News - Page 82

Move citrus outside

Move citrus outside for summer now the threat of a late frost is receding: they'll be delighted by a summer holiday outside on a sunny patio and will relish the higher light levels and extra rainfall outside.

Citrus trees are straightforward to care for and rewarding to grow, with sweetly-scented blossom in late autumn into winter which then takes a year to ripen into fruit - so the same tree can be flowering and fruiting at the same time.

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Tackle aphids in the greenhouse

Tackle aphids in the greenhouse before they get to plague proportions and do some serious damage to your plants.

Once upon a time, a gardener could reasonably rely on the weather to kill off any aphids lurking in the greenhouse during winter. Not any more though. Rising temperatures mean they're emerging in spring unscathed, and with reinforcements – so you'll need to be on your guard from the word go.

Whatever you grow in your greenhouse...

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Harness nature with biological controls

Harness nature with biological controls, the environmentally-friendly way to tackle pests which uses the natural enemies of your pests to keep their populations under control.

Biological controls are usually tiny nematodes, parasitic wasps or mites, harmless to people and plants but fatal to many of our most-hated garden pests such as slugs, snails and vine weevils. Just choose the one you want from the shelf in our garden centre here i...

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Get out your posh frock - it's the Chelsea Flower Show!

Get out your posh frock - it's the Chelsea Flower Show! If you aren't one of the lucky few who bagged a ticket before they sold out, clear every evening this week to bask in the world's greatest celebration of horticulture and gardening, where new ideas about design, plants and how to grow them will fill you with inspiration.

Highlights to look out for this year include a slick contemporary design from rarely-seen wűnderkind Italian des...

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Watch out for drought

Watch out for drought as it can be a real killer at this time of year. After coming out the other side of a long, wet winter, it's easy to sit back on your laurels when dry weather comes but in fact, especially now with lots of young seedlings with shallow root systems in the ground, you can't drop your guard.

It doesn't take much early summer sunshine to dry unprotected soil and shrivel anything within the top few centimetres to a cris...

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Sow French beans outside

Sow French beans outside direct into the soil now it's starting to warm up - they'll get away to a great start and you can look forward to one of the treats of the summer in a couple of months' time.

You'll find a great selection of French bean seeds at our garden centre here in Pontypool. Climbing French beans are the most productive, though they do need a wigwam of sturdy canes to support them. Good varieties include 'Cobra', the flat...

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What to do in the garden in May:

In the midst of an exuberance of flowers, trees bowed down under the weight of blossom and perennials shooting up so fast you can almost watch them grow, it's a good time to be outside, come in to our centre in Pontypool and we will be happy to help. Here's what you can be getting on with:

General tasks:
Hoe regularly to keep down weeds while they're still small, using a short-handled onion hoe to weed near plants.

In...

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May's plant of the month is the pelargonium

May's plant of the month is the pelargonium, the nation's favourite bedding plant. These sturdy, brilliantly-coloured stalwarts of hanging baskets everywhere soldier on right through summer: they're very drought tolerant and need only dead-heading regularly to keep the display coming till the first frosts.

You'll find all the ingredients for a really striking display at our garden centre here in Pontypool. Richly-coloured burgundy geran...

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Give your herbs a haircut

Give your herbs a haircut to keep them producing lots of fragrant fresh pickings for the kitchen and to keep them nice and neat.

You'll find many varieties of evergreen herbs like bay, lavender and rosemary on sale now in our garden centre here in Pontypool and they make fantastic value for the herb garden, lasting year after year. One really stylish way to use them is to clip them into low hedges and topiary: in time these will give your herb garden st...

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Get supports in place

Get supports in place for climbing beans and peas before they get too big, and for taller perennials like delphiniums and shasta daisies while they're still clumps of greenery. You'll find lots of different plant options in our garden centre in Pontypool. Wigwams of hazel or willow are great for peas, including sweetpeas, but for big, hefty runner bean plants you'll need something more substantial, like a traditional bean frame.

Sink poles of sturdy bam...

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