The Potting Bench Diaries

The Potting Bench Diaries – 1st June 2022

What I’m Doing This Week: I’m really missing the colours of early spring, but it’s exciting to think about what’s to come soon and over the summer. We continue to fill the gaps in the borders with some planned planting and some other bits coming in to replace things that have either died off or not worked. For example, the alliums should have had some helaniums in front of them, but they don’t seem to have come back for some reason – it just goes to show that not everything will always go to plan!

As things have changed in the rockery a fair bit since last year, the aforementioned alliums are all largely sitting together in a space next to it and my word are they tall! The tallest of the bunch are Summer Drummer, currently at about 7ft tall…they aren’t open yet but it looks as though our neighbours are going to be able to enjoy them as much as we are!

I just love alliums, almost as much as tulips, as they add colour, structure and some real height to any garden space – and they’re so easy to grow! Bung them in and wait, that’s the best way to garden right? Summer Drummer and Purple Sensation are two of the most popular varieties you can get and when you’ve seen them, you’ll know why. Huge heads of purple spikes tower loftily above straight stems, right up into the sky – what could be better!

What I’m Sowing/Planting This Week: I’ve ordered a few more plug plants from eBay to fill a few gaps in the front garden wall, so those will be going in when they come. There hasn’t actually been much planting this week either, which is strange, but there has been one big plant out that has been anticipated for the last few weeks…the dahlias! Never in a million years did I think I’d be here planting out dahlias after last year’s fiasco but there we are and I’m really excited to see them grow and bloom. Is this a dahlia turning point for our garden? That remains to be seen!


As I’ve said before, the four we’ve got this year are Cafe Au Lait, Caribbean Fantasy, Catching Fire and the one I’m looking forward to most, Bishop Of York. The first three have been planted out in the border, in front of the sunflowers and the Bishop Of York has gone in a container.

We’re taking no chances this year with slugs and have protected them as though they were the crown jewels! Nematodes, Slug Rings, beer traps and a new natural slug and snail barrier from Plant Grow should all stop those slippery friends munching away merrily. I’m doing a mini experiment with the one in a pot to see if that’s a more effective way of growing in a slug-free environment to see if we do them all in pots next year….that’s right, I might grow them again next year!

Have you been doing #NoMowMay? We have and you should see the amount of buttercups in our lawn just from not mowing for a few weeks. Aside from looking lovely, they’ve been covered in bees pretty much non-stop. I’ll give the lawn a mow next weekend I think but it’s made me think twice about mowing less than I do at the moment. It’s all food for thought!

In other news…? Episode 10 and possibly the last episode of this season of the podcast is now live…


This episode features rose expert, rose garden designer, and author Michael Marriott. We talk all about Michael’s extensive rose knowledge, how much easier it is to grow roses than some people may think and about Michael’s brand new book…’Roses‘ from RHS Books.

That’s it from me, have a great week and I’ll be back next week with more.

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