Dazzling Dahlias

As you know, we both adore dahlias: sadly they don’t adore our garden. Dahlias appreciate a little elbow room and plenty of sunshine to grow well, neither of which they readily find at The Watch House. One recent garden visitor, pointing to Dahlia ‘Firepot’, exclaimed ‘everything looks so healthy …… apart from this poor thing!’. […]

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Plant Profile: Salvia leucocephala

Late last summer we paid a flying visit to Dyson’s Nurseries at Great Comp near Sevenoaks in Kent. It was all rather unsatisfactory as we were short of time and had our pups Max and Millie in tow. We couldn’t take them into the garden (although I snuck in to use the loo, which was […]

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Hello from The Beau

Dan, in a moment of madness, has decided that he would like me to contribute now and again to his Frustrated Gardener blog. As I am also a keen gardener, I decided to accept his kind offer, and so here I am. For me, gardening has always been a pleasure and a joy, unless my […]

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Dixter Addiction

I’d missed one too many plant fairs at Great Dixter, so I was not about to forgo another. We made plans, reorganised others, kept an eagle eye on the weather, confirmed that dogs were welcome and set off for Sussex shortly after breakfast on Saturday. A smooth drive took us through some of the prettiest […]

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Plants In Detail – Dahlia ‘Akita’

One aspect of gardening in a small space that I enjoy most is that no detail goes unnoticed. Whilst this counts equally for annoying flaws and moments of near-perfection, there is as much joy for me in the emergence of a new leaf or the opening of a single flower bud as there is in […]

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New Plants At The Watch House: August 2019

Both gardens were overflowing with plants long before August arrived. There was a point at which getting from the garden gate to the front door was such an ordeal that even The Beau started to lose patience with me. At the end of July I reluctantly declared that I was going on plant diet, or, […]

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The Watch House NGS Open Weekend 2019

And relax! After several weeks of intensive preparation, another National Gardens Scheme open weekend lies behind us. Rather like Christmas there’s an almighty build-up and then the event itself is over in the blink of an eyelid. In total we welcomed 440 visitors to The Watch House and raised just over £2000 for NGS charities. […]

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The Diary of a Plant Addict

If my blog did not already have a title, ‘The Diary of a Plant Addict’ would be a strong candidate. I’ve had the most horticulturally indulgent week one could imagine, starting with the Chelsea Flower Show and ending with a three day stretch getting my own garden in shape for summer. In the middle came […]

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Violet Time

One of the many frustrations of having flu is that everything tastes and smells odd. Apparently viral particles linger longer in the nose and mouth than they do in the blood, altering and inhibiting the recognition of flavours and fragrances long after one’s physical recovery has begun. Whatever causes this phenomenon, it does make one […]

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Winter Heliotrope: Petasites fragrans

What better way to start the New Year at The Frustrated Gardener than with a plant that flowers through the darkest, coldest months. The winter heliotrope, Petasites fragrans, is so called because it produces tiny clusters of flower that are said to smell like cherry pie. I don’t quite make that culinary connection, but it’s […]

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