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Amateur GardeningAmateur Gardening

Amateur Gardening


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.

United Kingdom
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51 Issues


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“In mid-March I planted up 23 bags with a mixture of first earlies, second earlies and maincrop potatoes. Each week, as foliage broke the surface, I added soil on top and adjusted the height of the bag. It’s an enjoyable process, watching the growth every week. However, two bags had no growth at all. I left them for weeks, patiently waiting for something to appear. Last week I couldn’t bear it any longer and investigated, only to discover that I hadn’t put any tubers in! Oh well, 21 bags left.”…

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don’t give the pests a holiday

I’m getting ready to plant scented herbs around our main seating area Keep moving on your seedlings THE Whitsun Bank Holiday always feels like more of an event that the break at the start of May, and with hopefully better weather too there’s lots to be getting on with outside.The long weekend offers the perfect opportunity to start thinking about what you want from the garden over the summer. Yes, there will be weeding, deadheading and watering to do, of course, but there could also be some fun stuff to get stuck in to. French lavender is such a delightLook at seating areas and decide whether your furniture needs an overhaul, and if there’s room for some pots of scented plants to make evening meals al fresco that bit…

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stop early pests in their tracks

Deter lily beetles with Grazers G4 Always use slug pellets sparingly THE garden is full of tempting young shoots and the pests are on the prowl, so this is an excellent time to stop a few of the blighters becoming an infestation.If you have to use chemicals, do so responsibly, following manufacturers’ instructions carefully and not using them on windy days when spray can carry, or on plants in bloom when you endanger pollinators and pest predators too.You only have until 30 June 30 to buy slug pellets containing metaldehyde as they have been declared an ‘unacceptable risk to birds and mammals’ by DEFRA. Old stock in your shed must be used within 12 months, or handed to your local authority waste team for safe disposal.Alternative pellets containing ferric…

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looking after garden wildlife

Make sure birds have enough food and water during the breeding season Garden animals and birds are busy rearing families and we can help see them through.Keep bird feeders filled with fresh food and make sure there’s fresh water in birdbaths. Leave out water for hedgehogsDuring hot, dry periods, place fresh water in quiet wild areas for hedgehogs and leave them meaty cat and dog food or kibble, never mealworms.Specific hedgehog food is also available.If you have cats, please make sure they have bells on their collars and keep them indoors at night.…

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how to use long-life vine weevil nematodes

1 The nematodes (tiny, predatory roundworms) come in two Ziploc bags with a full set of instructions. Each sachet will treat 6m sq. 2 Put 3 pints (1.5l) of water in a bucket and drop in one of the sachets (remove it from its bag first), leaving it to soak for five minutes. 3 Then stir the solution for up to three minutes until it turns an opaque, milky colour. It is now ready to decant and dilute. 4 Decant a third of the solution into a watering can with a coarse sprinkler attached, filled to 4.5l with clean water. 5 Pour the solution onto already-dampened compost in the pots you want to treat, repeating until all the solution is used up. 6 Once…

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councils drag feet over pot recycling

Most black plastic plant pots are still ending up in landfill Many garden centres recycle pots MOST coloured plastic plant pots are still ending up in landfill, despite the horticultural industry’s moves to make them recyclable.A survey found that more than 80% of local authorities are still refusing to recycle the pots, even though plant suppliers are now starting to use recyclable grey, or ‘taupe’ pots.The issue was first raised when councils realised their recycling equipment couldn’t spot black plastic. New recyclable taupe potsRoughly 500 million plastic pots are produced each year and 80 councils were surveyed about their recycling policies. Excuses used for why the pots end up in landfill include the plastic being too rigid, of poor quality and even too dirty to recycle. Creating a…