The Potting Bench Diaries – 5th April 2023

This week has been a little bit wet, to say the least – not necessarily the start to spring that we’ve all been wanting! That said, there have been plenty of opportunities to dash out between the showers to get a glimpse of things stirring and poking and growing! I dont know about you but it already feels like this year is going to be a good one…

One plant I’ll forever worry about through winter is Saliva ‘Amistad’. Its not the hardiest of plants by any means and its always rather a gamble as to whether it’ll live to see another day. That said, it appears that one of ours has indeed made it through the war of winter and continues to fight on.

New growth is emerging from the base and I’m hopeful that it’ll continue to do well. I think we sometimes really undervalue salvias as the real workhorse plants that they are and they don’t get enough press, in my eyes. I’ve mentioned them on here fairly often and this surely wont be the last time.

Our tulips are finally, finally coming out and starting to open – they might have even opened while you’re reading this.

We’ve got an abundance of them again this year, all throughout the garden and it all colours, shapes and styles. I’m never keen on limiting yourself to only one type so this year’s offering could come out as a bit mish-mash but life is too short to not experiment a little in the garden. I’ll be sure to share lots more photos of them over on my Instagram stories so do keep a look out for those.

Our Crown Imperials have also come through fully now and one out of the several we have, is open. This is the first time we’ve had them in our garden and it certainly wont be the last – I can tell you that much.

Excellent early colour, and really quite exotic looking too – which isn’t exactly in keeping with the theme of our garden but as I said before, life is too short to be boring in the garden. Next year, I think I’ll go a bit bolder with these and add some at the back of the borders for some height behind the tulips. What do you think about these? A fan or not for you?

Now that the weather is a touch warmer and indeed wetter, it means there has been an influx of snails in our garden and probably in yours too!

I largely leave them to it here, but I am rather possessive of the Dahlias and other snail loving young plants. Although its not something that every wants to use, I do use Nematodes on our soil – but only where the dahlias will go, the snails are otherwise free to roam where they please. I think we sometimes forget their integral role in the garden and their part in the food chain…

And finally, another podcast episode is now live and this week I’m talking with houseplant expert and author, Tony Le-Britton.

Chances are that you’ll recognise Tony from either his Instagram account (@notanotherjungle) or from his appearance on BBC’s Gardener’s World – either way, this is a great episode full of insight about growing an indoor jungle of your own!

You can listen to the episode here now!

I can’t profess to be as good with houseplants as I am with my outdoor jungle but Tony’s book will be a huge help! Hope you’re able to get outside this week and see what’s happening in your space,

See you again next week,

Disclaimer: Burgon & Ball National Trust Secateurs were kindly sent to me from Burgon & Ball. There was no payment received and no obligation to post about them, however – I have now used them and enjoyed them so I am sharing with honesty and clarity.

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