The sun is still high and the greenhouse lush and jungly, but it is time to start looking ahead to winter, and to what I will be eating from the garden then. The greenhouse must be pressed into service for nurturing young plants again, if I can only find some space… Happily with the weather […]
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The other day I strolled along a path between plants as tall as my shoulders, like a sea of green grasses with colorful swells of yellow coneflowers and black-eyed Susans, white ironweed and Indian plaintain, purple milkweed, and orange butterfly weed. Butterflies twinkled–monarchs, painted ladies, swallowtails—and bumblebees plodded from flower to flower. On the marsh […]
Jean Vernon explains the whys and wherefores of deadheading your garden plants It’s a term bandied about a lot in summer – deadheading. But what does it actually mean and why do we need to do it? Deadheading is all about keeping your summer plants flowering, more specifically your annual plants but not always. It’s […]
I’m always pleased when I discover beautiful ornamental plants in my garden that are also delicious to eat. So, last month, at a Hardy Plant Study Weekend in Portland, OR, I was happy to attend a presentation by Stacey Hirvela called “Incidentally Edible.” Stacey is a marketing specialist for Proven Winners Colorchoice Shrubs, and the […]
A classic greenhouse and conservatory flowering shrub Nerium oleander has adorned gardens in its native Mediterranean since Classical times. First noted as ‘introduced’ here in the sixteenth century Neriums became popular in early glasshouses for their very long flowering period. More so when they found Oleanders will force out of season. Thus Neriums soon became […]
Blossom End Rot, where the end of tomatoes becomes circular, black and flattened, occurs in peppers and aubergines, squashes and watermelons but is most often seen in tomatoes. It is caused by lack of calcium in the fruits. Plants in soil, growing bags and potting composts rarely lack a supply of calcium but what they […]
You can easily grow your own greenhouse mango tree. If you decide to grow a mango the first step is to find a suitable mango. Most mangoes grown in America, according to the National Mango Board (www.mango.org) are either ‘Tommy Atkins’ or ‘Palmer.’ Tommy Atkins has slightly green and orange-red skin than does Palmer, which […]
One of the great things about owning a Hartley greenhouse is the sense of escape in a modern world fraught with difficulty. It’s like your own miniature TARDIS and when you walk down the garden path and through the door you’re lost in another world. It doesn’t matter about the vagaries of the British climate […]
As global heating escalates, we can’t go on gardening as usual. It’s time for disruptive gardeners’ questions – and for some serious answers from our ‘experts’. ‘Thought I’d never make it!’ A middle-aged, tanned and fragrant woman slid in through the back door. ‘What’s going on out the front?’ She dabbed sweat from her forehead. ‘We’re […]
In the hottest July on record, you might expect me to be sweating about watering my plants enough so they can keep cool. But thunderstorms have been taking care of that. Instead, what I’m steamed about is winter hardiness. Brrrr! The issue of hardiness has been on display the summer in my hydrangeas. I have […]
Every day now we are reaping the rewards of the greenhouse and having fresh and green summer veg for our lunch. The harvesting itself is not necessarily from the greenhouse right now – though there is a little of that as the pots of strawberries that we put in there to protect them from the […]
Part of the delight in growing hardy cactus, for me anyway, comes in not having to move pot-grown specimens into the conservatory as the temperature drops. The hardy sorts of opuntia (aka prickly pear cactus) are especially attractive and common throughout the intermountain and prairie regions of the West. Opuntia aurea, hardy from Zone 5-10, […]