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Latest posts by blairs

Tropical garden

Posted: 29/03/2013 at 08:38

The garden in question has now changed owners, the blog for it is


You can have a tropical garden in the North of Scotland but will need to bring most things indoors/greenhouse over winter. Some gardeners got away with leaving plants out to overwinter but that was a few years ago and even in Cornwall gardenres have to bring troipcals in as it is too wet over winter and this spring has been cold.


Also look at

Ricinus Communis (Castor Oil Plant)

Posted: 28/03/2013 at 19:43

You are a little early. I sow in mid April and the extra light and (normally) heat brings them on. Place them on your sunniest windowsill. Sowing too early can mean you have 3ft plants by end May...

Evergreen Bamboo

Posted: 28/03/2013 at 19:11

I will advise Amulree in Norfolk. They do deliveries and are really tall and heathy bambo

Moving Fatsia Japonica

Posted: 28/03/2013 at 16:29

Ziggy - join it is a specialist site for those interested in exotics. Mainly UK based bunch.

I would not cut it at all till frosts have stopped as that can cause rot.

begonia offer

Posted: 26/03/2013 at 20:10
discodave wrote (see)

I got one by email from them for 72 Begonia plants for 75pence (you pay postage and packaging). Its also a T&M offer. 



Would you really pay £5.67 for 72 small Begonia plug plants in a garden centre? (add in the £4.95 PP)

Veg beds at front - how to make them attractive

Posted: 26/03/2013 at 20:06

Most houses after 1870 have covenants preventing veg being grown in front gardens. In Victorian times it was a sign of poverty to have to grow veg in your front garden and not be well off enough to have lawn. For some reaosn even new houses have such restrictions. Who would actually enforce such restrictions is another matter though and I doubt anyone would or could stop you planting veg, but thought it best to warn you.


With clay soil I would use raised beds. As it is the front garden good quality stone or hardwood would look smart.

TIPS ........

Posted: 24/03/2013 at 16:10

Soak seeds in Orange juice or Coke for 24-48 hrs. The acidity helps break down seed coats without scarification.

Not GWM getting advertised discount @ Crocus

Posted: 24/03/2013 at 13:28

Well that is weird. If I use then follow the link I automatically get the 20% discount. But if I just use the code in the magazine I only get 10%. Says nothing in the magazine that to get 20% you need to use the link in

Not GWM getting advertised discount @ Crocus

Posted: 24/03/2013 at 12:21

April's GWM (pg 33) says that we have 20% discount March to May at Crocus. I have used the code 9215 twice now and I was about to spend quite a lot yesterday and specifically wanted to use Crocus as I like the quality and 20% off makes the plants a deal. However the code is only for 10%, so I did not order. So either the code is wrongly published or GWM subsrcibers are not getting the correct advertised discount. Is everyone else getting the same wrong discount?

Van Meuwen

Posted: 20/03/2013 at 15:21
jatnikapyar wrote (see)

Hi Blairs, I do not EXPECT the plants to be large, or match the pictures taken in summer(as you informed us complainers) but surely £12.00p warrants the 7cm square pot to contain a common, easy growing plant, to contain a reasonable SIZE and HEALTHY plant . Not a scraggly one with ONE shoot and half a leaf.  Crocus is expensive but at least their plants match the price and EXCELLENT customer service.

Is that too much to ask?

I agree with healthy and I find a lot of websites never tell you what size to expect - J Parkers, T&M and Van Meuwen rarely if at all do - they tell you the size the plant might become when mature! But at this time of year you are going to get a scraggly shoot in a tiny multi-cell. They are grown in vast greenhouses, shipped to the Channel Islands then posted back to the UK to avoid VAT...naughty naughty but legal. It does mean that you get a lot of plants for your money, you just need to know what you are getting which is my gripe with such companies.

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