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The Gardening Coach

Catharine Howard is the Gardening Coach. Contact her for gardening advice and visit www.thegardeningcoach.co.uk for more information.
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August 3, 2016 | Planting combination for August: Tall, gauzy and with presence

By suspending all blogging activities for over a year, I have made some time to coax our garden into looking  more like a garden.  It has metamorphosed from a bramble nest, through deconstruction to the builder rubble era and now has plants.

One of most useful things that I learnt when I studied landscape architecture was [...]

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December 6, 2013 | This list makes me drool with anticipation

For pure poetry just read this about Dichelostemma Ida-Maia:

“Spectacular red, yellow and green coloured flowers, shaped like cigars, opening at the tip of a wiry stem.  Named after the daughter of a Californian stage coach-driver and pollinated in the wild by humming-birds”.

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January 26, 2012 | Plants by post

Plants by post seems like a fairly crazy idea.  Especially when 18 large grasses were ordered up  in 2 litre pots.  On delivery  the box got heaved, upended into the shed outside and neglected for 10 days.   No-one had remembered to mention the package in the shed and I stumbled across the box, returning [...]

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October 17, 2011 | If you don't get to know a plant properly, it will trip you up.

I know this as I have just fallen flat on my face over peonies.  Lovely covetable peonies  with their bally flowers, huge and fluffy and oh-so Sarah Bernhardt gorgeous.  But with  a string in their tail:   bad late season leaves that cannot be cut down until the frosts are about to arrive.  And the [...]

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May 25, 2010 | Plantaholic Post

Pennisetum massaicum Red Buttons looking seriously good on the Knoll stand at Chelsea Flower Show.  Likes a sunny well drained site and would look great with persicarias and or echinaceas.

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May 25, 2010 | Don't miss these gardens at Chelsea Flower Show

garden by Decembrini and Zanzi at Chelsea

garden by Decembrini and Zanzi at Chelsea

“Lights and Colours of the Alps” grabbed attention in the courtyard section at Chelsea.   Signor Zanzi stepped out from behind his backdrop of mirrors, which set off heaps of smouldering moss to perfection.  The palette was seriously botanic – lifted in inspiration from the Dolomites and plants [...]

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