Six on Saturday: They can’t cancel the Spring

Wise words from the great David Hockney this week. The Bradford-born artist, who is currently self-isolating at his home in Normandy, unveiled a new picture of daffodils to cheer spirits with the message ‘Do remember they can’t cancel the Spring.’ I am sure many of us SOSers are taking comfort in the new growth in…

Keep on gardening

One of my resolutions for these strange times is to get my children out in the garden as much as possible. Today it is cold and grey, although better weather is forecast from tomorrow. But we still managed to celebrate the Spring equinox by sowing some seeds. Together with my nine-year-old and nearly six-year-old we…

Six on Saturday: Sanctuary

I don’t know about others, but my garden feels like a sanctuary at the moment. A place I can momentarily forget the madness and focus on the minutiae of growing things, pushing their way up through the earth to celebrate Spring. Sadly this week it also became the final resting place for our much loved…

Six on Saturday: Stormy times

First there was my namesake Storm Ciara and now we are expecting Storm Dennis. Our five-year-old is quite excited and keeps on asking when he’s going to arrive as if he’s an old friend coming to visit. But all these storms are taking their toll on trees. To add to their arboreal woes this week…

Six on Saturday: Hellebores and more

I have to confess it’s not the most inspiring time of year in the garden. Outside it’s cold and grey and the plants are looking well, sorry for themselves. But my mum and I had a little moment of joy this afternoon popping into the Snowdrop Day at Marchants Hardy Plants in Laughton, East Sussex….

Six on Saturday: Garden survey

This week I started a three month Garden Design Diploma at the English Gardening School based at the Chelsea Physic Garden, an oasis of calm in the city. The course involves surveying and designing for a project garden and one of the first things we have to do is take plenty of pictures as a…

Sowing seeds

There is a lot of talk of change in January and even more so this year as we enter a new decade. I am trying to kickstart a new way of eating by trying out Veganuary and intermittent fasting. Six days in, I already feel as though I am giving my body and my gut…

Time to trim your hellebores

The time to trim your hellebores is as soon as the new growth starts to appear in winter. We have three Helleborus orientalis in our front garden. They are in rather a shady spot and they seem to flower depending on which get the most sunlight. This pink one does best followed by a couple…

Six on Saturday: 2020: A year of gardening sustainably

What is sustainable gardening? Is it choosing locally or ethically sourced materials? Is it avoiding buying any more plastic pots and reusing those you already have? Is it propagating your own plants from seed and choosing diverse varieties, then at the end of the growing season saving seed for the following year? All of these…

Six on Saturday: The Tulip

I have been eyeing up Anna Pavord’s book The Tulip in our local library for some time now. Only the sheer size of the thing prevented me borrowing it. But I found I couldn’t stop thinking about it so this week I brought it home. It is so dense I will probably have to renew…