Garden news

Fabulous offers on exotic dwarf cannas and tall tree lilies; learn how to grow your own herbs and vegetables; events; and things to do in your garden this week.
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Dwarf cannas
Dwarf varieties of cannas include brightly-coloured Reine Charlotte

Special offer: easy-to-grow dwarf cannas

Create a tropical spectacle on the patio this summer with dwarf cannas. With their bright exotic blooms above tall, elegant stems and dramatic foliage, easy-to-grow cannas are a bright addition to any garden.

Dwarf varieties of cannas are especially suited to containers where they will warm patios and courtyards. Semaphore has golden-yellow flowers combined with purple-bronze leaves while Reine Charlotte (right) has two-tone flowers with vibrant red centres and banana-yellow margins above glossy green leaves.

The collection is completed by Eric Neubert with beautiful dark purple-green leaves beneath fiery orange flowers. Buy a pack of three rhizomes of any of these varieties for £9.95 including p&p or get nine rhizomes (three of each variety) for just £19.90 and save £9.95. Delivery from February 2009, depending on lifting conditions. Prices include UK p&p.

How to order: Call the credit card order hotline: 0870 950 5914 and quote R18476HP, or send postal orders with cheques made payable to Mr Fothergill’s Seeds, to The Standard Cannas for Pots Offer (R18476HP), Rookery Farm, Joys Bank, Holbeach St Johns, Spalding, PE12 8SG. Orders must be received before 28 February 2009.

Matthew Biggs’s Complete Book of Vegetables

Complete Book of Vegetables: book offer

Nothing compares with home-grown vegetables. Whether you’ve got a small window box or a large garden you can grow them. Matthew Biggs’s Complete Book of Vegetables will inspire a novice or experienced gardener to grow a huge variety.

Biggs, a professional gardener for 20 years, shares his passion and expertise in this illustrated A-Z of 90 popular vegetables. This new edition includes 13 newly popular vegetables, as well as 10 new recipes by chef Jean-Christophe Novelli for whom Biggs is developing a kitchen/demonstration garden at the TV chef’s cookery academy at Tea Green, near Luton.

Homes & Property readers can buy a copy of Matthew Biggs's Complete Book of Vegetables, published by Kyle Cathie Ltd, for £23 including free p&p (UK mainland only, usual price £25). Call 01903 828503 and quote MB/ESH, or email: For further details, visit

Exclusive offer: grow the tallest Tree Lilies

Tree Lilies
The tallest tree lilies can grow 8-10 feet
Tree lilies can grow 8-10 feet. Plant these bulbs in borders, against walls and fences, or in large pots. They can produce many offshoots from a single bulb and their sturdy stalks are almost two inches thick, so they don't need supporting and the foliage remains lush all season.

Choose from three bulbs of Manisa (yellow), Nymph (bi-colour) or Sartre (pink) for £8.99 for three, or get theTree Lily Collection of nine bulbs (three of each) at £17.98 - saving £8.99.

Please send orders to: Evening Standard Offers, Dept. MRES47 PO Box 99, Sudbury, Suffolk, CO10 2SN. Please make cheques payable to TMYP Ltd, or call 0844 573 2020 (quote MRES47), or order online at, before 28 February 2009 (plants dispatched from February).

Spring is a good time to plant new bulbs

The Chelsea Gardener

Garden centre the Chelsea Gardener has a new range of tools, seed, bulbs, accessories and gifts. Spring is the time to start thinking about your kitchen garden. Plant seeds in small containers and keep them in the greenhouse or indoors until seedlings are strong enough to stand the outdoors and the soil has warmed up.

Herbs such as thyme and basil, and vegetables including tomatoes and globe artichokes, should be planted in March or April. Spring is a good time to plant new bulbs such as gladioli and dahlias (seeds and bulbs from 99p - £3.99). Defend growing plants with organic pesticides from £3.99 and add nourishment with organic seaweed fertiliser from £5.49.

Gift ideas include India lanterns from £79.95 and sun jars from £20. Call 0207 352 5656 or visit

Mr McGregors garden gift box for kids

Garden gift box for kids

Get children into gardening with Mr McGregors garden gift box.

The package comes with easy-to-grow vegetable seed tape, two rabbit soaps, four seed labels and growing instructions.

A lovely gift idea, each box is £9.95. To order, visit

Spalding Plant & Bulb Company's new seed pads
Grow your own fresh herbs, such as parsley

Grow your own herbs

Try Spalding Plant & Bulb Company's new seed pads for growing herbs including oregano, mint, chives, basil, wild rocket, dill, summer savory or parsley 'Bravour'. The pads go straight into pots.

Covered with soil and watered, the seeds will germinate within days. Each pack of four pads usually costs £1.75 but Homes & Property readers can get them for £1 each (minimum order £5).

Call Spalding Plant & Bulb Company, quoting Evening Standard on 0844 493 5050 by 13 February 2009. For information or catalogue visit

Chelsea Physic Garden
Chelsea Physic Garden

Garden events

Chelsea Physic Garden's 2009
7-8 or 14-15 February 2009, from 10am-4pm

Chelsea Physic Garden's 2009 winter openings are being expanded to four days. Visit London’s secret garden, on 7-8 or 14-15 February from 10am-4pm to see fragrant herbs and bulbs - particularly snowdrops.

The garden’s main opening season begins in April. The garden has 75 snowdrop species, grouped together in tribute to famous snowdrop breeders of the 19th and 20th centuries. Lunches and teas will be served.

Admission: adults £8, concessions: £5. Chelsea Physic Garden, 66 Royal Hospital Road, LondonSW3 4HS. Call 020 7352 5646 ext 30 or visit

Witch Hazel Nursery, Sittingbourne, Kent
8 February 2009, 10am-4pm

Visit the national collection of witch hazel (Hamamelis) at Witch Hazel Nursery, Sittingbourne, Kent ME9 7LU on 8 February 10am-4pm. The £3 entrance charge includes refreshments. Your donation goes to Demelza House, a local children’s hospice. See or call 01795 843098.

What to do this week

* Plant bare root trees, shrubs and roses as long as it is not freezing.
* Begin sowing vegetables under cover from the start of February.
* Lay out paving and paths.

For more by Matthew Appleby, visit

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