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BBC Gardeners' WorldBBC Gardeners' World

BBC Gardeners' World January 2019

Gardeners' World Magazine is the authoritative voice in gardening, the clear market-leader since it launched in 1991. The award-winning editorial includes topical, practical advice in the readers' favourite 'what to do now' section, and regular contributions and features from the top names in BBC gardening. Packed with fresh ideas and clear advice - the innovative approach offers creative, practical and problem-solving solutions to all keen gardeners.

United Kingdom
Immediate Media Company London Limited
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1 Min.
discover more from gardeners’ world magazine

Year-round bulbs Spring bulbs will burst into life shortly but you can grow bulbs all year. Read more in our special guide. Get yours for £5.99 incl. postage – a £1 saving just for subscribers – by going to bit.ly/GWbulbs Small space ideas Give your garden a new look with the help of our 132-page guide to small spaces, which is packed with projects and inspiration. Get your copy for just £6.99 incl. postage direct from bit.ly/GWspace Highgrove festival We’ve teamed up with Highgrove, home to HRH The Prince of Wales, for the Talking Gardens Festival this April. See our stellar line-up of experts on page 23. Alan’s video guide If you’re impatient to get growing veg, start with spuds! Turn to Alan’s feature on p58 and watch his video guide at bit.ly/plant-spuds PHOTOS: EDITOR’S PORTRAIT BY SARAH…

1 Min.

Like so many of you, I start every new year with intentions to eat healthier. This year, helping birds to do the same is on my list of resolutions. Gardeners can be their lifeline in midwinter, with icy nights and a shortage of natural foods stacked against them. So our actions on this really matter. We spend, as a nation, £297m a year on bird food – that’s a mind-boggling £813,698 a day! We set out to gauge whether we were getting all we expected from our bird food, and whether pricier feeds were worth the money. The results? Well, read more, in our special birds section from page 74, but, in short, there’s some shockingly low-grade feed for sale. Dog biscuits anyone? No, I didn’t expect that either. Only you can…

4 Min.
we love january for frosted tips, berries and bark

STAR OF THE MONTH Inula magnifica ‘Sonnenstrahl’ Sonnenstrahl means ‘sunbeam’ in German. It may be that when looking out of the window on a January day on the hunt for sunbeams, you are disappointed as everything is unremittingly grey. All I can say is that you must sit tight and before you know it there will be sunbeams dancing on every surface, the light will come flooding back, the days of sniffles and extra jumpers will be far behind us, and this plant will be covered in the cheeriest yellow flowers you could ever imagine. In the meantime, it makes, I am sure you will agree, a very handsome seedhead. Happy in a bit of shade with good soil. Sow seed in a cold frame and divide in either spring or autumn. Height…

2 Min.
expert’s choice mahonia

Most mahonias will grow into large plants, but they’re still ideal for small gardens. Sound like a contradiction? Well, read on… Mahonias make bold, often dramatically architectural, foliage plants. Rows of rich green holly-like leaflets are elegantly laid out to make distinctive leaves. Most varieties tend to be upright in growth, spreading more as they mature, so they make fine back-of-the-border focal points – and that’s before we start to think about their other fine features. In late summer, autumn and winter the frost-hardy flowers appear. The most stylish are those producing long, long strings of dainty yellow flowers. Different varieties open from late summer through the winter until as late as March and feature an attractive, though not intense, fragrance that’s said to resemble lily-of-the-valley. They’re popular with winter bees. If sparrows…

4 Min.
the full monty

was listening to the radio the other day, when I caught two geologists being interviewed about the amount of rearranging of earth that man has done. It seems that we have shifted the entire structure of the planet to an enormous extent. The interviewer cheerfully used Stonehenge as an example of this kind of geological rearranging, but the scientists pointed out that in fact they were talking about trillions of tons of rock and earth being moved, mainly as a result of modern-day mining and construction. I thought about my own excavatory exploits with a tinge of shame, but mostly pride and pleasure. I do like a digger and I do like to move, if not mountains, then hillsides that I can hack into. I suspect that this is not…

3 Min.
have your say

Leafmould: take it or leave it When I was young, we used to roam the beech woods and gather up sacks of leaves for leafmould. These days, though, I’m uneasy about the enthusiasm expressed by Monty Don (The Full Monty, November issue). Surely leafmould belongs to its own tree? It depends on it for the fungal ecosystem that sustains it, so I feel we ought to leave it where it is (unless it’s piled up in the gutters). Andrew Blount, London I am the horticulture officer at the award-winning Clifton Park in Rotherham, and we collect our leaves and have huge leafmould piles around the park, which we incorporate into our beds before planting and as a mulch. We have more than we need and members of the public are encouraged to help…