When planting potted perennial bushes and flowers it is important to first select a compatible location based on the type of garden plant you are planting. To determine this, either look at the plant’s tag or inquire with the nursery where you are purchasing the garden flower or bush to find out whether the plant grows better with more sun or more shade.
Sometimes there may be a specification as to whether the garden plant will grow better with a northern exposure, eastern exposure, etc. Once you have determined a suitable location, the next step will be to dig the hole for the plant.
In favourable areas late winter can be almost spring-like, especially in a mild period, but don’t be lulled into sowing and planting outdoors too soon. If the weather turns cold, seeds will not germinate, and seedlings and plants may receive such a check to their growth that they do not do as well as those sown or planted later. Concentrate your efforts on indoor sowing, but make the most of frames and cloches, too, for early crops.
One way of getting plants off to an early start (tomatoes and lettuces, for example) is to sow them in small plastic containers, clearly labelled, in a heated greenhouse. This means that when the spring temperatures do pick up, they can be moved outside, under cloches especially at night when the temperatures can suddenly drop.
New gardeners are so often put off gardening at the thought that it has to involve hours and hours of hard work in their garden. The popular idea of a low-maintenance garden is one of covering the space with decking and gravel, planted with a few grasses and pots of evergreens.
When you consider the tenacity of weeds, it’s a wonder any of us win the pitched battles we wage with these pesky invaders. It seems like there is a never-ending battle between you and all the plants that you don’t want to be growing in your garden.
Of course, there are many gardeners who enjoy the time spent weeding the garden, and we admire them tremendously – there are great physical and mental benefits to spending time outdoors among your plants.
Without water a house plant must die. This may take place in a single day in the case of a seeding in sandy soil, or it may take months if the plant has fleshy leaves. But in the end the result is always the same. Because of this obvious fact many gardener beginners give daily dribbles of water, they fail to reduce the frequency of plant watering once winter arrives and they immediately assume that the plant is thirsty whenever leaves wilt or turn yellow. This produces a soggy mass in which practically no house plant can survive. Waterlogging kills by preventing vital air getting to the roots and by encouraging root-rotting diseases. More plants die through overwatering than any other single cause – they are killed by kindness.
Even the most dedicated maintenance cannot make a large tree suitable for a small garden, and there is a list of smaller garden trees that are ideally suited to such a calling. All of them are rated by the RHS as H4, or ‘hardy’ so will be suitable for most gardens, and all are quite easy to grow. Just because your garden is small, don’t think you can’t have trees.
If your garden is very small, it might be best to choose a deciduous tree that will lose its leaves in winter, thus allowing your home to receive much-needed winter sun for warmth in the colder months. A small evergreen tree in garden might be ideal for providing privacy for your garden from neighbouring upstairs’ windows. In small gardens, it is a good idea to prune the lower branches of trees as they grow to allow more light into the garden or house.
Winter has its ups and downs, whilst we’re treated with festive cheer and an excuse to eat all the food we can stomach, we must also suffer cold weather and darkened days. The flower garden too can produce a surprising number of blooms during the winter months, with everything from jasmine to aconites around to provide a splash of colour during the colder months. But, while the sun may be dimmed, winter gardens have never been brighter and here are ten reasons why:
1. Cornus alba ‘Sibirica’
Otherwise known as Red-barked Dogwood, no pun intended, this cultivar has been granted the esteemed honour of Award of Garden Merit, based on its beauty and hardiness despite a very low level of maintenance. Deciduous garden shrubs and more rarely small trees with four-petaled flowers in early spring. Grown in full sun it will yield bright red bark and need only be trimmed once every spring to provide best results.