Kevin Fortey Mandy

Harrogate Autumn Flower Show 2017 review

Saucy secrets to growing monster veg!

Huge veg growing owes a debt to bras and tights – that’s the best thing I learnt at this year’s Harrogate Autumn Flower Show. Continue reading “Harrogate Autumn Flower Show 2017 review”

Balance Awareness Week

Balance Awareness Week 2017

Defeat dizziness and raise funds for balance disorders

It’s Balance Awareness Week (BAW17) next week, from September 18-24 – what has that to do with gardening, you may ask? Continue reading “Balance Awareness Week 2017”

Shield Row Allotment Association winning leeks

Review: Beamish Museum leek show

A taste (and smell) of working-class life

Winners of the Beamish Museum show. Picture; Sue Welford

That smell of good soil, damp canvas, assorted alliums, and chrysanthemums can only mean one thing – a leek show – and it transports me way back to my childhood.

The traditional North East leek shows aren’t as common as they once were, with the decline of the pits, heavy industry and the working men’s club but they survive.

And thanks to Beamish Museum, everyone can see the glory of monster veg and perfect flowers.There are effectively two shows at the Pit Village – the museum’s own, and Shield Row Allotment Association’s.

There are effectively two shows at the Pit Village – the museum’s own, and Shield Row Allotment Association. Continue reading “Review: Beamish Museum leek show”

September 2017 bumper berry harvest

Autumn-fruiting berries are plentiful says RHS

Blackberry Loch Maree
Blackberry Loch Maree – very early and lots of them

I’m sure you’ve noticed this if you have autumn-fruiting berries in your garden and the Royal Horticultural Society (RHS) has predicted to a bumper harvest this month.

Raspberries, blackberries, and dotberries are performing very well in my garden, due to a warm and dry start to the year followed by a wet July and August.

Other berry-yielding plants for wildlife doing well are spindle bushes (Euonymus) and firethorn (Pyracantha).
Continue reading “September 2017 bumper berry harvest”

RHS Wisley: plea to save trees from A3 road plan

Sign petition to save garden’s historic woodland

The Rock Garden and Wild Garden at Wisley in autumn. Picture; RHS/Carol Sheppard

Gardeners have been asked to sign a petition to save one of the country’s most iconic gardens from road widening plans which could see more than 10,000 sqm of woodland lost.

Highways England (HE) plans to widen the A3 next to the Royal Horticultural Society’s Wisley, a Grade II listed garden, in Surrey.

If the development goes ahead, more than 500 trees Continue reading “RHS Wisley: plea to save trees from A3 road plan”

Native plants and ‘lazy’ gardening best for wildlife

RHS study backs the sloppy gardener!

Mandy's garden August 2017
Stuff your garden full of plants and let them grow – my garden, August 2017

I’m always banging on about not being so controlling in the garden and it seems the Royal Horticultural Society (RHS) is agreeing with me (for once). Continue reading “Native plants and ‘lazy’ gardening best for wildlife”