Amateur Gardening 1-May-2021

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.

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51 Números

en este número

1 min.

“Our love of nature (and the desire to create, encourage and nurture it within our garden) is the source of many good things. There are the health benefits: both physical and mental, as well as benefits to the environment and its flora and local fauna. This week, I discovered a previously unknown benefit: it inspires poetry! When we published a reader’s poem a couple of weeks ago, I encouraged others to submit theirs, and the first piece is in this week’s Letters (page 53) So you see, gardening inspires creative writing as well as being healthgiving. I wonder what other benefits it has?”…

2 min.
essential jobs for now

WHAT a difference a year makes! This time 12 months ago we were in the first lockdown, garden centres were closed and in a perfect storm of chaos, garden websites were crashing under the demand of millions of new gardeners! Hopefully this year there are still lots of new gardeners out there, but you are finding it easier to source plants and products as life starts to open up again. The first May bank holiday is here and the three-day weekend offers gardeners old and new the opportunity to catch up on late spring tasks and get their plots ready for the months ahead. For me, the bank holiday will be a mixture of plant care and general garden maintenance, keeping the patio clean, winkling out the weeds, making sure the borders are…

1 min.
nine jobs for a three-day weekend

1 As well as edging your lawn, dig a trench around your borders to give them extra definition and make it easier to keep the edges sharp. 2 Make sure perennials, such as clematis, have adequate support as they grow. Cut back penstemons to new growth, then water and mulch. 3 Pinch out plugs so encourage them to become bushy. Check undercover strawberry plants are healthy for earlier fruits than those outside. 4 Relocate plants that have self-seeded in the wrong place, such as these foxgloves that were growing tangled up in a lavender bush. 5 Remove the top few inches of old compost from long-term containers and replace with fresh, then water with a natural feed such as EcoGrow. 6 Sow squash and courgettes in large modules, 1 or 2 seeds per module, and…

3 min.
a decade of helping hogs

A WILDLIFE charity dedicated to saving the UK’s hedgehogs is celebrating its 10th anniversary and asking AG readers to join their campaign. This year marks the 10th birthday of Hedgehog Street, a nationwide campaign launched by wildlife charities People’s Trust for Endangered Species (PTES) and the British Hedgehog Preservation Society (BHPS). Its aim is to encourage people to become ‘Hedgehog Champions’ who make their gardens more hedgehog-friendly to help stop the ongoing decline of Britain’s favourite mammal. The latest State of Britain’s Hedgehogs report, published in 2018 revealed that 50% of rural hedgehog populations and 30% of urban hedgehog populations have been lost since 2000. In 2020, hedgehogs were listed as ‘vulnerable to extinction’ on the Red List for Britain’s Mammals. Do ten things to help Several complex factors are contributing to this decline, including the…

3 min.
dealing with late frosts

THE Easter weekend showed us how fickle the UK’s weather can be. One day we were gardening in shorts and getting excited about summer plantings, the next we were back in woolly layers watching snow floating down outside. May can be just as bad, especially further north where late frosts can be commonplace on the clear nights. So keep a weather eye on the daily forecast and don’t pack away your garden insulation just yet! Hard frosts damage new growth and can be devastating to anything that isn’t totally hardy that has already been planted out without being adequately hardened off. Cloches are excellent for protecting single tender plants in borders, such as evergreen agapanthus and penstemons that have already had their old growth cut back. You can also insulate their roots with…

2 min.
ready for an exotic summer

GLORIOUS exotic dahlias and cannas are some of the most splendid plants in the garden, packing a glossy punch whenever they flower. Despite their startling and long-lasting good looks that keep going until the autumn, these plants are tender so it is still a bit too early to plant them out just yet, but you need to be keeping an eye on their growth. If you potted up their tubers and rhizomes earlier in spring and have been growing them undercover, their shoots should be pretty well developed now. Keep their compost damp and check tender young leaves for pests such as greenfly and snails. In a few weeks you can gradually acclimatise them to life outside, but for now, they need to be safe from late frosts. You should also keep ready-grown plants…