Are you ready to transform your outdoors? You don’t have to be a Love Your Garden expert to enjoy a gorgeous garden, especially with a helping hand from Homebase. We’ve got everything you need to own your outdoors, from plants and equipment to top tips from the show’s experts. Let’s get growing...

A Garden Featured on Love Your Garden - Series 10, Episode 1

The team of Love Your Garden experts turn a suburban plot in Hull into an exciting wildlife retreat for an inspiring, nature-loving teenager and his family.

Our ranges to help you improve your garden this Spring

Plants, Seeds & Bulbs
Decking
Paving Slabs
Paving Stones
Garden Gravel
Garden Benches
Garden Table and Chairs

Top tips from the Love Your Garden experts

Want to know more? Loving your garden couldn’t be easier with some amazing top tips from the Love Your Garden experts…

Top Tip 1

Balconies can be tricky, to make the most of a small space I always find multi-purpose furniture is key. A bench that doubles as storage and table that folds down from a wall are both simple and practical.

Also don’t forget to use your vertical space, grow climbers up walls and hang baskets full of plants. Surrounding yourself with greenery will give you the feeling of much larger garden.

 

Top Tip 2

Planting productive plants in the place of ornamental ones give you access to fresh harvests to sensationalise your dishes. Containers potted up with herbs like the crinkly leaves of parsley, silver-leaved sage or flowering thyme can look great—especially in an outdoor kitchen. You can just reach over and pluck off leaves to enhance your culinary dishes.

 

Top Tip 3

Whenever you use a large and dominating feature in the garden, like a water feature, bird bath or even a seating area, really think about the plants you use around it. Choosing things that echo the shapes or balance them but with a natural form, structural shapes and carefully considered colours can really enhance the whole space.

 

Top Tip 4

Creating cover over an entertaining space will really help you to maximise the potential of the area. Retractable awnings or temporary sail shades will give perfect protection from a quick shower of rain or baking hot sun. For a real designer touch add some lighting and you can entertain from day through tonight.

Ask the Love Your Garden experts

Got a burning question you need answered? Help is at hand from the experts from the show, covering everything from plants to pets…

How can you give your borders the best start to the year?

Rid your border of weeds first, so that they don’t seed at the during spring and spread all over the border—my adage is one year’s seeding seven years weeding. Then you want to feed the soil add plenty of some organic matter such as leaf mould, compost, farmyard manure or buy bagged up soil conditioner. Turnover and cultivate the soil, working in the organic matter. Add some fertilizer such as Miracle-Gro® All-purpose Continuous Release plant food.

What’s the best way to protect new Spring shoots from slugs and snails?

The best way of keep slug populations in check is by employing garden bouncers, these are slug-eating gardener’s friends such as frogs, toads, birds and hedgehogs. However, if you’re finding your garden overrun in this wet weather, another reliable method is removal by hand, wearing gloves or by using a clothes peg or chopsticks and bucket. You could also try copper tape around your containers as a slug barrier.

How do you know the compost in your compost bin is ready to use?

You will know your compost is ready when it stops smelling like rotting matter and begins to smell sweet. The colour should be deep-brown, and the texture will be light and crumbly too.

Is there a trick to deadheading plants?

Deadheading is easy, using your finger and thumb or secateurs simply remove the faded bloom by taking it back to the next new set of leaves or bud. Sometimes this means removing the whole stem back to the base of the plant, don’t worry, this is normal, the plant will just send up new stems with more flowers!

How often should you be mowing the lawn in Spring?

Once a week, if you have a mover that can mow at different heights then start with a longer cut and work your way down to a shorter length as the weather warms up.

They say March is the perfect time to prune your plants, but which ones?

If you have any early flowering shrubs like Camellias and Daphne which you would like to reshape then pruning them immediately after flowering is best. Any group 2 Clematis can also be done and it’s a great time to cut back any perennials and grasses that you didn’t cut back in the Autumn.

What’s the best way to protect new Spring shoots from slugs and snails?

Slugs and snails can be the bane of a gardeners’ life especially in the spring when shoots are small, delicate and incredibly tasty to these pests! There are a number of ways of protecting them though. Traditional slug pellets have been proven to have a very detrimental effect on other wildlife like birds, frogs and even cats and dogs who eat the poison as it works it’s way up the food chain. The best approach instead of relying on chemical controls is multi-pronged. That means killing slugs when you find them, even going out with torches at night when these beasties are out and about, and putting out half drunk cans of beer as traps. If you combine this with a physical barrier like broken egg shells, human hair, Cooper or sheep wool, which you can get in pellet form, that breaks down and turn into compost that will feed your plants later in the year.

What plants or crops should we be planting right now?

It may feel like spring is a long way off but if you look closely, you can see the buds of the trees beginning to break and the bulbs pushing their way through the soil and even flowering. Now is the perfect time to buy flowering trees as you can see them in their full glory and pick the one you like best. That’s cherries, crab apples, magnolias, hawthorns and amelanchier. Choosing them when they’re in flower may make them a little more expensive but you’re guaranteed to have a flower to be proud of next spring. It’s also the perfect time to get your crops underway by sowing carrot, chard, beetroot, spring onion and broad bean seeds.

How do you repair frost damage to your plants?

Damage in plants is to be expected in the winter either from frost or in recent years from strong winds, which can have a very similar effect. On herbaceous perennials this kind of die back is to be expected and shouldn’t affect the plants at all next year. Usually the worst affected plants are trees and shrubs, where the tips of a plant will turn brown and die back and you may lose some leaves, particularly on species like bay. Although you can’t actually repair this damage, there are things you can do to get the plants back in good form. Firstly, with clean, sharp secateurs, remove all of the dead growth as any dying or damaged areas will make infections from fungus and bacteria more likely. Then as soon the the risk of frost is over, give plants a feed. Don’t over do it but making sure plants are well looked after over the season should give them the best chance to grow back with renewed vigour. The key is not to worry. Plants are much more resilient than we give them credit for. If you’ve suffered badly with specific species then wrap them in horticultural fleece or cover them with bubble wrap next winter.

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