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Amateur Gardening

Amateur Gardening 20-Jul-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.

United Kingdom
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51 Issues

In this issue

2 min.
keep perennials performing

AFTER six years of culling, planting and renovating, our borders are starting to become a realisation of the colourful combinations we originally imagined. Low-growing perennials interspersed with bedding plants provide a carpet of colour topped by lanky scabious and Verbena bonariensis , whose flowers seem to float above the beds. I am particularly thrilled that some freesias planted earlier in the year are flourishing, their signature scent and glossy petals bringing something more exotic to the party. Perennials come into their own in summer, and as a whole are some of the most easy-going plants in the garden. Apart from tender types such as pelargoniums and gazanias that may require lifting and storing through winter, most can be left alone and will perform throughout the summer. They will be at their best if…

1 min.
dividing a clump of irises

1 Dig all the way around the plant so you can lift it with soil attached and without damaging the roots. 2 Once the plant is out, replenish its replanting site with plenty of well-rotted compost or manure. 3 Divide the plant using a spade or knife or insert two garden forks back to back and lever them apart. 4 Replant divisions to the same depth as before, in a hole large enough to accommodate all their roots. 5 Infill around the roots with soil and compost, firming it down as you go and heel-treading around the plant. 6 Water generously and don’t let the ground dry out while the divisions get established.…

1 min.
perennial problems

Healthy perennials should be able to shake off most pest and disease attacks but the British summertime can throw up problems for even the most robust plants. Busy beds clustered with many plants can fall foul of fungal problems such as powdery mildew and botrytis, especially when the weather is humid. Bolster plants with regular watering and by not planting them with plenty of space, so there is good airflow between each one. Remove and destroy affected material and use a fungicide such as Scotts Fungus Clear Ultra on extreme infections. Check regularly for pests, picking snails off during torchlight dusk patrols and squishing aphids between your fingers. Many pest predators, such as hoverflies whose larvae eat aphids, flock to perennials for their nectar and pollen, so avoid using chemicals where possible.…

1 min.
commemorative d-day garden arrives at its final home

A COMMEMORATIVE garden created by the veterans’ charity D-Day Revisited has moved to a permanent site on the Normandy coast. The D-Day 75 Garden, which was unveiled at the Chelsea Flower Show, was re-located and rebuilt in seven days by its designer John Everiss, with help from the Royal Engineers. It now sits above Arromanches overlooking Gold Beach and the famous Mulberry Harbour. The stunning garden combines sculpted tributes for D-Day veterans as they are today and as they were 75 years ago. Two life-size sculptures bookmark the entrance. To one side, a veteran modelled on Bill Pendell sits on a stone plinth, proudly wearing his medals and beret. He looks across at an image of himself as a young soldier, constructed from thousands of individually welded metal washers. The young figure pauses…

2 min.
the research behind garden success

WHEN you pick your garden products off the shelf, do you ever consider the finance and research that goes into their production? Last month, AG was invited behind the scenes at the Evergreen research centre based in Levington in Suffolk. This is where the company behind the Miracle-Gro, Tomorite, Roundup and Roseclear create and test their products. The site comprises laboratories, greenhouses and a vast testing area where weedkillers, grass feeds, herbicides, pesticides and fertilisers are put through their paces. When we visit the lawncare research side of the site is pegged out into squares ready to test fertilisers and weedkillers (one area has been seeded with different weed varieties to check their robustness) and in a large tilled area staff are planting asters in preparation for fungicide trials. Testing, testing… It is slow, thorough…

1 min.
gardeners can help stall plant extinction

PLANT species are facing extinction at unprecedented levels, say scientists who have carried out a global analysis of the issue. Human expansion is largely responsible for the disappearance of over 570 known species since the Industrial Revolution. Experts believe that this is a vast underestimation of the real number, which is ‘bad news’ for the planet. “Plants underpin all life on Earth,” said Dr Eimear Nic Lughadha, who was part of the analytic team from Kew Gardens and Stockholm University. “They provide the oxygen we breathe and the food we eat, as well as making up the backbone of the world’s ecosystems – so plant extinction is bad news for all species.” Hawaii tops the ‘extinction table’, with 79 plant species reported to have vanished. This is followed by the South African Cape, which…