Plant advice articles


Lifting, Dividing and Planting Irises

If you have an iris that is too big, stopped flowering, or needs moving, in my opinion September is the best month to do this in the UK. This does not mean they cannot be lifted at any other time of the year. I have lifted irises from 6 weeks after flowering, right through to early spring without harming the plant.

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Asters are a must for the autumn border. Shaped like a daisy, the flowers can be as small as a 5 pence piece or bigger than a 50 pence piece. The colours tend to be in the blue/lilac or purple bracket, with a good choice of pink tones and white, but no yellow or true reds.

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How To Grow Irises

Irises are beautiful, often flamboyant plants that are easy to grow given the right place. There are three types of irises; ones with beards, ones without beards and ones that grow from bulbs.

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Mention to a gardener that you like Bergenias (Elephant ears) and you get a long, confused stare as though to say ‘what those boring things!’ But I really do like and respect these robustly formed, immensely useful plants.

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Campanula (Bellflower)

There are lots of types of Campanulas, all of which provide the border with a flowery, cottage feel. The other name for this variable bunch is Bellflower for the obvious reason as the flowers are bell-shaped.

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Tree Peonies

The term Tree Peony is a little confusing as it seems to describe a plant that grows to the height of a tree, which it does not. The main difference between Tree Peonies and their herbaceous cousins is that Tree peonies don’t die back in winter.

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Centaurea (Knapweed)

These free-flowering, clump-forming plants can be divided into two groups: tall and upright with large, knob-like flowers or short and mounding with flat, wheel-like flowers.

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Twice Flowering Irises

When it comes to choosing irises, most gardeners go for the big, blousy Tall Bearded varieties that flower in June. It is quite easy to forget that some varieties of bearded irises will also produce a second flush of blooms from August onwards. These are known as remontant irises.

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What happens when I place my order?

When you place an order it goes into a pile with other orders. These are then collated into one ‘pulling’ list. We then go outside, onto the stock beds, and ‘pick’ the plants on the list ......

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