Monthly Archives: November 2013

  • Create a winter wonderland

     
    The low golden sun shining and sparkling on frosty hedges, branches and foliage is a wonder of the season, and is something to be truly celebrated.

    The lyrics to "In the bleak midwinter" don't offer the best encouragement for getting out in the garden. But with a few thoughtful planting choices you can be "Walking in a winter wonderland!"

    Although you may not want to be out in the garden that much in the depths of winter, it is still important to provide yourself with enticing views from the house.

    Most important are front gardens and pathways to your doors. These are places that - in rain, sleet and snow - you'll be passing through on a daily basis.

    And it's where you welcome your visitors. These are places you want to feel proud of, and to get great enjoyment from, in all seasons.
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  • Winter pruning: Don't cut corners...

     

    Winter pruning

    Clean up those secateurs for a decent
    bit of winter pruning

    To non gardeners it may not be obvious, but autumn can be one of the busiest times of year in the garden, and pruning is one of the most important tasks of the season.

    There are many trees and shrubs that need pruning or renovating in their dormant period if they are to avoid stress and recover before growth begins again in spring.

    Left unpruned, deciduous trees and shrubs can become leggy and unattractive, with soft and top fruit becoming unproductive and susceptible to disease.

    When carrying out your pruning it is really important to use clean sharp tools that will not leave any jagged edges that could prove an easy entry for infection.
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  • Get planting for National Tree Week 2013!

     

    National Tree Week

    National Tree Week 2013 runs from 23 November
    through to 1 December ... get involved!

    National Tree Week is the UK's largest celebration of trees, and is organised by The Tree Council.

    Running from 23 November to 1 December it heralds the start of the British tree planting season.

    This countrywide event is a chance for people of all ages to get involved in all manner of fun tree-related events.

    In addition to The Tree Council, events are being organised by local authorities, community groups, schools and tree wardens – so there's likely to be something happening near you.

    The main purpose of this week is to raise awareness of the importance of trees and to inspire hundreds of thousands of people all over the country to plant around a million trees in their local communities.
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  • Urban gardening: Cities with a soft fruit centre

     

    Country hedges have been full of fruit this year,
    but where are the berries in our cities?

    London-based urban gardener, Dan Combes, wonders why there aren't more berries in city centres...

    Towns and cities of Britain, why aren't we cultivating more soft fruits?

    Over the last the two weeks I have planted thousands of bulbs. But why (London, I'm talking to you especially) am I not planting soft fruits? It is the perfect time to put in berries and currants.

    As I write our native flora is abound with fruit. I have never seen our hedgerows so stocked. Clusters of red fruits weigh down hawthorn branches. Rose hips wreath their way through the arms of blackthorn, with their sloes ready to bring the best out of gin.

    And although the elderberries are long gone they deserve a mention. Often slightly sour, this year they were sweet enough to be eaten by the handful.
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