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Amateur GardeningAmateur Gardening

Amateur Gardening

19-Oct-2019

Every week, Amateur Gardening is the first choice for both beginners and knowledgeable gardeners looking for advice and easy-to-follow practical features on growing flowers, trees, shrubs as well as fruit and vegetables. Be inspired, by our beautifully illustrated features covering plant and flower groups, both home grown and exotic, and take a sneak peek into some of the most beautiful private gardens around the country. Plus, every week we feature expert opinion and tips from some of gardening’s most influential exponents including Toby Buckland, Bob Flowerdew, Anne Swithinbank, Peter Seabrook and Jo Whittingham.

Country:
United Kingdom
Language:
English
Publisher:
TI-Media
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51 Issues

IN THIS ISSUE

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keep on top of pests and diseases

HERE in the South of England we were lucky enough to enjoy an Indian summer that helped prolong the real thing by several weeks. However, now autumn is truly upon us, with shorter chillier days when evening’s dews take longer to shift and the garden seems to have a constant cloak of dampness. This isn’t so bad on breezy days because moving air helps to dry things out a little, but on still days the moisture lingers from sunrise to sunset, even when the temperatures are mild. Problems can develop in the warmth and wet, because they create perfect conditions for fungal diseases and loitering slugs and snails. You can help thwart these problems by improving ventilation around your garden – removing weeds and dead annuals and pruning once plants are dormant – and…

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winter pond prep…

Keep pond water free of excess debris and algae-forming nutrients by cutting back fading plants. Leave the plants pond-side so any beasties can escape back to the water, then compost them. Scoop out fallen autumn leaves or place a net above the water to catch them. Lift tender aquatic plants and overwinter them in trays of deep mud or damp sand – even a bucket of water will help see them through. Remove, clean and store filters and lights, and test your water to check that the nutrient balance is correct.…

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four ways to beat problems

1 If roses have black spot, collect and burn or bin all fallen leaves and cut back affected stems. Botrytis is another fungal problem that thrives in still, humid conditions, so think of ways you can improve ventilation around plants. 2 Warm and damp conditions are perfect for slugs and snails. Pick them off plants or drown them in slug traps. Welcome hedgehogs that will gobble them up as they fatten up before hibernation. 3 Bird diseases thrive on birdbaths and feeders and are quickly spread by flocks of hungry birds. Refill birdbaths with fresh water each day and wash birdfeeders in a mild disinfectant solution once a week. 4 Houseplants aren’t immune to problems. Check for scale insects, mealybugs and glasshouse red spider mite. Wipe leaves to remove pests and residual grime,…

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a tidy border

1 Cut away the scruffy long grass at the edge of beds. It’s an instant way of smartening up the garden and gets rid of lurking pests. 2 Although we always say leave some spent perennials standing to leave seeds and shelter for birds and insects, cut off rotting and damaged ones. 3 Removing dead summer annuals allows a healthier airflow around perennial and winter plants, and removes a hideaway for pests and diseases. 4 Keep on weeding, as weeds will keep growing through winter, especially if it’s mild.…

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keeping your lawn going

WINTER can be damaging for lawns, but prompt work in autumn can help them through the worst. Toadstools may erupt if, as happened to us, there are the roots of a dead or felled tree underneath. Although unsightly, they soon die back and will stop appearing once the woody matter is eaten up. This is your last chance to scarify the lawn (rake up thatch and dead grass to let more air down to the roots) and it is too late to sow new grass in all but the mildest areas. Mow on mild, dry days with the blades raised. Don’t tread on worm casts. Let them dry and brush them away with a broom or the back of a rake.…

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essential cuttings

MOST plants are shutting up shop for winter, which makes the weeks between now and late winter (just before buds start to swell and open) the perfect time for propagating climbers, roses, shrubs, trees and fruit bushes. We do so via hardwood cuttings, a slow but simple way of making more plants. They can be rooted in the ground or in a clay pot of cuttings compost mixed with sharp sand or perlite. With a little care, they should be ready to pot on by next autumn. The cuttings should be grown from healthy lengths of this year’s growth that has had time to mature through summer. If you are rooting cuttings in the soil, dig a trench in a sheltered spot and fork in some well-rotted organic matter. Line the trench with…

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