Chelsea Flower Show 2017 Preview

  I am taking a different approach to my Chelsea Flower Show coverage this year. Recent events and the amount of time I am able to spend at the show have persuaded me to devote more time to enjoying the exhibits and less time casting a critic’s eye over them. Added to which, I have […]

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Tears

“Don’t be ashamed to weep; ’tis right to grieve. Tears are only water, and flowers, trees, and fruit cannot grow without water. But there must be sunlight also. A wounded heart will heal in time, and when it does, the memory and love of our lost ones is sealed inside to comfort us.” ― Brian […]

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Signs of Spring

  I’ve been out of town this weekend, enjoying the delights of Surrey’s innumerable hostelries in the company of my university friends. It’s the 19th year on the trot we’ve held a spring reunion. The occasion took place on Good Friday until we grew up and family commitments started to take precedence. Now we are […]

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RHS Botanical Art Show 2017

  Had I not been a landscape architect, gardener or fashion designer – all professions suggested by my school careers advisor, who was largely at a loss with anyone who didn’t want to be a teacher, lawyer or doctor – I might have been a botanical artist. As a student I possessed extraordinary patience and […]

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Time to Get Growing

As the mornings get lighter my mind is turning once again to thoughts of growing my own. Each morning the first thing I do after getting out of bed is gaze, bleary-eyed, out of the window. Directly below are the raised beds in which we grow vegetables. During the winter I’m never at home during […]

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One Guilty Gardener

  While I am in the mood for confessions, I am going to own up to not setting foot, let along doing any work, in our London garden since the end of September. Our city garden exists purely for the months when we can enjoy it in the morning and evening during the working week, […]

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RHS London Harvest Festival 2016

  Autumn has truly arrived when it’s time for the RHS London Harvest Festival show. This annual event comes at a busy time for me, falling just before I embark on my annual buying trip to India and China. But it’s a good opportunity to reconnect with my inner kitchen gardener and stock up on apples, garlic […]

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Daily Flower Candy: Clematis ‘Inspiration’

  In recent years both gardeners and florists have become better acquainted with non-twining, ‘herbaceous’ clematis. They make excellent border plants, especially in situations where a little height is required, and elegant, long-lasting cut flowers. The main distinction between herbaceous and climbing clematis is that the former do not produce twining leaves and are therefore […]

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Hampton Court Palace Flower Show 2016: Show Gardens – Part I

  I am not a negative individual by nature, but I had misgivings about this year’s Hampton Court Palace Flower Show. Some of the design drawings on the RHS website looked positively ghastly and I am still scarred (or should that be scorched?), by the furnace-like temperatures Helen of Oz and I had to endure […]

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Daily Flower Candy: Clematis ‘Madame Julia Correvon’ AGM

It’s been a vintage year for clematis, in our London garden especially. Plants that have previously performed well but never shone have been turbo-charged by a cool, damp start to the year. They have veritably raced up columns, walls and trees, treating us to lush, unblemished displays of colourful flowers. Non climbing Clematis heracleifolia has almost […]

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