Gardening

Yesterday, 12:23
Lush lilac-coloured clematis flowers in bloom. PA Photo/thinkstockphotos

Do you have a tall space you’d like to fill with fragrant blooms? Or perhaps an eyesore you want to mask? The answer may be in a carefully chosen climbing plant, whether it’s roses around the door or velvet blue wisteria dripping from the house wall, fragrant sweet peas in a pot to enjoy as soon as you open the patio door or an arbour covered in the saucer-sized clematis blooms.

Gardening behind bars

Friday, June 17, 2016
The Clink Gardens at HMP Send, Surrey. PA Photo/Nishi Sharma

For some time now we’ve all known that gardening is among the best pastimes for both physical and mental wellbeing – but it’s also being used to help rehabilitate prisoners and give them hope for the future.

Soft hues, as featured in the LG Smart Garden, could catch on. PA Photo/Hannah Stephenson

Subtle planting, soft blue, gentle pinks and white palettes, plus a focus on naturalistic designs and a strong health and wellbeing message formed a big part of Chelsea Flower Show this year.

Hang it all!

Saturday, May 7, 2016
Hanging baskets on the exterior of a Victorian cottage. PA Photo/thinkstockphotos

You can buy hanging baskets pretty cheaply these days from garden centres, but the choice of colour and plant is often limited, so it’s much more satisfying to do it yourself.

5 tips for painting garden wood

Saturday, April 23, 2016
Painting a garden fence. PA Photo/thinkstockphotos

Colours for garden wood have come a long way since you could get brown or green and little else. Now you can choose from a myriad of different hues, so your outside space can be just as colourful as the inside.

Gardening in certain ways can help make you fitter. PA Photo/thinkstockphotos

While so many of us pound away in the gym in our efforts to keep fit, burn calories and lose a few pounds, remember there is a great outdoor arena in your garden which can help you do just that.

Stamp out green-fingered theft

Sunday, April 10, 2016
You may not have a forest of rare trees to steal but it would still cost a lot to replace all your plants and ornaments if they were stolen. PA Photo/thinkstockphotos

Each year, property owners lose millions of pounds worth of garden equipment, including mowers, furniture, expensive statuary and ornaments and even York stone paving slabs and turf. Here are ways to minimise the risk of theft:

Daffodils

Spring is in the air, kicking off the busiest time of the year for a gardener. Happily the hard work of preparing your garden for the productive months ahead is softened by the beautiful displays of bulbs that will start popping up about now, says award-winning gardener Kate Gould

Make spring gardening childsplay

Saturday, March 26, 2016
Children being inventive with their choice of planter. PA Photo/Paul Debois

The Easter holidays are upon us and there’s no better time than spring to engage the kids with gardening projects, or take them to outdoor places which will both inspire and delight them.

Fragrant pink honeysuckle flowers. PA Photo/thinkstockphotos

There are some plants that just don’t do very well with traditional propagation from cuttings – rhododendrons, camellias, honeysuckles and daphnes are just a few. But many ‘problem plants’ can be propagated by a method called layering.

Daffodils are synonymous with early spring. PA Photo/thinkstockphotos

Spring is on the horizon so now is the time to prepare your autumn-fruiting raspberries and enjoy the season’s favourite flower – daffodils.

What to do in the garden this week

Saturday, February 27, 2016
A bunch of helleborus flowers

Bring elegant brights to your borders this week, plus your guide to growing perfectly red and sweet rhubarb

Gifts for a green-fingered Valentine

Saturday, February 13, 2016
Peony Red Charm, available from Claire Austin. PA Photo/Handout

So, what to get your green-fingered loved one on Valentine’s Day? Of course, the classic gift is a dozen red roses, but there are many more tokens which will last much longer...

How to get the most from your potato crop

Saturday, February 6, 2016
Potatoes are a relatively easy crop to grow but there are a few common problems that should be avoided. PA Photo/thinkstockphotos

If you’re already ‘chitting’ your seed potatoes and waiting for those valuable shoots to appear on the tubers before planting out, be aware that this process may be the least of your worries.

Skimmia Japonica Berries. PA Photo/thinkstockphotos

Which essential seasonal gardening chores should you do this week and which plants will benefit from a little extra tlc right now?

Careful planning and zoning is essential when designing a small urban garden

Garden designer Kate Gould explores the challenges involved in laying out a small garden

Dyrham Park, Gloucestershire. PA Photo/National Trust Images/Arnhel de Serra

Garden enthusiasts wanting to broaden their horticultural horizons can now travel the world for inspiration, as companies offer holidays which take in everything from gourmet gardens to flower and fruit festivals, plant collections, ecological insights, alpine attractions and botanical wonders.

A blue tit eating from a bird feeder. PA Photo/thinkstockphotos

The unpredictable weather we’ve been experiencing has had an impact on the bird population. Here’s how to boost numbers and tempt them to your garden

Wildflowers

As the trend towards naturalistic gardens continues this year, tidy gardeners with pristine plots may need to chill out a bit if they want to really contribute to the balance of nature.

Gardening trends for 2016

Thursday, January 14, 2016
Monarch Butterflies in a wildife garden. PA Photo/thinkstockphotos

As we plan for new beds, borders, patio plantings and hard landscaping, it’s a good time to find out what followers of fashion will be doing to their gardens in the New Year

Pollination Power by Heather Angel, published by Kew. PA Photo/Kew

As you sit by the fire enjoying your glass of mulled wine and mince pie, now’s a good time to start planning your garden for next year – and there are plenty of ideas out there in books

The best Christmas garden produce

Saturday, December 19, 2015
A holly plant. PA Photo/thinkstockphotos

Don’t neglect your garden this festive season. Here are essential chores of the week and the best Christmas plants

Hibiscus Festive Flair. PA Photo/Thompson and Morgan

The poinsettia has historically been the time-honoured Christmas favourite – but figures suggest it may be falling out of favour. Here are some hip alternatives, and how to care for them

The Winter Garden by Emma Hardy (photography by Debbie Patterson) is published by CICO Books. PA Photo/CICO Books

As the festive season begins, there’s no better time to have a wander in your garden to see what greenery you might be able to use to make your own decorations for your table, windowsill or front door

Amelanchier Ballerina. PA Photo/FrankPMatthews Nursery

If you think that you can only plant a tree if you have a large garden, think again. There’s a plethora of trees out there, which are compact, but look amazing as stand-alone features in a small space, providing colour, texture and form to a smaller garden.

York stone

The weather at this time of year is terrible for grass, so if you’re doing your garden, you may want to consider a patio. Here’s what to consider before cracking on

A garden lawn in the autumn. PA Photo/Handout

So many of us leave our aerating and scarifying until spring, yet lawns will benefit from a pick-me-up now before winter sets in

A female volcano hummingbird feeding on Fuchsia magellanica, in a Costa Rican garden, taken from Pollination Power by Heather Angel, published by Kew. PA Photo/Kew/Heather Angel

A new book uncovering what’s really going on during plant fertilisation

Frost on grass. PA Photo/thinkstockphotos

The first frosts have already arrived in parts of the UK, which is your sign to get tender plants under cover before they succumb to the ravages of winter

Green wall

Traditionally greening up a wall meant using wires or trellis to provide a framework for climbing plants but over the past few years a new technique has taken hold; the vertical green wall.

Old apple varieties in September at Berrington Hall, clockwise from top left, Court of Wick, Crimson Queening, Ashmead's Kernel, Doctor Hares, Downtown Pippin and Cats Head. PA Photo/NTPL/Stephen Robson

October is the month for apple festivals, when National Trust gardens, nurseries, farms and orchards invite the public to taste and buy hundreds of different home-grown varieties, and get tips from top growers on how to reap the best harvests.

Large carrots. PA Photo/thinkstockphotos

All over the country, vegetable growers are harvesting giant marrows, pumpkins, carrots and other whoppers to enter into competitions at autumn shows.

Tea cups can be charming planters

You don’t need a lot of cash to transform your outside space, as West Hampstead-based balcony gardener Isabelle Palmer shows with these tips for creative planting

Carol Klein emptying a wheel-barrow full of leaves onto heap. PA Photo/Jonathan Buckley

Everyone has their favourite wild place and for BBC Gardeners’ World presenter Carol Klein, that place is the woodland

How secure is your garden?

Saturday, August 22, 2015
Make sure your garden shed is secure and insured before you go on holiday. PA Photo/thinkstockphotos

You may think your shed and all your garden contents are covered while you’re away on holiday - but think again, because you may not be sufficiently insured.

Christine Walkden. PA Photo/Handout

As summer progresses, some containers will lose momentum by late July and August, particularly if they haven’t been fed and watered religiously.

A young boy in a garden. See PA Feature

School’s out for summer - but while some parents have every day meticulously planned with activities and time away, others are having ‘staycations’ and trying to coax their children into the garden.

A sprinkler in use in a garden

From re-using bath water to the trusty watering cans, here are some eco-friendly ways to quench your plants

Fresh thyme. PA Photo/thinkstockphotos.

What’s similar about lavender, tansy and lemon balm? They all have healing properties

A cat in a garden. See PA Feature GARDENING Cats. Picture credit should read: PA Photo/thinkstockphotos. WARNING: This picture must only be used to accompany PA Feature GARDENING Cats.

Now, I don’t want to be a killjoy about people’s pets, but when I see a neighbour’s feline stray into my garden, I just want to get my claws out.

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