Country Gardener

Widely regarded as the authority on gardening in the south west


The colour purple

Wed, 23/08/2017 - 14:45 Post author: gemmastringer

Smaller and sharper than plums, damsons may not have a lot of charisma but they come alive when they arrive in the kitchen from the garden

Damsons are not a commonly grown fruit, but they were once. They have been grown in England for hundreds of years, and vast orchards existed right up until the Second World war but apparently tastes change.

Thankfully there are signs of a comeback for this very particular fruit.

Let the trumpets sound!

Tue, 22/08/2017 - 08:45 Post author: gemmastringer

Producing masses of huge, fragrant flowers in a range of colours, brugmansias are ideal plants for the greenhouse or summer garden

When you grow brugmansias you get a plant with a big reputation.

Spectacular, easy to grow and relatively easy to get hold of, these ‘angel trumpets’ are part of the Solanaceae family which also contains less glamorous tomatoes and potatoes as well as deadly nightshade.

Jobs in the July garden

Mon, 17/07/2017 - 10:08 Post author: Aidan Gill

Now that the warm summer days are here some of the jobs in the garden will be easy going, pleasant tasks, such as 
dis-budding roses, dahlias, fuchsias, tidying up the herbaceous borders and general watering.

But as the summer growth continues in full swing its also the time to be watchful as the risk of pests and diseases becomes all too all too prevalent and a lot of your hard work in the spring can be wasted.

Gardens on tour!

Mon, 17/07/2017 - 09:53 Post author: Aidan Gill

Summer time, holidays and the chance to cast garden visits a bit wider. We’ve selected seven inspirational gardens for Country Gardener readers around the country which offer something really unique and special.

Lilies – very difficult to ignore!

Mon, 17/07/2017 - 09:24 Post author: Aidan Gill

There are about 100 species of lily available to gardeners with large, spectacular often fragrant flowers. They cover a whole range of colours including whites, yellows, oranges, pinks, reds and purples. Gill Heavens looks at a few of her favourites of Division 9 classification of these wonderful plant varieties.

Subtlety is not something normally associated with lilies, whose Latin name is the relatively simple to remember - Lilium.  

Top 10 cut flowers to grow at home

Mon, 17/07/2017 - 08:51 Post author: Aidan Gill

A vase of fresh flowers cut straight from the garden can instantly make a house feel more like a home. So it’s surprisingly that more people don’t try growing their own cut flowers. There are plenty of cut flowers that you can grow at home, but if you need some inspiration take a look at our top 10 favourites. 

You don’t need to be a florist to get the best from your cut flowers either. There are lots of handy tips that you can employ to make your blooms last longer. Here are a just a few to get you started.

Colour in the late summer garden

Wed, 12/07/2017 - 09:52 Post author: gemmastringer

Don’t say goodbye to the colour and wonders of your high summer garden. With a bit of planning you can still have vibrant colours right through to early autumn and beyond

How often have you hear gardeners say ‘Oh my garden looks its best in spring’.

Late-summer drabness is often taken for granted and by July we are saying there’s nothing to look forward to.

Which is of course nonsense. Why waste your garden's best performance on the matinee? Hold it back for the main event: August, when it's warm enough to sit out and enjoy it.

Worming your way to great compost!

Thu, 06/07/2017 - 11:08 Post author: gemmastringer

Elizabeth McCorquodale looks at the efficient and hugely popular method of turning kitchen waste into high quality compost with your own wormery

For those of us who don’t generate enough garden waste to feed a compost heap or have no space to put one, a wormery is a very efficient method of dealing with kitchen waste and garden debris and as a bonus it provides a free and renewable source of garden soil conditioner into the bargain.

King of the soft fruits

Tue, 20/06/2017 - 19:14 Post author: Aidan Gill

A single, well established healthy blackcurrant bush will yield 10lbs of fruit every year and will stay productive for 20 years. It is what makes it one of the most popular of all the soft fruits grown in our gardens.

Blackcurrant bushes are very easy to please. And boy do they show their appreciation of being looked after!

Ten pounds of fruit per bush is a very generous supply of blackcurrants from which you can make countless jars of jam from, and the fruits are also ideal for freezing, juicing, adding to yogurts and so on.


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