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Topical Tips February 2019


As winter draws to a close, things are beginning to awaken in the garden - snowdrops  are in flower, other bulbs are beginning to pop up throughout the garden, there are many shrubs that are in flower at the moment, one of them being Sarcococca with its heady scent filling the air. February is a variable month with a warming sun one day and a winter chill the next. There are however a few more jobs in the garden compared to last month so read on…

Flowers & Shrubs

Top Tip:  Hellebore will be looking amazing at the moment, make sure they are seen at their best by removing any diseased foliage and any leaves hiding the flowers.



Top Tip: Most plants seem to be growing very slowly at this time of year but if you venture out you will see that already the weeds have started to grow, slice them off at ground level with a swoe or hoe to save work later in the year. Check out the range of Wolf Garten tools from our sister company, World of Wolf - https://www.worldofwolf.co.uk/search/hoe

Top Tip:  Prune Wisteria now, cutting back the side shoots to 2 or 3 buds. Click below for an easy to follow video.

https://www.rhs.org.uk/videos/advice/pruning-wisteria



Top Tip:  Split crowded clumps of snowdrops once they have finished flowering to increase their numbers.


Top Tip:  There are a few plants that need pruning now, firstly those that have finished flowering such as Jasminum nudiflorum, Viburnum bdnanatense and Mahonia, also cut back plants that are grown for their attractive stems such as cornus and salix. 



Top Tip:  Although the remains of ornamental grasses maybe looking good it’s time to cut them back to the ground being careful of any new growth appearing to encourage new and strong growth.

Top Tip:  Trim winter flowering heathers as they finish flowering, this will keep them nice and stocky and not too leggy.

Top Tip:  Hardy Fuchsias live up to their name and are hardy! cut them back now to 2 or 3 buds above soil level.

Top Tip:  This is a job every month: dead head your bedding to encourage further flowering.

Top tip:  Visit Fiona who is in charge of our fantastic, award winning bulb room, there are over 230 varieties available . Choose your bulbs now  and plant soon for a fantastic display this summer. Fiona is always available (she does occasionally have a day off though!) to give bulb advice, do come and have a chat with her.

Top Tip:  If your pots are looking a bit dull liven them up with some bedding, we have violas, pansies, cyclamen and small bulbs looking fab!

Top Tip: 
All proper gardeners are never happy with the position of their plants and are always moving them, if you fit into this category then do it now for it is the ideal time to move plants whilst they are dormant just as long as they are not too large.

Top Tip: 
We have a massive selection of seeds available to peruse from Thompson & Morgan (they’ve got a royal warrant you know) and Franchi, the world’s oldest family run seed company (they’re Italian you know).

Grow Your Own

Top Tip:   If you haven’t pruned your apple and pear trees yet, you should have so do it now! Pruning encourages new growth and fruiting spurs on which the new fruit is borne. For further advice come and talk to our experts in the plant department.



Top Tip:  Sow broad beans and peas directly in the ground from mid to late February, they’ll be ready to harvest in early summer.

Top Tip:  Plant garlic cloves 15cm apart, 2cm deep in well drained soil, if it is still cold or very wet delay planting until better conditions prevail.

Top Tip:
 Plant Rhubarb now and force any you may have already for an early crop using a rhubarb forcer, we have them in stock from £19.99



Top Tip:  Prepare vegetable seed beds by removing all weeds and forking in plenty of farmyard manure (£5.99 each 3 for £12)

Top Tip:
 Protect the flowers of peaches and nectarines with clear polythene to prevent peach leaf curl and cold damage.

Top Tip:  Chit your potatoes, click on the link below for info on how to grow delicious potatoes:

https://www.lovethegarden.com/advice/gardening/grow-your-own/how-grow-potatoes

Top Tip:  We said that you should prune your top fruit (apples and pears) now, and indeed you should but hold off with the pruning of plums, cherries and apricots.

Top Tip:
  Carry on planting raspberry canes for this summer, remember how nice ripe raspberries are straight from the bush!

Top Tip:
  Whilst it’s always good to get ahead don’t plant your seeds too early in the green house as they become weak and leggy with the low light levels.

Top Tip:   if you’re thinking of growing potatoes this year but don’t have a lot of room try a potato growing bag they take up no more floor space than three large bags of crisps.

QI:  We sell a variety of potato called ‘International Kidney,’ not a great name but a great potato because if you were to grow it in soil from Jersey you could call your potatoes Jersey Royals, it’s the same variety which I’m sure tastes just as good when grown in north London’s finest soil!