We are a family run garden centre that is well known nationally as a specialist for bare rooted hedging plants and young trees. The Garden Centre always has a good selection of shrubs and plants which are not commonly found elsewhere, together with a wide range of the more commonly sought after plants. Established for over 50 years, the Garden Centre has recently been redeveloped to a high standard. Our shop contains the largest selection of seeds and bulbs for miles around, together with garden chemicals, tools, garden furniture and many other goods. Outside we stock peat-based and peat-free composts, paving, fencing, timber decking, garden buildings and greenhouses, and a large range of pots, statues and garden ornaments. Our aquatics centre has a good reputation for their excellent quality tropical, marine and cold water fish. The Gardeners' Retreat, our coffee shop/restaurant, serves fresh home cooked food and is an excellent way to round off any visit to the Garden Centre.
• PLANT summer-flowering bulbs and corms as soon as the soil can be worked easily and the fear of the worst frosts have passed. Popular favourites such as Dahlias, Gladioli and Lilies can be established where you want them to flower. However, tender bulbs, such as Calla, Canna and tuberous Begonias are best started off in pots, or in the case of tuberous Begonias, in shallow pots or seed trays on a warm, well-lit windowsill or heated greenhouse/conservatory. A 50:50 mix of Perlite and multi-purpose compost is a good mix to get the roots well established. • PROTECT blooms on early flowering fruit trees – Apricots, Nectarines and Peaches – with horticultural fleece or a similar material. Remember camellias in pots need to be positioned so they receive sunlight from mid-morning onwards, otherwise any vulnerable buds may get frost scorched, go brown and fail to open. All Camellias and potted fruit would benefit from a granular feed this month. Apply a slow-release Osmocote fertiliser around the base of each of the plants to help keep the plants healthy. • VEG SOWINGS You can now start sowing directly into the soil the likes of Broad Beans, Parsnips, Onions and Peas. If you have cloche, cold frame, unheated greenhouse or porch, sow Summer Cabbage (go for varieties such ‘Greyhound’, ‘Hispi’ and ‘Stonehead’), Radish, Lettuce, Rocket, Spinach and early Turnips. You can sow them directly into individual cell-trays so avoiding root disturbance later on. Don’t forget to keep ‘chitting’ your potato tubers. Don’t forget we do have a great range of cell-grown vegetable plugs, including brassicas and salad crops, available from our Seasonal Plant Tunnel. • QUICK FIXES Start feeding fish and using the pond fountain; remove pond heaters. Cut back Cornus (Dogwood) and Salix (Willow) grown for colourful winter stems. Open the greenhouse or conservatory doors and vents on warm days. Protect new spring shoots from slugs. Try positioning some copper tape (pictured) around the base of vulnerable plants. The copper produces a static charge which will deter the slimy pests from crossing the tape and getting to your plants. • GREAT PLANTS to look out for in March: Ajuga, Aubrietia (pictured, middle), Camellia, Cyclamen coum, Euphorbia (‘Red Wing’, pictured left) Helleborus, Hyacinths, Mahonia, Muscari (Grape Hyacinths), Narcissi, Primroses, Polyanthus, Pulmonarias (‘Blue Ensign’, pictured right), Sarcococca, Saxifraga, Tulipa and Viburnums tinus.