enhance
salads, jellies, rice or pasta dishes.

Link to RHS: Monarda horticultural advice.

Lammas Day

The first day of August is Lammas Day,
from the Anglo-Saxons hlas-mass or loaf-mass,
the medieval celebration of the wheat harvest.

The Lammas Loaf was the first loaf of bread
made with the grain from the new harvest
and used for communion in the medieval church.

Custom was the Lammas bread be broken into four bits,
which were placed at the four corners of the barn,
to protect the gathered grain.

Known as one of the 'Quarter Days',
rents and taxes were collected on Lammas Day.

August Bank Holiday

The first Monday in August,
was made a Bank Holiday under the Act of 1871
joining the previous three:
Easter Monday (on or soonest of the full moon after 21 March),
Whit Monday (first Monday in May),
and Boxing Day (26th December).

Good Friday and Christmas day were not included
as they had been recognised since time immemorial.

There is no automatic right to time off, or pay
it all depends on the individual's employment contract.

Xerochrysum bracteatum

Xerochrysum bracteatum
Commonly known as the golden everlasting or strawflower.

Grown from seed as a annual, reaching a metre tall
with green or grey leafy foliage.

Flower heads are produced through summer to autumn,
with papery bracts that resemble petals.

Popular as a dried flower.

Link to RHS: horticultural advice.

Sowing Biennial Flowers

August is the last chance to sow your biennial flowers
for wonderful displays in your garden next year.

Honesty, Wallflowers, Canterbury Bells, Sweet Williams,
Forget-me-nots, Foxgloves, all old cottage garden favourites.

Sow direct in the soil or in seed trays.
Keep watered and they will germinate in 14 days.
Those in seed trays pot on as necessary
and overwinter in cold frame.
Plant out in Spring next year.

RHS link: for their advice and recommendations.

Perseids Meteor Shower

Between 8th and 12th of August is the best
chance of observing a meteor shower.

Perspective make them appear from the
constellation of Perseus in the Northern sky.

Plants named "Star Gazer" include
a Lilium, a Hydrangea macrophlla and a Laurentia

Plant Winter Salads

Quick growing, tasty, nutritious and fresh,
Oriental greens make an ideal crop for pots
and windowboxes.

Sow in August and they
can provide leaves for salads
and stir-fries right through autumn.

Link to RHS: Advice and Guidance

September 2018

Links to This Month's Articles

Home Page Photo: Rudbeckia fulgida
Layered Daffodils In Pots
Sedum spurium 'Fuldaglut'
The Power Of Lions
What Is A Garden?
Welcome Bats Into Your Garden
Never a dull dahlia
Gardening Thoughts
Top Ten Autumn Grasses

Home Page Photo:
Rudbeckia fulgida

Rudbeckia fulgida
Rudbeckia fulgida is a super pollinator flower,
in the brightest of yellows. A rhizomatous perennial
with hairy leaves and branching stems.

Tough originating in the valleys of eastern North America.
Its requirements are a decent soil and adequate moisture,
with a welcoming boost of fertilizer each spring.

Link to RHS: for horticultural advice.

Layered Daffodils In Pots

Towards the end of August daffodils
can be planted in tubs and pots.

For a continuing display plant in layers,
each layer chosen to bloom in succession,
top layer first to bottom layer last.

Visit our Trading Centre which offers
a wide choice of quality spring bulbs at keen prices.

Link to Gardeners World video: Layering spring bulbs.

Sedum spurium 'Fuldaglut'

'Fuldaglut' is a sprawling, succulent, semi-evergreen perennial,
to about 10cm tall, with dark bronze-red leaves,
that turn greener in summer.

Clusters of deep rose-pink, star-shaped flowers
are produced on upright stems in late summer.

Link to RHS blog: Hyde Hall plant of the month.

The Power Of Lions

Having trouble with cats disturbing seed beds?
Angela Kirby reported in 'Country Living' that
a friend came round with a lion cub,
which roamed her garden urinating here and there.
Evidently not a single cat set its paws
in the garden for the next 12 months.

London Zoo experimented with lion dung
and spray to protect planted young saplings
from deer and rabbits.

What Is A Garden?

back gardens
To some it's just a piece of ground,
for which some gravel must be found.
For others, it's for veg to grow,
shrubs to blossom, lawns to mow.
To some it's a playground with sandpit and slide,
family barbacues, Dad cooking with pride.
For too few, it's nature's sanctuary,
with homes for all the birds and bees.
A welcome haven, where to find,
a soothing, comforting peace of mind.
What is a garden? Large or small,
it's a different thing to one and all.

Welcome Bats

Bats are welcome visitors to gardens being
highly efficient natural pest controllers,
eating hundreds of tiny insects every night,
including many of the pests damaging to plants
and those pesky biting insects.

Plant insect-friendly flowers such as Michaelmas daisies
which at night attract moths to make a ‘bat feast’.

Visit Chris Packham and Juliet Sargeant's: On Line Guide.


Now is the ideal time to invest in a compost bin,
to be prepared for when the leaves fall this autumn.

Home composting transforms landscape and kitchen waste
into a rich soil additive that works wonders for any garden.

Link to RHS: Guide for composting..

Never A Dull Dahlia

Dahlias are invaluable for the late summer border,
often flowering until the first frosts.

They offer a wide range of flower types,
and are enjoying a much deserved return to popularity.

Debranching, disbudding and deadheading:
by following a few basic rules,
prize-winning dahlias can be yours

RHS posting: Never A Dull Dahlia..

Link to RHS: Growing Dahlias..

Gardening Thoughts

bird bath
A busy hoe gathers no rust.

God made rainy days
so gardeners could get the housework done.

Whoever said do something right the first time
and you won't have to do it again,
never weeded a garden.

Give weeds an inch and they'll take your yard.

A garden is a delight to the eye
and a pain for the back.

Top Ten Autumn Grasses

Ornamental grasses adds colour at this late season,
with their slender foliage of distinctive form
give movement and extra interest.

Link to RHS: Top Ten Autumn Grasses..

October 2018

Links to This Month's Articles

Home Page Photo: Amarine ‘Belladiva’
Ideal Time To Plant Clematis
October Muse
Spiders In The Bath
Prune Shrub Roses Now
Pine And Conifer Trimmings
Phlox paniculata 'Rosa Pastell
Plant Hyacinths For Christmas
Bamboo Control
Hiring Gardening Contractors

Home Page Photo: Amarine ‘Belladiva’

Amarine ‘Belladiva’
It isn’t something you’d expect to see in October
a swathe of upstanding, pink flowers
growing brilliantly well outdoors in England.

But that’s what newcomer to the horticultural world,
Amarine ‘Belladiva’ can achieve.

The bulb is a hybrid cross of Amaryllis and Nerine.

Link to RHS: Advice on culture.

Link to RHS Wisley Blog - Amarine ‘Belladiva’.

Time To Plant Clematis

Autumn is the ideal time to plant Clematis.

There are varieties for near every situation
growing into trees, shady walls, sunny walls, in pots.

The British Clematis Society website offers words of wisdom
on selection, planting technique and tending.

Link to RHS: for their expert advice.

October Muse

The leaves are gold, the nuts are brown,

They hang so high, they won't come down.
Leave well alone, till frosty weather,
Then to tumble, as two together.

Autumn is marching on:
even the scarecrows are wearing dead leaves.

No Spring nor Summer Beauty hath such grace
As I have seen in one Autumnal face.

Gardening imparts an organic perspective
on the passage of time.

Spiders In The Bath

Spider season is late September and early October
as males go on the hunt for a mate and invade homes.

House spiders usually remain in their webs,
most commonly in sheds, garages and wood piles,
during the summer months.

They might be scary, but they are quite harmless,
and do a very good job for the garden and ecosystem.

Control spiders by limiting their food source.
Clear away dead flies and small crawling insects
by regularly and thoroughly vacuum cleaning.

Prune Roses Now

Pruning roses now better helps them to weather winter.
Roughly chop bush roses back by about a third,
taking out stems that cross the centre,
and anything dead or diseased.

This makes them less likely to get rocked about
and incur winter damage.

More thoughtful pruning can take place in spring.

Link to RHS: Rose pruning: general tips.

Pine And Conifer Trimmings

Pine needles and conifer hedge trimmings take much longer
to break down than other leaves,
so put them a separate bin.

After two or three years they will break down
to an acidic leaf mould perfect for use around
ericaceous plants such as azaleas and rhododendrons.

Link to RHS: Conifer care.

Link to Gardener's World: How To Trim A Conifer Hedge.

Phlox paniculata 'Rosa Pastell

A classic late-summer border perennial,
Phlox paniculata 'Rosa Pastell' has large heads
of pastel pink flowers opening from deep pink buds.

A Phlox paniculata requires adequate moisture to do best
but generally are reliable and trouble-free.
They can grow happily in full sun or light shade.

Link to RHS: for horticultural advice.

Plant Hyacinths For Christmas

Plant prepared hyacinths in bowls for Christmas scent
and colour in the house.

Follow the advice in this short programme clip from Gardeners’ World
in which Monty Don advices on:
Choosing a suitable container,
P:lanting depth and spacing,
The right conditions to ensure flowering at the festive season.

Link to Gardener's World: Monty Don's advice.

Bamboo Control

Bamboos are usually valuable ornamental plants.
However, if not kept under control,
some bamboos can become invasive garden weeds,
particularly the types that spread by underground stems.

Follow this simple guide to get rid of bamboo, or at least bring it under control.

Link to RHS: Bamboo Control.

Hiring Gardening Contractors

hedge trim
When you need help in the garden,
there are a wealth of people out there to help,
but it can be difficult knowing who to use.

Follow this link to: RHS tips to help choose.

November 2018

Links to This Month's Articles

Home Page Photo: Gaura lindheimeri
Renovating Overgrown Climbers
Penstemon Andenken
Fact Or Fiction?
Fruit Tree Grease bands
Autumn Leaves
Don't Cut Down Everything
Provide An Insect Hotel
November Muse
Cornus For Winter Colour

Home Page Photo: Gaura lindheimeri

Gaura lindheimeri
This perennial bears willowy wands of starry
blush-white flowers that continue into November.br />
It will overwinter in reasonable winters.
Mature plants tend to become woody and brittle,
so should be replaced after three years
by raising from seed.

Link to RHS: for horticultural advice.

Renovating Overgrown Climbers

Climbers and wall shrubs can become overgrown,
extending over the top of the fence or into nearby trees,
often with reduced flowering.

Deciduous climbers and wall shrubs can be hard-pruned
in November to bring back under control
and promote new growth for next years flowering.

Link to RHS: for horticultural advice.

Penstemon Andenken

Penstemon Andenken
When considering late-flowering penstemons the pinks, red and purples are better than the blues.

Andenken (often sold as ‘Garnet) carries wine-red refined spires of of flower produced continually between July and November is one of the best.

Link to RHS: for horticultural advice.

Fact Or Fiction?

Marigolds kill weeds:
True: Their roots secrete a substance that discourages
growth of couch grass and bindweed.

Washing up liquid and organic insecticide are identical:
False: Insecticidal is specially based on fatty acids
that ‘soak in’ through Aphids natural waxy coating.

Nasturtiums draw Aphid attack from gooseberries:
True: Aphids prefer the Nasturtiums
if densely planted around the gooseberry bushes.

Cuckoo spit does little harm:
True: The frothy white spittle conceals nymphs
of the harmless froghopper, which in adulthood
resembles a small grasshopper.

Grease bands

grease bands
Adult wingless female winter moths
begin to start emerging in November.

To prevent them climbing the trunks
and laying their eggs in the branches of fruit trees,
now is the time to apply glue bands or grease bands
on trunks and tree stakes around 45cm above soil level.

Link to RHS: for detailed advice.

Autumn Leaves

autumn leaves
Don't leave them too long on the lawns
or they will kill the grass underneath.

Where they have fallen in the beds
and have not drifted too deeply,
leave the earthworms to pull them into the soil
and to rot on the surface to replenish the soil.

Where leaves have drifted deeply or are smothering
smaller plants or silver Mediterranean herbs and perennials,
clear to keep the plants dry and airy.

Sweeping leaves off paths and terraces keeps the garden
looking cared for and covers for disorder in the beds.

Don't Cut Down Everything

Leave the perennials standing don't cut down,
their winter skeletons provide winter interest
and can be left until February or March.

Fennel and miscanthus, verbena and teasel
make good hibernacula for beneficial insects
and their seed keeps the birds going in cold snaps.

Provide An Insect Hotel

insect hotel
Leave a few logs in one area of your garden
to act as a winter home for ladybirds, beetles,
woodlice and earthworms.

Consider leaving a pile of leaves in a corner,
or a section of your grass uncut.

Hedgehogs like a wooden box with leaves for bedding.

This will help to encourage diversity in your garden,
to help your plants thrive when springtime arrives.

The RSPB offers a guide on building an insect hotel use this link.

November Muse

November comes
And November goes,
With the last red berries
And the strong wind blows.

With night coming early,
And dawn coming late,
And ice in the bucket
And frost by the gate.

The fires burn
And the kettles sing,
And earth sinks to rest
Until next spring.

Cornus For Winter Colour

This deciduous shrub has oval, mid-green leaves and
produces small, creamy-white flowers in May and June.

Coloured stems are revealed when the leaves,
which turn orange-yellow in autumn, fall.

Looks special planted in groups in a winter border.
Does best in full sun and works particularly well
when teamed with varieties of different colour stems.

Link to RHS: for further information.

December 2018

Links to This Month's Articles

Camellia transnokoensis
Winter Structure In The Garden
Plants For Winter Interest
Trees Revered In Midwinter
Hardy Heathers
Christmas Tree Origns
Dig Your Bean Trench
Attend To The Shed
Try Sowing Some Seeds
A Good Read

Camellia transnokoensis

Camellia transnokoensis
Camellia transnokoensis produces Pink-tipped buds
which open into clusters of small, white flowers
with a long cylinder of white, gold-tipped stamens.

The flowers start opening here on Hayling Island
during December and continue through until March.

With bronze-coloured new growth in the spring,
small leaves and an elegant, upright habit,
it looks good all year through.

Link to RHS: for detailed information.

Winter Structure In The Garden

Graham Rice chooses his top 10 winners
of the RHS Award of Garden Merit
for creating structure in the garden in winter

Direct link: to read the article.

Plants For Winter Interest

Many plants with winter interest are scented,
most are shade tolerant, some adaptable for containers
to be moved around according to the season.

The sight and scent of these recommended plants
can cheer up a dull time of the year.

RHS link: five top plants with winter interest.

Trees Revered In Midwinter

The oak was venerated by the Druids,
together with Holly, ivy, and mistletoe.

Evergreens in ancient Rome were thought
to have special powers and used for decoration,
symbolizing the promised return of life in spring
and came to symbolize eternal life for Christians.

Vikings hung fir and ash trees
with war trophies for good luck.

In the middle ages, trees in the orchard
were decorated with apples on Christmas Eve,
which they called "Adam and Eve Day."

Hardy Heathers

Heathers offer bee-enticing blooms for all seasons.
They create evergreen ground cover and variation
in foliage and flower colour and some are scented.

Winter and spring flowering Erica carnea, E. × darleyensis,
and the summer flowering E. vagans will tolerate
a slightly heavier soil (pH reading of 7.0 or higher)
as long as there is plenty of well-rotted organic matter.

RHS link: Hardy Heathers.

Christmas Tree Origns

In 16th-century Germany, on Christmas Eve,
a fir tree decorated with paper flowers
was carried through streets to the town square,
where a feast and celebration ensued,
that included dancing around the tree,
followed by its ceremonial burning.

Dig Your Bean Trench

bean trench
Dig the trench where growing your beans next year
fill it with compostable kitchen waste (not cooked food)
and cover with soil again.

This will rot down and improve the soil conditions
for your beans which enjoy a nutriment rich site.

With heavy clay soil, the weeks previous, cover with polythene to keep it drier and allow easier digging.

RHS link: advice on growing beans.

Attend To The Shed

When a dry mild spell is forecast consider
giving the garden shed some attention
in preparation for the spring.

How you preserve and maintain a garden shed
depends on its condition and previous treatments
which influences which products to use
and your desired final finish.

When removing the contents take the opportunity
to dispose of long unused items and create space.

Don't forget to improve the security to discourage theft.

Use this link: for advice on shed treatments.

Try Sowing Some Seeds

It might be cold and damp outside but indoor sowings
can be made of coleus, cyclamen and geranium seeds
provided suitable temperatures can be maintained.

These varieties are slow from seed, hence starting early,
plants will begin blooming in time for spring.

The seeds have a tough outer coats,
so to increase germination rates,
it helps to moisten them before sowing.

To hedge your bets, don't sow all seeds in the packet
keep some back for a January / February second try
should the December planting fail.

A Good Read

Looking for a good horticultural read over Christmas?
The BBC Gardeners' World Live team were asked
to recommend their favourite gardening books
and they came up with the following list.

The New Vegetables, Herbs and Fruit:
An Illustrated Encyclopedia
by Matthew Biggs, Jekka McVicar and Bob Flowerdew

Alan Titchmarsh the Gardener's Year
by Alan Titchmarsh

The Art of Making Gardens
by Luciano Giubbilei, Fergus Garrett and Paul Smith

Garden Design: A Book of Ideas
by Heidi Howcroft and Marianne Majerus

Making a Garden: Successful gardening by nature's rules
by Carol Klein

Joe's Small Garden Handbook
by Joe Swift

Gardening at Longmeadow
by Monty Don

365 Days of Colour in Your Garden
by Nick Bailey

Real Gardens
by Adam Frost

The Children’s Garden
by Matthew Appleby

January 2019

Links to This Month's Articles

Home Page Photo: Helleborus
Digging Muse
Flower Anagrams
Cold And Frosty Morn
January Folk Law
Protect From Winter's Weather
Four Shrubs Flowering in January
Grow Polyanthus From Seed
Storing Gardening Chemicals
Happy New Year

Home Page Photo:
Helleborus Christmas Rose

Helleborus which is flowering in southern gardens now,
is a part of the Ranunculaceae family.

Hellebore prefer to grow in a sheltered dappled shade,
protected from the effects of icy winds.

Commercially grown corms can be purchased
from our Trading Centre in early spring.

Plant 300mm (12 inches) apart in a moist, well-drained soil,
with leaf-mould and decayed manure applied.

Propigate by lifting old clumps in April and dividing.

Feed and mulch annually in autumn.

Digging Muse

To forget how to dig the earth and to tend the soil
is to forget ourselves.
Mahatma Gandhi

A gardener is one who calls a spade a spade:
Until they fall over one.

You can bury a lot of troubles digging in the dirt.

The best place to seek God is in a garden.
You can dig for him there.
George Bernard Shaw

Come my spade. There is no ancient gentlemen
but gardeners, ditchers, and grave-makers;
they hold up Adam's profession.
Shakespeare, Hamlet V,i

Flower Anagrams

SoresSteal micMeet Front Go
OccursLaid DoffRain on act
Arks Purl

Thy Chains

Lovely Thief Ally

Answers at the foot of this page.

Cold And Frosty Morn

If your greenhouse is devoid of plants,
open the doors and vents.
on cold and frosty mornings.

The natural way to kill off pests,
over wintering in the nooks and crannies.

Another tip is to leave the chickens inside,
to scratch over soil and root out bugs.
Their manure is also a welcome asset.

January Folk Law

If St. Paul's day be fair and clear,
it will betide a happy year.
(St. Paul's day 25th January)

By her who in this month is born,
No gems save Garnets should be worn.

January brings the snow,
Makes our feet and fingers glow.
'Sara Coleridge'

From Christmas to May, weak cattle decay.

Who in January sows oats, gets gold and groats.
Who sows in May, gets little that way.

Protect From Winter's Weather

Protect from frosts, gale-force winds and heavy rain.

Check tree ties and stakes on established plants,
replace, tighten or slacken them where necessary.

Firm back newly planted trees and shrubs,
where lifted by frost heave or strong winds.

Brush heavy snow off the branches where chance of damage.

General Gardening Tasks in January

Shrubs Flowering in January

in bloom




The January garden need not be devoid of blooms
herewith just four of the shrubs offering colour and scent
Click on the species to link to the RHS plant details.

Grow Polyanthus From Seed

Sow thinly from January onwards,
on the surface of a pot of pre-watered compost.
Place on a windowsill, 10-15°C (50-60°F),
Keep moist not letting dry out.
Seedlings generally appear in 21-42 days.

Pot on individually, holding by a leaf, never by the stem.
Plant out June-October, 20cm (8") apart.
Flowers: March to May next year.

Link to Monty Don's videoHow To Sow Polyanthus.

Storing Gardening Chemicals

Store in a cool, dark, dry and locked cupboard to:

Keep each of the products in premium condition.
Prevent labels and instructions from mouldering or fading.
Keep safe from children and pets.

Check periodically to clear out obsolete items.

Advice from the RHS: Chemicals storage, usage and disposal .

Happy New Year

New Year’s is one of the oldest holidays still celebrated,
but the exact date and nature of festivities has changed over time.
It originated thousands of years ago in ancient Babylon,
celebrated as an eleven day festival on the first day of spring.

During this time, many cultures used the sun and moon cycle
to decide the “first” day of the year.
It wasn’t until Julius Caesar implemented the Julian calendar
that January 1st became the common day for the celebration.

Answers To Flower Anagrams

RosesClematisForget Me Not


Lilly of the Valley

February 2019

Links to This Month's Articles

Home Page Photo: Cornus mas
Planting For Wildlife
Prune Mophead Hydrangers
Galanthus: Snow Drops
February Folk Law
Feed Fruit Trees and Shrubs
First Early Potatoes
The UK’s Most Expensive Tree
Dahlia Tubers Available Now
Saxifraga apiculata

Home Page Photo: Cornus mas

Cornus mas
Cornus mas (Cornelian cherry) is a deciduous shrub,
or small tree growing to approximately 6m height.

The plants first display is in early spring
when it produces masses of small yellow flowers
before the leaves shoot.

In summer the foliage is green and ovate
until autumn brings displays of yellow, oranges and red.

In Autumn the cherry sized edible fruits,
ripen to red then almost black.

The fruit is slightly acidic so is often used
for jams, sauces or as a dried snack.

Link to RHS: Horticultural advice

Planting For Wildlife

A wildlife-friendly garden doesn't have to be overgrown,
with "know how" it can look attractive all year round.
The RSPB offers this advice and guidance.

Prune Mophead Hydrangers

A February mild spell is the time,
to cut back the old flower heads,
of mophead hydrangers

Prune to just above the first healthy buds.

To keep plant young and vigurous,
cut down and thin out old woody stems.

General Gardening Tasks in February

Galanthus: Snow Drops

Snowdrops are a hardy bulbous perennial,
at home in both woodlands and rock gardens.

There are 75 different species and varieties.

They like a neutral to slightly alkaline soil,
rich but well draining.

Purchased snowdrops are planted in autumn,
locate in dappled shade.
Dig a wide shallow hole, add furtilizer,
and just scatter the bulbs.

Regularly water until the frosts.

Snowdrops take time to fully establish.

Divide established groups directly after flowering.

The common snowdrop also has medicinal uses.
The bulb contains galanthamine,
used in the management of Alzheimer’s.

February Folk Law

If in February there be no rain,
'tis neither good for hay nor grain.

If Candlemas Day be sunny and bright,
Winter will have another flight.
If Candlemas Day be cloudy with rain,
Winter is gone, and won't come again.
(Candlemas Day 2nd February)

The Snowdrop, in purest white array,
First rears her head on Candlemas day.

On your farm at Candlemas Day,
Should be half the straw,
and two-thirds hay.

Sow your beans on St Valentine's Day.
(14th February)

All the months in the year curse a fair February.

Feed Fruit Trees and Shrubs

Apply Fertiliser Beneath Fruit Trees and Shrubs.

First remove any mulch, feed around the roots,
water and renew the mulch.

Use organic rather than chemical fertilisers,
to ensure a slow release of nutrients.

A burst of growth too early in the season
increases the risk from disease and pests.

First Early Potatoes

First early potatoes are now available.
Chit them in egg boxes, end up, in a light, frost-free place.

Plant the tubers when the shoots reach 2.5cm (1in) long
and the weather permits spaced at 30cm (12in) apart
on a sunny site away from frost pockets.
Keep well watered in dry weather and hoe up with growth.

RHS advice on How To Grow Potatoes

The UK’s Most Expensive Tree

Berkely Square
In London's Berkely Square is a mature Victorian plane
valued (according to BBC’s Country File) at £750,000.

It's size, health, historical significance and local’s enjoyment,
was taken into consideration when assessing the value.

Dahlia Tubers Available Now

A quality selection of dahlia tubers
are now available from our Trading Centre.

Start tubers into growth indoors from early spring.
Divide the tubers when shoots are 2-3cm (1 inch) tall,
by separating them into portions ensuring,
each has both roots and shoots.
Pot into separate containers and grow on.
Plant out when all chance of frost is past.

RHS advice on Dahlia cultivation.

Saxifraga apiculata

Saxifraga apiculata
Saxifraga apiculata is an alpine that comes into flower
in mild winters from February onward.

'Gregor Mendel' has small white blooms,
is easy to grow and quickly spreading.

Link to RHS: Horticultural advice.

March 2019

Links to This Month's Articles

Home Page Photo: Vinca Minor
Get Busy For The Bees
Give Camellias Some TLC
Floral Cryptic Teasers
Time to Divide Summer Perennials
March 20th: First Day of Spring
Daffodils For Next Spring
Non-Chemical Weed Control
Lilies: Growing In Containers

Home Page Photo: Vinca Minor

Vinca Minor (Periwinkle) is so easy to grow
it tends to becomes invasive so can be an
ideal ground cover plant for smothering weeds.

Not too happy in dry soils.
Tolerates sheltered seaside conditions.

Useful for shaded areas but flowers best in full sun.
Blooms from early spring to mid summer.
The leaves are evergreen with varigated forms available.

Link to RHS: Horticultural advice.

Get Busy For The Bees

Help the bees by propagating Nectar rich plants.
For the experts advice take these web links:
RHS Plants for pollinators.
Gardeners World: Best plants for bees.
BBC: Plants for bees.

Give Camellias Some TLC

March is the ideal time to give your camellias,
attention to promote flowering for next year.

Feed with an acidic fertiliser such as:
Chempak Ericaceous, Miracle-gro Ericaceous,
sulphate of ammonia or sulphate of potash.

Apply mulch around the base to trap winter rain.

Lightly prune, immediately after flowering,
to shape and remove dead or diseased wood.

Link to: RHS guidance

Floral Cryptic Teasers

1. A shy Yorkshire lass2. Solar Blooms
3. A very untidy bird4. On a stylish tandem
5. A vessel full of cholesterol6. Witch's transport
7. Aim your rotten fruit

8. A prickly Scot

Answers at the foot of this page.

Divide Summer Perennials

Spring and ideal time to divide summer flowering perennials.
to ensure healthy, vigorous, rejuvenated plants,
that will continue to perform for further years.

When replanting:
Apply fertilizer, mulch and a support frame.
Ensure plants don’t dry out while they re-establish.
Control slugs and snails to prevent damage to new growth.

Link to: RHS guidance

March 20th: First Day of Spring

There's a magic in the meadows,
There's a presence in the trees,
There's a host of dainty dancers,
Swaying gaily in the breeze.

There are buds and shoots and blossoms,
There to cause our hearts to sing.
All nature cries, "Rejoice! Rejoice!"
Because, at last, it's Spring.

(M. E. Ireland)

What does the farmer do in the spring?
He sows the seed that harvest bring:
But first he wakes the earth from sleep
By ploughing well and harrowing deep.

(Thirza Walely)

Less lyrical UK Metrological Office guide: When Does Spring Start?

Daffodils For Next Spring

Daffodils form next year's bloom now,
so give them some help by feeding with,
a general purpose fertiliser e.g. Growmore.

Dead head and leave the leaves unbunched
for at least 6 weeks after flowering.

In dry conditions after flowering,
water thoroughly until the foliage
shows signs of dying down naturally.

Where container-grown, apply a high potassium liquid feed,
such as tomato food, at one to two week intervals,
from when the blooms have faded,
until the first signs of yellowing of foliage.

Link to: RHS guidance

Non-Chemical Weed Control

Weeds can be controlled without resorting to weedkillers.
from manual removal to smothering, burning and weed barriers.

Link to: RHS advice
Link to: BBC Organic Gardening.


Forsythia × intermedia is a deciduous shrub,
with golden-yellow flowers in early spring.
Happy in most soils and locations.

RHS Link: Horticultural advice. RHS advice on how to prune.

Lilies: Growing In Containers

A quality selection of Lily bulbs
are now available from our Trading Centre.

Lilies grow well in containers, giving the flexibility
to position for maximum effect in the garden
also to fill that blank space in the border.

RHS advice on Growing Lilies In Containers.

Floral Criptic Solutions

1. Primrose2. Sunflowers
3. Ragged Robin4. Daisy
5. Buttercup6. Broom
7. Stocks

8. Thistle

April 2019

Links to This Month's Articles

Home Page Photo: Muscari armeniacum
Doctor's Orders
April Showers
Start Your Tomatoes
Best Crops For Beginners
Eliminating Couch Grass
Hints On Dividing Plants
Sowing Beetroot Seeds
Keeping Weeds At Bay
Elements To Successful Planting

Home Page Photo:
Muscari armeniacum

Muscari armeniacum Armenian grape hyacinth
is a strong-growing bulbous perennial.
Hardy, easy to grow with long-lasting blooms.

In autumn plant the bulbs 10cm deep in a well-draining soil.
Naturalises easily and ideal for the woodland garden.
Divide congested clumps late summer to maintain vigour.

RHS Link: Hoticultural Advice.

Doctor's Orders

Gardening is medicine that does not need a prescription.
Hanna Rion

A garden is the best alternative therapy.
Germaine Greer

Never go to a doctor whose office plants have died.
Erma Bombeck

Attention to health is the greatest hindrance to life.

To plant a garden is to believe in tomorrow.
Audrey Hepburn

Life begins the day you start a garden.
Chinese proverb

Psychology Today Link: Why Gardening Is Good For Mental Health.

April Showers

The driver of April Showers is the position of the jet stream.

In early spring, the jet stream begins moving northwards,
resulting in a series of depressions from the Atlantic,
driving across the UK bringing Westerly winds and rain.

'Sweet April showers Do spring May flowers'
is part of a poem first recorded in 1610.

Start Your Tomatoes

Time to sow tomato seeds indoors,
for planting out after all risk of frost has passed.

An alternative is to buy ready-grown tomato plants,
and chose a variety that is blight resistant.

Thompson Morgan have produced a comprehensive guide,
Link to: guidance on tomato varieties.

Best Crops For Beginners

Potatoes require little effort to raise a crop.
Runner beans and french beans are reliable.
Spring onions and radishes are both easy and quick growing.
The herb mint will grow like a weed and spreads fast.

Thompson Morgan's Top 10 Easy To Grow Vegetables.

Eliminating Couch Grass

Couch Grass
Couch Grass(Elymus repens) is an old enemy for many gardeners.
A difficult perennial weed with creeping fibrous roots.
Over time it takes a firm grip and starts to spread rampantly.

Spray with glyphosate (RoundUp) which kills in about 6 weeks.
If still persisting then a further application is required.

Link to RHS: Advice and Guidance

Hints On Dividing Plants

In 1933 Walter Brett the then editor of "Home Gardening",
edited "The Home Gardening Encyclopaedia",
published by C. Arthur Pearson Ltd.

448 pages of guidance for the "Home Gardener"
with a series of hand drawings to illustrate.

Some things never change.
Click to display page 121: Hints On Dividing Plants.

Sowing Beetroot Seeds

"No dig" expert Charles Dowding plants beetroot seeds
in seed trays rather than direct into the soil.
One can give them a controlled environment
which ensures a better germination success.

He finds because beetroot has a round root
it tolerates being carefully transplanted.

Charles plants three to four seeds per compartment
and transplants them out together because
he finds beetroot likes company, then harvesting,
when young, the largest first,
leaving the others to grow on for later picking.

Link to: Charles Dowding's website.

Keeping Weeds At Bay

Learn to recognise weeds at their earliest growth.
Generally anything growing extra vigorously is a weed.

Dispose, and never compost perennial weeds:
dandelion, bindweed, dock, ground elder, couch grass.
Use an herbicide on paths, gravel and perennial weeds.

Hoe when dry. hand weed when wet.

Consider using a weed proof membrane.
Liberally mulch with organic matter.
Never let weeds flower and spread seed.

Weed freshly dug ground as soon as they appear or
sow green manure crops to smother weed growth.
Remove top compost from purchased pot grown plants.

Elements To Successful Planting

Select healthy plants, right plant, in right place.
Thoroughly soak the root ball in a bucket.
Dig the planting hole larger than the root ball.
Add compost and nutriment to improve soil.
Drive in a support pole if an upright.
Fill hole with water and allow to drain away.
Tease roots to aid spread into soil.
Place plant into hole at right depth.
Back fill with soil and gently firm in.
Regularly water until established.

May 2019

Links to This Month's Articles

Home Page Photo: Rhododendron luteum
Hope Springs Eternal
Average May Weather
Floral Cryptic Teasers 2
Sow Your Vegetable Seeds
Choose the Right Size Pot
Regular Watering and Feeding
Tallest Sunflower Record
Prune Your Evergreen Shrubs In May
How To Garden On Line Guides

Home Page Photo:
Rhododendron luteum

Yellow azalea
Rhododendron luteum (Yellow azalea)is at its best in May.

These shrubs require a moist, humus-rich acid soil.
They tolerate partial shade but do better in full sun.

It offers spectacular autumn colour when
the leaves turn orange, purple and red.

Link to RHS: Horticultural advice.

Hope Springs Eternal

With a garden, there is hope.
Grace Firth

Gardening is an exercise in optimism.
Elizabeth Murray

A garden is never so good as it will be next year.
Thomas Cooper

Gardeners dream bigger dreams than an Emperor's.
Mary Cantwell

Gardeners are ever optimistic and looking to something better.
Vita Sackville-West

The love of a garden is a seed, once sown, that never dies.
Vita Sackville-West

Average May Weather

Hayling Island Average Temperatures:
Low: 10°C / 50°F Medium: 14°C / 62°F High: 18°C / 65°F.
Average Sunshine 8 hours.
Average Rainfall 50 mm / 2 inches: Rainfall Days 15.
Average Sea Temperature 11°C / 52°F.

Risks of frost past, temperatures moderate and rain probable,
it's time to finish planting out your summer bedding.

Floral Cryptic Teasers 2

1. Auntie of boy wizard2. Sauce thickener?
3. A fancy feline4. Harlequins spouse
5. The matador inspires6. Unhappy carillon
7. A hand in your front room

8. Ruminant's petticoat

Answers at the foot of this page.

Sow Your Vegetable Seeds

veg seeds
Broad beans, carrots, lettuces, spinach, salad leaves, leeks,
and chard can all be sown as seed this month.
A wide variety of seeds are available from our Trading Centre.

Follow the instructions on the packet.
Where possible start them off in pots in the greenhouse,
or on a window ledge to ensure better results.

Don't sow entire packets of seed in one go!
Sow salads in short runs fortnightly for a continuous crop.

Sarah Raven: Top 5 vegetable seeds to sow in May.

Choose the Right Pot

The right pot can benefit a plant's health and life span.
Partner the pot size to the plants requirements.
Use the right compost for the plant.
Consider total weight to move or support.
Locate to the plant's needs.
Check pot is frost proof if in an outside location.

Miracle Gro How to pick the right pot for your plant.

RHS video: Guide to potting on.

Regular Watering and Feeding

The outer skin of tomatoes, potatoes and carrots,
harden under drought conditions.

Then when followed by heavy rain or watering,
the spurt of growth splits the skin,
making unsuitable for entering in a Show.

Regular watering and feeding ensures maximum crop yield,
and best appearance for the show bench.

RHS advice on watering.

Tallest Sunflower Record

The tallest sunflower record is held by
Hans-Peter Schiffer (according to the Guiness Book of Records)
standing 9.i7 m (30 ft 1 in) on 28 August 2014 in Kaarst, Germany.

How to grow the tallest Sunflowers: An Expert's Guide.

Pruning Evergreen shrubs

shrub pruning
May and the ideal time to prune evergreen shrubs,
also deciduous shrubs that have finished blooming.
Act before the new growth begins.

Cut out the dead, weak and branches that carried flowers.
Prune out the centre and cross over branches to open form.

RHS advice and guidance.

How To Garden: On Line Guides

shrub pruning
The Thompson and Morgan website hosts an interesting,
batch of How To Garden presentations.

Use this link to access: How To Gardening Guides.

Floral Cryptic 2 Solutions

1. Petunia2. Cornflower
3. Dandelion4. Columbine
5. Bulrushes6. Bluebell
7. Parlour Palm

8. Cowslip

June 2019

Links to This Month's Articles

Home Page Photo: Iris (Iridaceae)
When It’s Dry Attack Weeds
Plant Now For Autumn Colour
Flower Anagrams
Hints On Taking Cuttings
Home Truths
Potato Harvesting
Time To Thin Fruit
Low Asthma Gardening
On Line Gardening Advice

Home Page Photo: Iris (Iridaceae)

Iris are at their best in gardens now.
All are available in a rainbow of colours
types, versatility and heights.

They are among the most elegant and easy to grow of flowers,
Link: Doddington Hall's top iris tips.
Link: Irises care and variety guide

When It’s Dry Attack Weeds

When it’s dry, attack ground elder, lords and ladies
and the like with systemic weed killer painted onto the leaves.

Trail tips of bindweed into jam jars full of the same.

Link to: RHS guidance on using chemicals in the garden.

Plant Now For Autumn Colour

tuberous begonia
Plant bulbs now for a burst of colour later in the summer.
Dahlia, gladiolus, canna, crocosmia, tuberous begonia
and tigridia are all excellent candidates.

Visit our Trading Centre for a quality choice.

Flower Anagrams

1. Tears2. Ewes Peat3. Drainage
4. It's Love

5. Up List

6. O Mad Girl

Answers at the foot of this page.

Hints On Taking Cuttings

In 1933 Walter Brett the then editor of "Home Gardening",
edited "The Home Gardening Encyclopaedia",
published by C. Arthur Pearson Ltd.

448 pages of guidance for the "Home Gardener"
with a series of hand drawings to illustrate.

Some things never change.
Click to display page 105: Hints On Taking Cuttings.

Home Truths

Life is like a tin of sardines,
we are all looking for the key.

Never stand between a dog and a lamp post.

If if's and and's were pots and pans,
there'd be no work for tinkers' hands.

Fine words butter no parsnips.

Gossip needs no carriage.

The best fertilizer is a gardener's shadow.

Friends are the flowers in life's garden.

Gardeners don't get old, they go to pot.

The only thing I grow in my garden is tired.

Potato Harvesting

Harvest first and second early potatoes,
once flowers start to open.

Generally June/July for first early
and July/August for second earlies.

Leave maincrop in the ground till foliage dies.
Generally September/October.

RHS video:Harvesting and storing potatoes.

Time To Thin Fruit

Following the natural June drop it's worth reducing
numbers further for the best-size fruits.

Pears thin to two fruits per cluster, clusters 10-15cm apart.
Plums thin to 5-8cm apart.
Apples thin to one fruit per cluster with:
Dessert apples, thin to 10-15cm between clusters.
Cooking varieties, thin to 15-23cm between clusters.

RHS advice

Low Asthma Gardening

Asthma UK recommends gardeners with pollen sensitivities,
cultivate foxgloves, honeysuckle, lavender,
jasmine, sweet william and dahlias.

The pollen of these plants is hidden inside the petals
where as ornamental grasses and trees or shrubs with
catkins throw off large amounts of pollen into the air.

Direct link to: Asthma UK.

On Line Gardening Advice

Wyevale Garden Centres website hosts an interesting,
batch of How To Garden presentations.

Use this link to access: Gardening Advice.

Answers To Flower Anagrams

1. Aster2. Sweet Pea3. Gardenia
4. Violets

5. Tulips

6. Marigold