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06 Dec 2016

Garden Lover's Diary - December 2016

If you’re looking for a great gardener’s gift, try our Gift Vouchers, which can be redeemed against any type of ticket to the Show. With instant ‘print at home’ delivery that’s one more thing ticked off the list.

Festive creations

Every year I settle down to make a Christmas wreath for the front door. They’re usually a nice mix of holly, ivy and mistletoe, but this year I’m trying something different - a Pyracantha, ivy and crab apple version!

Pyranantha is one of my winter favourites (October’s Plant of the Month) and the stunning orange berries make this wreath really stand out. You should give it a go this year too!


There’s no rest for the wicked as this is the season when Show Gardens are being designed and planned. If you’ve ever thought of taking the step into Show Garden design, now’s the time to consider our annual Beautiful Border competition. The celebratory theme is ’50 years of Gardeners’ World’ with an endless supply of inspiration for your design.

In season - parsnips

Parsnips are synonymous with winter warmers, roasts and soups. It’s well worth having a go at growing them from seed as, whilst some can be a little tricky to germinante (get top tips from Monty here), you’ll be rewarded with a fabulous winter crop.

To enjoy flavour to the full, try BBC Good Foods Spicy Roasted Parsnip Soup.

Plant of the month - Cornus sanguinea (Dogwood)

One of the best bits about winter is when you see nature’s deep reds and yellows pushing through the more recessive colours. Dogwood is one of my favourites, with its wonderfully vibrant stems pushing up from the cold ground. For the brightest winter colour, plant Dogwood in full sun and cut a third of stems to ground level in spring.

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