The Potting Bench Diaries

The Potting Bench Diaries – 5th October 2022

What I’m Doing This Week: I’m not sure how its been by you but this week has been filled with that glorious autumnal perfect gardening weather. Not too hot, not too cold, not too wet…perfect. And that weather is the perfect storm for lifting and dividing plants too. This time of year is great for standing back and taking stock of what the garden has given you over the last few months and starting to make those tweaks here and there.

Something I’m tweaking going into Autumn is the amount of bulbs I’m planting this year! Some, like Tulips (which I love) I’m planting more of…the exact number is to be confirmed! But others, such as daffodils – I’m actually doing less of this year!

Last year I did several lasagne’s by layering bulbs but I was really disappointed with the results so this year its mainly tulips in their own pots, with some daffs in some others – but less! That does mean, however – that I need to be a little more choosey with varieties. I’m mainly trying to go for the really highly scented daffs – which means I’ve got varieties such as Fragrant Cheer (from Taylors Bulbs). Either way I’ll enjoy whatever we grow and I’ll enjoy seeing yours over on Instagram even more.


I’m not sure if you remember, but earlier in the year I bought myself a few random bags of bulbs to try from Poundland. Not having a tremendous amount of hope for them, I planted them and hoped for the best. Well I’ve been really pleasantly surprised and the latest have just opened!

I’ve never grown Peacock Orchids before but I’m so glad I got this bag – they’re a really nice addition to add something new between August and October. These are going to be a firm favourite moving forward and I’ll be sure to be on the lookout for more bargains like this in spring. I’ve got to admit, I totally forgot I’d planted these so when they bloomed it was a real treat.

Speaking of treats – our Jasmine ‘Clotted Cream’ seems to have put on another burst of flowers out of absolutely nowhere! I just love the scent on any jasmine but I’ve heard some people describe it as smelling like cat wee! What do you think?? Love it, or hate it??

In Podcast news: Episode 2 of the new season is now live and I think you’ll really enjoy this chat with a very special head gardener!

Josie Lewis is head gardener extraordinaire at Sarah Raven’s cutting and trials garden, Perch Hill in East Sussex. Aside from being a working garden its also the personal garden to Sarah and her husband Adam so it was fascinating to hear how they balance both of those! You can listen in all the usual places or by searching for ‘Tales From The Potting Bench’.

And that’s it from me for another week – lets hope the weather stays dry for another few weeks to get all those bits and pieces done (and more bulbs planted!)

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