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I have two large beautiful phormiums which have suffered terribly with the prolonged cold weather. They are looking very sad with drooping outer leaves and very untidy now. Is it okay to trim off the drooping leaves around the outside, and would it harm the plants?
Ked, I did get a giggle about your hooligan of a yellow labrador pup. I have got bullmastiffs, and you sure see if they run over the borders, by the BIG paw marks left behind!!!!!!!!!! I am in NZ and today it is 28 celseus outside. Too hot to garden actually so I have got a fan going beside me and sitting enjoying reading Gardeners World. Hopefully we are going to get rain on Sunday and Monday, which will be great as the garden is drying out, and it is so tedious, each evening, standing watering with the hose - even with a cold glass of wine in the other hand !! One advantage is though, that you do notice heaps of things in the garden when you are having to water regularly as you are observing your garden each evening. Hope spring bursts forth for you all over in the UK real soon.
My seed potatoes have arrived and are now standing like soldiers in trays in the conservatory(unheated) to chit. Now all I have to do is dig in the green manure plants in readiness for planting them. Yesterday in the Botanic garden where I am a volunteer, the phormiums were very droopy but we only cleared away the weeds under them. They recovered last year after the bad winter and will do so again - as long as the leaves have colour they are photosynthesising so I would not cut them off. The snowdrops have been joined by the most magnificent display of crocuses. A bad winter has meant that the spring flowers will all be flowering together - some tete-a-tete daffodils are already flowering, as well as pulmonaria and aconites and what a season it is for bloom and no blind bulbs.
Hi Ive been making lists of what id like to change in my garden, its a bit of a blank canvas with open views of fields which i dont want to lose, can anyone recommend any garden design/ideas books to help me incorporate my blank canvas into the views???? Longshot this i know, i just dont know where to start .


to michael bubb thanks very much for your reply, i'll have a lovely display now thanks to you.
bunnysgarden - John Brooks is the guru of garden design so look out for his books at the library. Why not copy the shape of your design in miniature to echo the shapes you see in your view?
Great to read your dog/garden comments! Two bull mastives!! Heavens! Labrador paws are half the size. I agree about training him of course but it's hard when he goes out in the dark and I can't see what he's doing. I knew he'd bitten off some of the jasmine I have (had!!) growing up my pergola but, when we went out today (the first sunny day for ages) I found the blighter has bitten off EVERY STEM from about 3 inches from the ground! I have to catch him at it to make it clear it's NOT OK! We'll get there though and hopefully the jasmine will reshoot.
We are quite new to gardening so still have alot to learn, can we uncover the palms and ferns as we protected them with a fleece cover over winter?
Do I cut all grasses back to ground level? I don,t know the names of all of them, but I think I have some Zebra grass, at the moment it is very tall with fluffy seed heads. Others are green and red and still look quite green.
My daughter bought a strawberry plant "red gauntlet" over the weekend. I have a small garden thats gravelled. Does anyone know if its ok to put this sort into a hanging basket.
We know need to have sun. TWEEDY your daughter can now put her strawberries in her basket.
i think on page 16 of this months gardeners world magazine has got advice on grasses ok alga
i have some 4ft high cordylines that the snow completly flattened.any ideas as to what i can do????
i have got the local school cuming to my allotment on the 16th of march i am going to show them how to grow veg and flowers that go together up to now i have got a pollytunel full of veg and flower seedlings for them to take back with them i just hope it gose well thanks joey nothwood kirkby allotments liverpool


To happymarion Thanks very much, i will go looking for him to get some ideas, as its open fields and forest at the end its a blank for pretty much anything i guess.
My photinia Red Robin looks to have been bitten too badly by the cold weather (we aren't used to too much frozen ground here in the south!) The last leaves on the ends of the branches have drooped and there doesn't appear to be any budding appearing - should I remove it now or should I leave it a while longer? It's a shame because it was a lovely large bush. If I have to remove it can anyone suggest something to replace it? I want it all foliage, scent the works :-)
choiysis its a mexican orange blossom scent like fresh lemon foliage turn white yellow green new growth white can grow quite large think u need to put erasouis compost in tho likes it acidic