The Reluctant Grower

The Reluctant Grower

    So I will be honest. The above shows the state of my vegetable patch. Despite working professionally as a gardener, I specialise in ornamental plants and I am a reluctant grower. Those who know me will often have heard me cast doubt as 

Cutting Back

Cutting Back

  No, this isn’t a post about austerity. It’s the time of year when you look outside and see that the garden no longer looks full and vibrant. It just looks like it needs to be … a bit tidier. That’s not just the falling 

Dreaming of next spring — Bulb planting

Dreaming of next spring — Bulb planting

  This is an exciting time of year: While the garden is beginning to look like it is fading after the summer, you can start preparing a blaze of colour for next year, by planting spring and summer flowering bulbs. Bulbs are usually vibrant flowerers 

Container Gardens – My Top 5 Tips

Container Gardens – My Top 5 Tips

  A few people have asked me about “Container Gardening” (that’s plants in pots, in case it sounds technical), so I thought I should write an initial piece. It’s a huge topic and there are many experts who can help you along the way, so 

Pondering a wet April

Pondering a wet April

  So now it’s wet. Very wet. And before it was cold. Very cold. It’s really left me pondering about how the garden will go in the coming months and what I should focus on now. My diaries from recent Aprils are full of sun 

Back to school – in modern times

Back to school – in modern times

    This month I’ve signed up to start studying again. I’m going to do my RHS Level 3 Certificate in Garden Planning, Construction and Planting. I’ve been an unusually long time deciding to take on the course and there are quite a few reasons 

Snowdrops – heralding an approaching spring

Snowdrops – heralding an approaching spring

    A really gratifying task at this time of year is working with snowdrops. Snowdrops (Galanthus) are a beautiful winter-flowering plant. My excitement bubbles up on seeing them because they feel also like the first heralds of an approaching spring. Other gardeners have commented 

Why I can’t get enough of Yew:  Assessing your garden in winter

Why I can’t get enough of Yew: Assessing your garden in winter

  If looking out at your garden in winter is making you unhappy, it may be time to take stock of your seasonal selection. Gardens, especially more traditional English gardens, can be synonymous with flowers. But it is worth paying as much attention to structure 

Kerala: Forest Garden, Home Garden, Fantasy Garden

Kerala: Forest Garden, Home Garden, Fantasy Garden

  Just before I left on my holiday to India, a former colleague from Oxford Botanic Garden pointed out that Kerala is an area of great horticultural interest for its “forest gardens”. These are sustainable gardens around a residential house, from which the owners either 

Delhi’s Street Trees

Delhi’s Street Trees

      Delhi is incredibly green compared to my expectations. New Delhi is spread out, with tree-lined streets and frequent parks. This is no accident. When the new city was designed and built, avenues of trees were a major part of the plans. Specific