There’s only so much you can say about soil, right?! Wrong! ‘Good Soil‘ is PACKED with delightful surprises, from a little science on soil biology through to guides on how to best use all that chicken manure (a topic close to my heart). And then there are the stunning photos and drawings included. This might be about soil, but it’s about beautiful soil.
One of the things I want to do this year is have a little play for marigolds (Calendula) and experiment with the flower’s medinical use. Not only are calendula fantastic for the garden – especially a vegetable plot where the bring in lots of insects to eat those ‘orrible critters – but, yes, they have healing properties too. These include antiviral and inflammatory properties! So, when I was sent The… Continue reading
It’s THAT time of the year. You know what I mean….you arrive home from work. It’s dark. It’s gloomy. But, ‘oh look’, there’s a huge stack of seed catalogues to snuggle up to. You warn yourself only to look, to order a couple of packets at most, but before you know it there are packets and boxes and envelopes of exciting seeds, bulbs and other goodies arriving at… Continue reading
I know, I know – another week, another book review. But I’ve wanted to discuss both these books for a while and as not a huge amount is happening in the garden, now’s the time to do so. Last week’s The Market Gardener gives you the bones for veggie success. This week, Pigs in Clover offers a hilarious and sometimes bleak look at life as a smallholder.
I’ve ‘… Continue reading
Finally, a veggie growing book that has some real punch. Jam packed with real data and incredibly useful charts, The Market Gardner is a book that you really shouldn’t miss, especially if you want to monetize your home-grown harvests.
I love a good gardening book, and can happily sit and indulge in pretty pictures and descriptive horticultural passages whilst sipping a steaming mug of tea. However, you’ll rarely… Continue reading
When it comes to gardening books, I have huge stacks of how-to, design, allotmenting books, in addition to several large garden encyclopedia’s. So when I came across the First Ladies of Gardening, it was nice to sit back and enjoy a little gardening history instead of being reminded of the many jobs I haven’t gotten around to yet (though, you’ll certainly be inspired by these pioneers… Continue reading
As plants recede ready for winter and the garden outside begins to fade, one thing that becomes all too apparent is hard-landscaping, or the lack thereof. Plant hoarding is in my nature, so I’m quick to grab new flowers and foliage at a regular rate. Thinking about the ongoing permanent structure of the garden, however, is something I have to constantly remind myself about. I think, partly, it’s because of… Continue reading
When you walk the aisles at the Chelsea Flower Show, or stroll around the sprawling and manicured estates of National Trust homes, it’s hard to imagine how such magnificence could make it into your garden. I know myself that breaking down inspiration into manageable chunks to try at home can be hard. And it’s very rare that any amateur gardener can sit down and say to themselves, ‘Right. I’m… Continue reading
If there’s one thing that almost rivals plants when it comes to retail-distraction, it’s solar lights. I’m a fan of lighting in the garden, albeit subtle illumination. You won’t find any glowing fairies, or light-up hedgehogs or strings of Chinese lanterns in my garden. I like the very calm, very simple, very elegant strings of solar fairy lights. When it comes to path lighting, a few carefully placed pedestal/post lamps… Continue reading
It has to be said, that when you’re gardening with a small budget, spending your hard-earned cash on power tools seems like a no-go area. I’ve always had this staunch idea, and rather stupid – it has to be said – that labouring away and toiling manually on the land would give me more satisfaction. You know what? I doesn’t. It’s just bloody tiring… Continue reading
One thing I’ve been trying to do in the new house is to grow a lot more of our food. With the allotment gone, I have to rely on what I can plant out back – actually, I’m finding it far easier to potter around than head to the allotment and get working. I’m growing a lot more of what we actually eat – onions, tomatoes, spinach, beans…that sort of… Continue reading
It’s RHS Chelsea this week, and anyone who’s visited the stunning event will know that alongside the planting and show gardens, it’s also the chance to drool over the vast array of stunning furniture. I don’t know about you, but when it comes to gardening I’m normally so into the plants, I actually forget about seats, tables and benches. It’s a mistake on my part; after all, isn’t a garden… Continue reading
For the past few years, my hens have been housed in a stationary run; once home to my aviary birds, it became a make-shift coop when I was desperate to start keeping chooks. Knowing I was soon moving and that I wanted to return to the flight back to my finches, I started looking for a decent yet affordable coop. If you’re anything like me, you see an Eglu, breathe… Continue reading
It’s one of my favourite times of year – spring. At this time of year I’m not only excited to see plants emerging from the soil after they’ve had their yearly hibernation, but also to get growing. Sowing is one of nature’s constant miracles; scatter some miniscule seeds into a clod of earth and later, sometimes only days, life appears. It’s just amazing.
However, if you’re like me and are… Continue reading