Just a few days from mid summer…………….. another year gone and how quick it has been.

Well we have done the garden related Christmas presents and by now most people have bought their presents.

If you are going away, don’t forget to make sure that the garden is being watered. Don’t panic about the lawn not being mowed because you can do this when you get back even if it is a bit long, the lawn will soon recover on your return. Don’t fertilise the lawn now otherwise it will be really very long and you will need to mow a few times to get it even again.

Watering is so important and because we have had quite a bit of rain lately, does not guarantee that this will be the case for the rest of the holiday.
Group your pots together under irrigation so that they will be watered easily.

To look after indoor plants, place some newspaper into the kitchen sink or the bath, put the plug in and wet the newspaper thoroughly and leave just a small amount of water in the bottom to keep the paper wet. Put all the pots in and water them well. This should stay damp until your return and the plants will stay moist. Don’t leave them standing in deep water otherwise they will just rot.

For those that are staying home………………… settle back and enjoy all the hard work and care that you have done to bring your garden this far. Gardens are so pretty at the moment because there is nothing like rain to clean and perk everything up.

Now, I am already planning and designing gardens for next year. I love to make each garden different but right now I am going through many of the international designers and I love so many of their ideas.

The contemporary look which can be so simple and elegant if you think about level changes and balance between flat lawn areas and organic shapes that will create a visually pleasing result. Explore the potential of your spaces and explore alternatives as even though this might seem to be a challenge, can be so rewarding. Obviously, do a bit of homework in advance to make sure you are on the right track. Homework would be to look at the spaces from all sides, look up and around. Let you imagination get carried away and then refine it as you let the ideas come true.

People often ask me “are you not afraid that your ideas will be copied?” and my reply is always “no” because no two gardens will ever be the same even though you copy the design or planting. Every space is different in that the soil, climate, contours all play a part in making it different. Also each one of us sees our spaces differently. This is the beauty of being an individual.
You do not need to be creative to let your imagination go. It is also a compliment to have someone think your idea good enough to copy. To share plants and knowledge is such a pleasure.

Don’t be in a rush to cut your Agapanthus, Clivia, Amaryllus seed heads off. Wait a while and let them ripen because they grow so easily from seed and you can start growing your own and then next Christmas you can plant them up in pretty pots and give to your gardening friends.

Take cuttings of Hydrangeas, Lavander, Roses and some shrubs and grow these because you will be amazed how successful you can be. Don’t expect 100% result but be happy with what you get and then try again at another time of the year. Get some ‘germination’ mix or make your own (half river sand, half soil) or even some vermiculite and then cut the stem just above a ‘bud’ with a good stem beneath. Use rooting hormone and dip the stem in. Place the cuttings at an angle and wait for about 6 weeks then check for roots and wait for about 5 leaves to form, then plant in small individual pots.

Check your veggies and get some more in now so that you prolong your crop into late summer.

If you have some spaces in the garden, get some seeds to throw in situ.
These could be Zinnias, Cosmos, Nasturtiums, Cleome, Marigolds, Candytuft and Allysum.

Happy Gardening!!