News

The ultimate harvest festival gets under way next weekend

The ultimate harvest festival gets under way this weekend as the RHS Malvern Autumn Show opens its doors for a two-day celebration of all things grow-your- own.

RHS Malvern Autumn Show

A highlight is the UK National Giant Vegetables Championship, where the country’s top vegetable growers vie for honours in growing the longest parsnip, fattest onion or heaviest pumpkin. Last year three world records were broken at the show. The longest beetroot, gro...

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Spending just half an hour a day gardening could reduce your risk of heart attack by over 50%

Spending just half an hour a day gardening could reduce your risk of heart attack by over 50% according to new research.

Researchers studied 2,456 men and women aged between 65 and 74 over 12 years between 1997 and 2007. First they divided them into three groups according to the amount of physical activity they took part in.

Gardening can Improve your Health

The first group had ‘low’ levels of activity of less than four hours a week. The s...

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Get ready to refill the greenhouse

Get ready to refill the greenhouse the moment your summer crops are spent and you can coax an extra crop of leafy veg and salads to see you right through the winter.

Refill your greenhouse 

As you pick the last of your tomatoes and the aubergines and green peppers begin running out of steam, sow hardier varieties of lettuce from seed into pots or modules in the cold frame. You can also start winter baby-leaf salad mixes including oriental vegeta...

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The accounts book used by Lancelot ‘Capability’ Brown is going on display for the first time

The accounts book used by Lancelot ‘Capability’ Brown is going on display for the first time at the Lindley Library in London – and it reveals he was among the 18th century’s richest businessmen, worth over £508 million in today’s money.

Capability Brown

Capability Brown changed the face of British landscape with his sweeping designs remodelling the countryside to include picturesque vistas, lakes and natural-looking serpentine streams. Th...

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What to do in the garden in September

As the sun dips lower, things get busy in the garden again. The autumn harvest needs gathering in, and late summer flowers are at their best - so gear up and get stuck in to this month’s jobs around the garden.

General tasks:

Clean the greenhouse after clearing spent tomato and cucumber plants, washing the glass thoroughly and disinfecting benches and pots.

Feed established lawns with low-nitrogen feed to en...

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A gardener from Stockport, near Manchester, has grown ripe bananas

A gardener from Stockport, near Manchester, has grown ripe bananas in her back yard. Kate Burke, 53, said she couldn’t believe her eyes when the 10-year- old tree began flowering and then producing fruit earlier this summer.

Growing Bananas in the UK

The fruits are about 5cm long - much smaller than they would be in their native countries like the Caribbean, where temperatures average 27°C – considerably warmer than the 9.4°C a...

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Harvest your onions

Harvest your onions as soon as the ramrod-straight leaves start toppling over and turning brown.

Harvest your Onions

This is a sign that the plants are drawing all their goodness down into the bulb at the end of their season – your cue to dig up the lot for storing through winter.

Take your time over lifting and drying the crop, as the slower you do it, the better they’ll keep and the less likely they’ll be to develop rots in storage. Th...

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Keep an eye out for red spider mite

Keep an eye out for red spider mite especially in greenhouses, as this is just the time of year these annoying little sap-sucking pests begin to cause serious damage.

Red Spider Mite!

Signs to look out for are mottled and yellowish leaves, often with little clusters of greenish specks on the undersides. A cobweb-like webbing and early leaf drop are also telltale signs. Red spider mite don’t actually turn red till autumn, by which t...

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Much-loved gardening presenter Geoff Hamilton has been honoured

Much-loved gardening presenter Geoff Hamilton has been honoured with the opening of a new flower border in his memory at the garden he founded, Barnsdale Gardens in Rutland.

The Geoff Hamilton Border

The Geoff Hamilton border commemorates the 20th anniversary of the gardener’s sudden death in 1996, aged 59, after suffering a heart attack on a charity bike ride. Celebrity gardener Carol Klein opened the new border, on the site of th...

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SEPTEMBER – HTA PLANT OF THE MOMENT FASHIONABLY LATE PERENNIALS

Add fresh excitement to your autumn displays by including a selection of seasonal stunners to flower beds and patio pots. Several hardy perennials have been patiently growing all year, waiting for their turn to take centre stage. And now their time has come to burst into bloom, filling our gardens with vibrant colour.

Japanese anemones are always a favourite. Tall and bold, their simple flowers in shades from pink to white really celebrate the season. They...

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