Planting a garden for cats (or cat-friendly planting in the garden)

I always intended to make our garden as edible as possible. So much so, in fact, that everything in it apart from one “Golden Showers” RHS climbing rose is in itself, or produces, something edible. Edible for humans, that is. Our cats love the raspberry canes and like to rub up against them and sleep […]

Read More

Weed-proofing raised planters organically

Inconsiderate neighbours are irritating at the best of times. We have a couple of particularly bad ones. One of them rents his house out and has let the garden become so overgrown with ivy that the weeds actually reach underneath the foundations of our house! So when I wanted to put some small raised beds […]

Read More

Planting out supermarket herbs

When we put a new kitchen into our last flat, one of the things I wanted to do was to make up for the lack of a garden. So I went to IKEA, bought about ten FINTORP racks and pots and had the workmen affix them to our tile splashbacks so that I could have […]

Read More

Tying in raspberry canes (whether they like it or not)

Before the canes My whole garden seems bent on telling me that I’ve started everything too late this year. The learning curve here is nothing if not steep. My six main raspberry canes in my raised beds have burst into life over the last month and so I thought it was probably about time that […]

Read More

Culling greenhouse plants

As it was – stuffed with plants and seedlings As I’ve mentioned before, I do think that I was a bit naive in my seed sowing. I’ve ended up with an abundance of plants, certainly far too many for my poor little city garden and mini greenhouse to handle. So once again I’ve had to […]

Read More

Wedding favours: Herbs as a wedding present

The herbs awaiting transport We recently attended a wedding with a difference, thrown by some very artistic friends. The event was to be held in the beautiful English countryside. An intimate affair with fairy lights in the trees and a vegetarian bent. The invitation read “no gifts” but the couple wanted their friends to get […]

Read More

What is the point of a side return?

A typical feature of the terraced Victorian houses in London is the side return. This is the name generally given to the narrow strip of garden running along the side of the building from the kitchen to the main part of the garden. It’s generally narrow and, between you and I, more than a bit […]

Read More

Potting on: Lessons learnt from seedling transfers

I think that I made a couple of mistakes this year in my naivete and general gung-ho enthusiasm to get the garden up and running as fast as possible. 1. I planted far too many seeds. I ordered goodness knows how many packets of seeds and therefore ended up with so many seedlings that there’s […]

Read More

Building a mini greenhouse

Greenhouse being built (two days of my life!) With so little space in the garden, I thought that I’d have to forgo a greenhouse, which would mean a sad lack of tomatoes. Blight is so common that I didn’t want to risk growing tomatoes outside. Most of the small greenhouses I was looking at weren’t […]

Read More

When you can’t grow out, grow up! Or, vertical gardening.

When you’re as limited in space as I am, sometimes up is the only way to grow. Vertical gardening, vertical planters or “green walls” have all become very popular over the last five or six years, as urban dwellers seek to grow food regardless of the size of their plot. From planters made of old […]

Read More