Here are our most recent Lichfield Mercury columns.

We write these weekly to help guide and inspire our local customers!

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26th October, 2017

During the coming winter months the ‘bare bones’, the structures of your garden, whether they be shrubs and trees, paths and patios or walls and fences, provide architectural and textural interest so now might be a good opportunity to add height with arches, arbours or a simple obelisk. There are so many climbers you can use on them – it does not have to be the traditional roses and clematis, or perennials such as honeysuckle and tropaeolum (nasturtium). Try annuals of both worlds, why not grow climbing beans which come with either red or white flowers and you will have vegetables as well! Before planting make sure any structure is securely fixed to the ground and is strong enough to support your choice of plants.



Continue to earth up Brussels sprouts, cabbages and other brassicas to given them support as they become increasingly top-heavy.

Carefully draw earth up around leeks to keep the stems blanched.

Cover ground you have cleared with polythene to protect from rain and suppress weeds – this will enable you to start working the ground earlier next season.



One of the most versatile and useful plants for the gardener is the heuchera.  This tough, evergreen perennial comes in a huge range of colours from nearly black through the reds and oranges to a bright lime green. In the border they will give colour during the winter months, thriving in either semi-shade or full sun and any type of soil. Plant them in containers to complement bulbs – small yellow daffodils such as “Rip Van Winkle” look really good with the dark leaved varieties. Heuchera are not attacked by slugs and snails but vine weevil larvae feed on the roots, especially those in containers. Nematodes are the most efficient means of controlling vine weevil if you really want to keep a plant but with so many available its cheaper to replace any lost



§  Hammerwich Gardening Guild: November 7th Presentation Evening

§  Shenstone Gardening Guild: November 13th 7.30pm in the Cooper Room. Sylvia and Alan Williams – Living with Nature

§  Lichfield RSPB: November 14th 7.30pm at the Guildhall. Birds around the UK presented by Phill Ward

§  Cannockwood and Gentleshaw Gardening Club: November 14th 7.30pm in Village Hall. British Wild Flowers with Gwen Johnson. Competition-Poem (own composition) “The Highs and Lows of a Gardener”