Mandy Watson

Gardening: Beating the cold and wet soil for a good show of tulips

Got cold, wet soil? No problem! Big showy tulips don’t do well in my garden’s clay soil, so it’s pointless even trying.

Meconopsis Lingholm (Himalayan blue poppy). Picture by: Plant World Seeds

Gardening: Get free seeds with Plant World Seeds’ new catalogue

The Plant World Seeds offers have always been very popular – and here’s a new one to celebrate the company’s new catalogue.

How were your tomatoes this year?

Gardening: How were your tomatoes this year?

It’s November and the last of the tomatoes have been used – so what’s the verdict on this year’s crop and varieties?

Kids' Small Personalised Crate -

Gardening: Christmas gifts to get your children into the garden

Struggling to get gifts for your gardening friends and relatives? Here is a selection of the best products on the market – they’ll not want to stay indoors on Christmas Day!

French marigold Striped Marvel. Picture by Thompson & Morgan

Gardening: Be prepared for 2018 – the Year of the Marigold

Get ready for some vivid garden colour next season – 2018 has been named the Year of the Marigold.

Brothers Stuart and Ian Paton with their winning pumpkin. Picture by Thompson & Morgan

Gardening: Paton brothers smashing records with their pumpkins

Everyone loves monster veg and last weekend four British records were broken, including the biggest pumpkin ever grown in the UK.

Why we should love our disappearing native apple varieties

Gardening: Celebrate the diversity of the autumn apple harvest

Apples are one of the crops we associate with autumn so celebrate the diversity of local varieties on Apple Day, held on October 21.

Carrot Speedo F1. Picture by Mr Fothergill's

Gardening: The top vegetables to select for the 2018 growing season

It’s great when the new catalogues come in and you can sit curled up in a chair, pondering over what you’re going to grow next season.

A bee on lavender flowers.

Gardening: How to encourage bees back into the garden

Not cutting your lawn and planting foxgloves are the two most popular things to do to encourage bees into the garden, according to a survey.

A trial bed of sunflowers, tall and short, at the Royal Horticultural Society's Harlow Carr garden in Harrogate.

Gardening: Why size is not the be all and end all for sunflowers

It’s the time of year when you reap the rewards of growing sunflowers, with the traditional huge yellow heads nodding over the garden.

Allotments and gardening can help people keep fit.

Gardening: Growing the movement – National Allotments Week

It’s National Allotments Week and the theme is Growing the Movement, paying tribute to the voluntary association management committees, plot-holder volunteers and councils managing, creating, developing and safeguarding sites.

The common moth, Tineola bisselliella.

Gardening: The garden plants which can tackle a moth problem

Is your home suffering a moth infestation? If so, you’re not alone – moth numbers have soared this year, thanks to a combination of a mild winter and warm spring.

George with loud bell - we always know where he is.

Gardening: The problems of a pet cat and garden wildlife

Do you, or would you, keep your cat indoors permanently to save garden animals?

The Working Wetlands Garden at Washington Wetland Centre. Picture by Ian Henderson

Gardening: How creating a ‘rain garden’ can help tackle climate change

Gardeners are being encouraged to try ‘rain gardening’ as a way of coping with the effects of climate change at a new WWT Washington Wetland Centre garden exhibit.

Clumping yellow bamboo ... Fargesia robusta Pingwu.

Gardening: Getting the right bamboo plants for your garden

Bamboo is big at the moment – quite literally – don’t fall for the massive varieties that can be an invasive pest.

Orange bouquet lily, geraniums and an Echium brighten up a seating area.

Gardening: Container plants add colour and help stop the spread of weeds

The greatest gardening sin is a bare patch of soil in my opinion – it will only get colonised by weeds – that’s where a collection of container plants comes in handy.

Rose of the Year 2018, Lovestruck. Picture by RHS Media Image Collection

Gardening: The magnificent seven new roses on the market

Everyone loves the first flush of roses, and there is always excitement when new varieties are released at the annual RHS Hampton Court Palace and Chelsea flower shows.

Sunflowers growing amongst vegetables on an alloment. Picture by Mark Bolton/IGPOTY

Gardening: Get snapping to be in with a chance of winning a trip to the Netherlands

Fancy yourself as a garden photographer? Now everyone can enter one of the world’s most prestigious competitions to win a trip to Holland.

Cordon tomatoes planted in simple ring culture pots on top of grow bags.

Gardening: How to get the biggest crops from your grow bags

Grow bags are great news for gardeners with little (or no space) but there are pitfalls – here are my top tips for getting your money’s worth and the biggest crops of tomatoes, peppers ad veg out of soil in sacks.

Calendula ruined by powdery mildew.

Gardening: Got a problem with powdery mildew in your garden?

It seems this year’s number one pest is powdery mildew, caused by our very dry spring – here’s how to identify it and treat outbreaks organically without buying expensive products.

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