All aboard the good ship Love your Garden!
The plants and inspiration used in this week's show
Can you believe it? We do an episode themed round a cruise ship and the sun shone relentlessly! What a welcome change from the snow and rain!
Now I am not usually a massive fan of gardens that are themed, they can seem too novel and date quickly. However, I was eating my words at the end of this episode. I had so much fun building the garden and the end result looked incredible. Alan had tasked me once again to create an area for the grandchildren to play, now I like to think he asks because I have children myself and I know what kind of things they like, but I think it’s really because he knows I’m still a big kid, and the kid inside me on this episode wanted to build a pirate ship!
I would love to be able to take full credit for the pirate ship that was built, but I could never have done it without the help of Scott from the Frosts team, there is nothing that man can’t make out of wood. We had such a laugh building it and once it was finished we both felt pretty smug!
One of my favorite parts of the garden was the beds that Alan planted with grasses. I love grasses at the best of times and this just looked so effective. And of course Frances’ spa!! That foot massaging machine was amazing!
See the lists below of plants we used and have a go at creating your own Love your Garden inspired borders.
Stipa tennussima is a wonderful grass that stays nice and small, yet manages to gel planting plans together. Run your hand through it in the spring and pull out any dead foliage.
Eryingium (Sea Holly) likes a dry and sunny position. It has enormous tap roots that go in search for water. It can self-seed so make sure you remove the seed heads if you don’t want them springing up everywhere.
Limonium latifolium (Sea lavender) once established can be pretty drought tolerant. It has a rosette of neat green leaves and long wiry stems of tiny flowers.
Crambe maritima likes deep free draining soil that is fertile. It has white flowers in the summer and thick lower leaves.
Erigeron karvinskianus is a great plant and flowers for a long time. Plant lots of it!
Trachycarpus is a hardy palm. If you can afford a mature one, it makes a great feature plant.
Heucheras ‘Lime marmalade’/‘Marmalade’/‘Plum pudding’ These look great at the front of a border or on mass as ground cover to create a tapestry looking effect. It also looks fantastic in a container for the most of the year.
Carex oshimensis is a small tufted evergreen grass which will spread slowly.
Panicum virgatum this grass starts off green, and its strappy leaves turn red throughout June. It also has great autumn colour.
iCornus alba ‘Elegantissima’ likes damp soil and looks wonderful planted in groups. It loses its leaves in the winter to reveal incredible red stems. Prune hard in the spring as it’s the new growth that year that will be bright red in the winter.
Stipa calamagrotis has tall arching leaves and lovely long flowers in late summer. Cut down to the ground in the spring.
Miscanthus sinensis ‘Morning light’ likes a well-drained fertile soil. It will create a reasonably sized clump as it matures, so be sure to give it enough room.
Festuca glauca is a compact ornamental grass, another that looks good en masse or in a gravel garden. The foliage colour really compliments flowers which are pink and purple.
Gaura lindheimera this is long flowering with long slender stems of tiny star shaped flowers. It looks good with grasses and will tolerate a really dry position.
Hydrangeas come in a huge array of varieties. We used a white flowering one in this episode. They like a moist, well drained site.
Lazula is a great grass for growing in shade, it has a lovely wild look. Great in a woodland style planting scheme.
Verbena bonariensis is not always hardy in colder parts of the country. It likes lots of sunshine and can be threaded through a border as it has long stiff stems that mingle brilliantly with other plants.
Dianthus are sometimes considered a little dated and twee but they smell incredible. If you don’t want them in the garden squeeze one in a pot by the front door if only for the scent.
Roses are either loved or loathed. I love them, especially shrub and rambling types. If you are going to grow roses always choose a scented one, because well, why wouldn’t you want to? The ones in this show were hybrid teas, so the more traditional type. With thousands of varieties out there, pick what you love and mulch it every spring. Roses are hungry plants.
Agapanthus like to be root bound so containers suit them well, they like lots of sun and free draining soil. They are not reliably hardy in colder climates.
Phlomis russeliana is a vigorous spreading plant, however it is drought tolerant so if you have a sunny yet dry border which are tricky to plant up, this will do just the trick. It also has lovely seed heads in the winter.
Santolina has silvery fragrant foliage and once mature it creates a really nice mounded shape which looks incredibly effective in a gravel garden.
Paulownia tomentosa (Foxglove tree) is a medium to large deciduous tree. With attractive foliage and panicles of flowers that look just like foxgloves, it’s hard not to love it. It enjoys a moist fertile position.
Phormiums are a brilliant focal point plant. They will tolerate a sunny and dry situation once established and once mature will reward you with extremely exotic looking flower spikes. Great in a tropical themed garden.
Deutzia is a summer flowering shrub which likes to be in full sun. Prune immediately after it has flowered if it starts to get too big for where you want it to grow.
Clematis are brilliant for growing up anywhere. Fences, drainpipes, around doors, through other plants and up trees. Try and choose a variety that flowers twice in the same year.
Foeniculum vulgare looks fantastic planted in and amongst verbena bonariensis. The purple and acid yellow flowers will ‘wow’ you. They also look good towards the back of a border or in a gravel garden. The early foliage is very useful against many earlier flowering things too.
Trachelospermum jasminoides is an evergreen climber so brilliant for giving screens of privacy. It has intensely fragrant white pinwheel flowers and nice autumn colour. Grow in a warm sunny position.