Great British Garden Revival

I am not sure if it is a common perception but due to working within the horticultural industry, it is clear that here in Britain we are a nation of gardeners. With the development of the industrial sector and the new homes within our largest towns and city centres; space is now at a premium. However, new and innovative concepts such as an urban gardening, balcony growing, growing plants on your windowsill, and products such as our Tower Pot™, mean that space is no longer a required component to gardening.

Episode 1 of the Great British Garden Revival discussed the nation’s favourite flower, the rose. We live in a world that seeks new innovations, whether it is having the latest smart phone or fashion trend and I think this the same for our choice of flowers. We don’t like to feel that we are missing out on something and with our focus on new varieties, traditional varieties are taking a back-seat and we are at risk of losing them from our gardens forever.

Rose the one and onlySo, roses. I have to admit I fall in love with roses every time I see them. There are over 1,000 cultivars of rose, from trailing to shrubs there is a variety to suit most requirements. The first episode featured traditional climbing rose varieties such as Crimson Glory. With deep crimson blooms, this older variety is beautiful and the fragrance is simply divine! However, even though older roses tend to have amazing fragrance, they can lack in vigour and good disease resistance. This is when we see the newer varieties take centre stage with the best of best of both worlds. Hardy rose variety Rose ‘The One and Only’ has flowers rich with crimson-red petals that give the appearance of an old-fashioned English rose. They are renowned for their scent, as this hybrid tea rose is like no other – fruity and indulgent. That being said, every rose has something to offer to the garden and we all have our own favourites. Have you got a favourite rose?

narcissue tete-a-teteEpisode 2 of the Great British Garden Revival focused on daffodils, blossom trees and shrubs. The history of daffodils dates back before the First World War, where fields were coated in a blaze of yellow. They were then cut and packed for the consumer market. The big affect on daffodil growing came after the Second World War when fields were taken over for the production of food. However, now we often see daffodils in front gardens and scattered along countryside lanes where they bring a smile to our faces as they are seen to resemble one of the first signs of Spring and the growing season ahead. I love the all time favourite Narcissus ‘Tete-a-tete’. This delightfully small variety is the perfect variety for cutting. Undemanding an easy to grow, they will make a beautiful addition to cottage gardens. What is your favourite daffodil?

 

On tonight’s episode James Wong attempts to revive a plant that has disappeared from our gardens, the rhododendron. Christine Walkden puts the case forward for the carnation, as she heads to a specialist nursery to recover some important facts.

Have you been watching? We would love to get your thoughts. Tell us if you prefer traditional or modern varieties and why.

Terri Overett
Terri works in the e-commerce marketing department assisting the busy web team. Terri manages our blog and social media pages here at Thompson & Morgan and is dedicated to providing useful advice to our gardeners. Terri is new to gardening and keen to develop her horticultural knowledge.

Top 5 daffodils ready for planting now

Daffodils growing in masses are a delightful sight and, with colours ranging from white, yellow and pink, there’s a daffodil for every garden. Plant them in pots or grow them in bold drifts naturalised in grass for maximum effect. Watch our video on how to grow bulbs for the best results. You can plant daffodils right through to the end of November. But, to get that stunning display for not much work you need to be planting your daffs , or narcissus as they’re also known as, now. Here are our top 5 daffodils for planting now.

DaffodilsNarcissus ‘Replete’

Few flowers can rival the sumptuous double flowers of Narcissus ‘Replete’ for its delightful colour and form. Lavish ruffles of peachy-pink petals form the eye-catching flowers up to 10cm (4”) across. Undemanding and easy to grow, they are ideal for borders, rockeries and containers; or grow them in bold drifts naturalised in grass. Aftercare – After flowering, allow the foliage to die back naturally before removing it in June or July.

 

DaffodilsNarcissus ‘Rose of May’

This hardy bulb is a distinctively different variety produces fully double whorls of ivory white petals that resemble gardenias, and exude a most delicious fragrance. For a dramatic spring spectacle, grow Daffodil ‘Rose of May’ in bold drifts naturalised in grass.

 

 

DaffodilsNarcissus ‘Happy Faces’

Perfect for a cheerful display in your garden to announce the start of spring! Grown in your borders, or even in big patio pots, the two varieties in this mix will complement each other with varying heights, creating a stunning full display.

 

 

DaffodilsNarcissus ‘Green Eyed Lady’

Daffodils are amongst the most cost effective, pest-free perennial plants available and make wonderful companions for other spring bulbs,perennials, annuals and flowering shrubs. The big, bright blooms are for many gardeners the first visible signs of spring.

 

 

DaffodilsNarcissus ‘Raffles’

This unique daffodil is just like a golden carnation! Billowing blooms, filled with curled petals, and a punchy sweet fragrance.

 
Watch our video on how to grow bulbs for the best results.

Terri Overett
Terri works in the e-commerce marketing department assisting the busy web team. Terri manages our blog and social media pages here at Thompson & Morgan and is dedicated to providing useful advice to our gardeners. Terri is new to gardening and keen to develop her horticultural knowledge.

Spring is on its way

After all the horrendous rain, gales and floods I think I can at last say I believe spring is on its way. The heavy rains have stopped here in Bournemouth although we are still getting heavy showers, but in between we have had sunshine with reasonable temperatures. We have to repair a couple of panels that were damaged in one of the gales, but taking everything into account I consider myself very lucky that no other damage was done.

Spring is on its way

Cheery daffs

The daffodils are out in my garden, making it look very cheery, also many crocuses on the side of roads which makes a great difference to floods everywhere. I noticed today that several trees have their pink blossoms already – another sign that spring is here. My small acer trees, which are in containers, all have new shoots on them. I noticed also that some of my tree lilies are showing themselves – a little early.

Spring is on its way

New shoots on the acer

At last I have been able to get into the garden and cut back and feed my fuchsias and generally tidy up by sorting out the containers ready for the new season. Whilst doing that and getting some ready to be emptied I came across a window box, which at first looked as though it was full of weeds, only to discover that my strawberry plants from last year were just starting to shoot, so I tidied them up ready for the new season.

Spring is on its way

Early tree lily

On Sunday 23rd February part of the film that was made in my garden on 3rd September last year was on TV, I was watching whilst having my breakfast and there I was onscreen – I must say that it felt kind of funny watching myself!!!

Spring is on its way

The front garden in 2013

On 14th January I was presented with a cup for winning Gold First Best Container Garden 2013 in the Bournemouth in Bloom competition, and certificate for Gold Third Best Private Hanging Basket, I was thrilled as we are not told until called up to the stage.

Spring is on its way

Me being presented with the cup for Gold First Best Container Garden 2013

Looking forward to another busy season…

Jean Willis
I started gardening 65 years ago on my Dad’s allotment and now live in Bournemouth, where spend a lot of time gardening since retiring. In 2012 I won the Gold Award for Bournemouth in Bloom Container Garden. I am a member of Thompson & Morgan’s customer trial panel.

Daffodils – plant them now for the best blooms

Plant daffodils now for the best spring displays

Daffodils - plant them now for the best blooms

Narcissus ‘Rainbow Butterflies Mixed’

A colleague heard Alan Titchmarsh talking about planting daffodils in August on his radio show at the weekend and was a bit surprised. After all, August is hardly the usual time to be thinking about planting spring bulbs, is it?

Generally speaking, you can plant daffodil bulbs up until the end of November, but in fact the earlier you plant them, the better they’ll flower. According to Alan Titchmarsh, daffodils that are in the ground now will already be putting down roots, ready for the new season’s growth.

Growing daffodils (or narcissus, as they’re also known) is very easy – they really don’t need much attention once you’ve planted them and you’ll get a stunning display for very little work. They’ll grow in most soils, in sun or part shade and are perfect in borders, containers or naturalised in grass. They’re most impressive if you plant them in groups.

Daffodils - plant them now for the best blooms

Narcissus ‘Replete’ – the pink daffodil

As for colours, there’s such a wide choice – all shades of yellow, white, pink and even rainbow coloured daffs. Some grow to 45cm, while other miniature daffodils barely reach 15cm.

We’ve introduced a number of new daffodils into our range this year, all of which are available to buy online now. These are our top recommendations:

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Daffodils - plant them now for the best blooms

Narcissus ‘Sweet Aroma’

Narcissus ‘Sweet Aroma’
As their name suggests, these daffodils have a delightful fragrance and bloom for up to ten weeks. We thinks it’s one of the best fragrant mixes ever!

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Daffodils - plant them now for the best blooms

Narcissus ‘White Diamonds’ Mix

Narcissus ‘White Diamonds’ Mix
Pure white daffodils in every shape and size. Delicately fragranced, they’ll add a sophisticated touch to your borders and containers.

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Daffodils - plant them now for the best blooms

Narcissus ‘Tête à tête’

Narcissus ‘Tête à tête’
Probably the world’s most popular mini daffodil. Dozens of blooms grow on delicate stems, giving perennial beds and borders a much-needed splash of colour in spring.

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Daffodils - plant them now for the best blooms

Narcissus ‘Jonquilla’ Collection

Narcissus ‘Jonquilla’ Collection
A sweetly scented mix of five different varieties in a lovely mix of colours – ‘Martinette’, ‘Pipit’, ‘Pueblo’, ‘Sundisc’ and ‘Suzy’.

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Daffodils - plant them now for the best blooms

Narcissus ‘Rose of May’

Narcissus ‘Rose of May’
Compact and late-blooming, this daffodil has a truly delicious fragrance and flowers that resemble gardenias.

Rebecca Tute
Rebecca works in the Marketing department as part of the busy web team, focusing on updating the UK news and blog pages and Thompson & Morgan’s international website. Rebecca enjoys gardening and learning about flowers and growing vegetables with her young daughter.

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