Ann Janes »

COPING WITH AN AFRICAN VIOLET

Watford Observer: Photograph of the Author

Posted on 9:19am Tuesday 15th April 2014

Over the years I have noticed that by and large people interested in gardening are generous to a fault in passing on plants and cuttings.

Ann Janes »

TELEVISION - AT LAST A TREAT FOR GARDENERS

Watford Observer: Photograph of the Author

Posted on 11:48am Sunday 6th April 2014

Speaking as a gardener I often feel that horticulture and gardening are a poor relation when it comes to television coverage.

Ann Janes »

OH WHAT A BEAUTIFUL MORNING!

Watford Observer: Photograph of the Author

Posted on 11:20am Saturday 29th March 2014

It was warm, it was sunny and everywhere there was colour.

Ann Janes »

ANEMONES - A SURE SOURCE OF BRILLIANT COLOUR

Watford Observer: Photograph of the Author

Posted on 4:13pm Wednesday 19th March 2014

When we think of anemones we visualise the brightly coloured flowers that we love to see whether in the local florists or on market stalls.

Ann Janes »

CAN SPRING REALLY BE NEARLY HERE?

Watford Observer: Photograph of the Author

Posted on 1:06pm Sunday 9th March 2014

After so many weeks of gloomy days and heavy rain it doesn't seem possible that we experiencing sunshine and blue skies.

Ann Janes »

THE DAFFODILS ARE COMING!

Watford Observer: Photograph of the Author

Posted on 8:31pm Sunday 2nd March 2014

A sure sign that spring is very near is when the daffodils start appearing.

Ann Janes »

MAKING PLANS

Watford Observer: Photograph of the Author

Posted on 11:16am Sunday 23rd February 2014

It's not too late to sit back and mull over the successes and failures of last year.

Ann Janes »

BRILLIANT COLOUR FOR DARK DAYS

Watford Observer: Photograph of the Author

Posted on 11:10am Sunday 16th February 2014

A moment of magic - the primulas are in full bloom

Ann Janes »

BRAVE SNOWDROPS

Watford Observer: Photograph of the Author

Posted on 12:18pm Sunday 9th February 2014

I just love snowdrops.  With their deceptively fragile beauty they are a sure sign that a new year of growth in our gardens is beginning.  Who can help but smile with pleasure when they begin to show their nodding heads of exquisite little white flowers, tinged with the freshest of green. The legend associated with these brave forerunners of spring tells us that after the expulsion from Eden a kindly angel took pity on Eve who was crying desperately in the now barren wilderness.  The angel blew on a snowflake turning it into a snowdrop and hope was born. The bulbs can be planted in the autumn or if you really want to see just what type you are planting a better way is to wait until spring and choose hybrids ‘in the green’.  By doing this when the plants are in full leaf and you can really see what you are getting.  They prefer a fertile and moisture retentive soil that has been enriched with plenty of organic matter.  For a spectacular display plant in drifts under trees and shrubs.  In time divide large clumps while they are in flower, or just after.  Lift carefully and separate each bulb so that the leaves and roots are intact.  Replant straight away at the same depth. I keep an eye on my neighbours’ gardens to see who has the best display of snowdrops and, of course, who had them in flower first.  Last year I underplanted the apple tree that I am growing in a pot and whilst not yet in flower there are plenty of green shoots showing.

Ann Janes »

DESPITE THE RAIN!

Watford Observer: Photograph of the Author

Posted on 11:57am Sunday 2nd February 2014

Having just experienced the wettest January in 100 years it seemed like a miracle to look out of the window this morning and see sunshine and blue skies.

Ann Janes »

THE JOY OF FLOWERS

Watford Observer: Photograph of the Author

Posted on 7:28pm Sunday 26th January 2014

Even in winter check out your own garden.

Ann Janes »

AN ALL ROUND WINNER

Watford Observer: Photograph of the Author

Posted on 9:14am Wednesday 20th March 2013

Their bright yellow flowers can brighten the garden like rays of sunshine.

Ann Janes »

The still controversial subject of whether or not to use peat in our gardens.

Watford Observer: Photograph of the Author

Posted on 9:31am Monday 11th March 2013

This valuable resource has been much loved by gardeners for many, many years.

Ann Janes »

WOULD YOU GIVE A HOME TO A GNOME??

Watford Observer: Photograph of the Author

Posted on 5:44pm Monday 18th February 2013

It seems we either love them or hate them

Ann Janes »

LOOK TO THE FUTURE

Watford Observer: Photograph of the Author

Posted on 11:39am Sunday 10th February 2013

The days are appreciably longer

Ann Janes »

SEEKING AUTUMN BERRIES

Watford Observer: Photograph of the Author

Posted on 12:08pm Monday 29th October 2012

What a shock this weekend has been – snow showers and frost.  Just as we were beginning to think the hardy annuals and perennials would last forever.  With the help of a very good friend I had done a major rearrangement of my small garden a couple of weeks ago.  Plants that had proved to be taller than expected, probably due to all the earlier rain, have now been moved to the back and the smaller plants that were outgrowing their given space have been spread out and a few new ones fitted in. 

Ann Janes »

TIME TO BE PLANNING FOR SPRING

Watford Observer: Photograph of the Author

Posted on 2:47pm Tuesday 2nd October 2012

Bulbs are one of nature's miracles - just think that packed into a single, small unpromising looking bulb is everything needed for a future display of beautiful flowers.

Ann Janes »

AUTUMN IS ALMOST HERE

Watford Observer: Photograph of the Author

Posted on 8:14pm Sunday 23rd September 2012

There are plenty of jobs to put on our 'things to do in the garden' lists.

Ann Janes »

WHEN IT'S GOOD IT'S REALLY GOOD

Watford Observer: Photograph of the Author

Posted on 8:32pm Sunday 9th September 2012

This months falls between summer and autumn and for gardeners is a bridge between the two.

Ann Janes »

ADD A TOUCH OF ELEGANCE

Watford Observer: Photograph of the Author

Posted on 10:14am Thursday 9th August 2012

For a touch of sheer elegance to your flower garden you don’t have to look further than iris.  They really are one of those ‘no garden should be without’ plants.  Not only surprisingly easy to grow and they come in a variety of forms including some that live happily in water, some that prefer a moist boggy area around ponds, whilst others will add their own impact in borders or rockeries.

Ann Janes »

THE BEES NEED YOU

Watford Observer: Photograph of the Author

Posted on 10:01am Thursday 26th July 2012

Currently in Britain we are losing bees faster than any other European country.

Ann Janes »

THE IMPORTANCE OF GREEN

Watford Observer: Photograph of the Author

Posted on 4:47pm Monday 18th June 2012

Green provides a cool and often luxuriant quality and without this the impact of all other colours can be lessened.

Ann Janes »

COLOUR - A PERSONAL CHOICE

Watford Observer: Photograph of the Author

Posted on 1:14pm Monday 11th June 2012

We may be governed by the shape and position our gardens but after that it's down to us.

Ann Janes »

SUMMER BASKETS AND CONTAINERS

Watford Observer: Photograph of the Author

Posted on 9:26am Monday 28th May 2012

Watering, of course, is the magic word and this needs to be done at least once a day or twice in really hot weather.

Ann Janes »

SNAPDRAGONS

Watford Observer: Photograph of the Author

Posted on 4:24pm Wednesday 23rd May 2012

You only have to watch children squeezing the jaws of a snapdragon to watch it open to be transported back to childhood.

Ann Janes »

'OF CABBAGES AND KINGS'

Watford Observer: Photograph of the Author

Posted on 1:38pm Monday 14th May 2012

It really is true that 'greens are good for you' and they don't come much greener than members of the cabbage family.

Ann Janes »

HAVE A GO AT GROWING YOUR OWN MINI VEG

Watford Observer: Photograph of the Author

Posted on 12:22pm Sunday 6th May 2012

I think it was Mark Twain who described the cauliflower as 'a cabagge with a college education'.

Ann Janes »

THE FLOWER THAT NO GARDEN SHOULD BE WITHOUT

Watford Observer: Photograph of the Author

Posted on 11:37am Monday 23rd April 2012

They are one of the first plants to flower when spring arrives and will continue to add colour to the borders well into the summer months.

Ann Janes »

BUDDLEIA - THE BUTTERFLY BUSH

Watford Observer: Photograph of the Author

Posted on 9:33am Sunday 15th April 2012

As a group they are both vigorous and relatively trouble-free - you would think that these two assets alone would make them highly prized but life doesn't seem to work that way and buddleias tend to be treated as poor relations in the plant world, seemingly because they have minimum requirements and will grow in most situations.

Ann Janes »

TIPS ON BUYING THE BEST

Watford Observer: Photograph of the Author

Posted on 2:06pm Sunday 1st April 2012

Next weekend is Easter and traditionally that is the weekend the garden centres are full of people keen to buy lots of plants to start getting their gardens ready for summer.

Ann Janes »

CHOOSING THE BEST PLANTS

Watford Observer: Photograph of the Author

Posted on 8:16pm Monday 26th March 2012

Getting the right plant is more than just crossing a name from your list.

Ann Janes »

ANGELS TRUMPET!`

Watford Observer: Photograph of the Author

Posted on 6:04pm Sunday 11th March 2012

They are big, bold and beautiful but do need to be treated with care as every bit is poisonous.

Ann Janes »

DRAMATIC AND EXOTIC - EASIER THAN YOU MIGHT THINK!

Watford Observer: Photograph of the Author

Posted on 6:24pm Monday 5th March 2012

Why is that camellias are overlooked by so many gardeners? Could it be because their dramatic and exotic blooms give the impression that they are difficult to look after?

Ann Janes »

EARLY WARNINGS

Watford Observer: Photograph of the Author

Posted on 9:33am Monday 27th February 2012

Following the lack of snow and rain over the winter months I suppose it was inevitable that there would be warnings of a water shortage but it seems increasingly probable that there will be a hosepipe ban.

Ann Janes »

JAPANESE QUINCE

Watford Observer: Photograph of the Author

Posted on 9:02am Monday 20th February 2012

The fruit are edible and can be used instead of the true quince which is quite a different plant

Ann Janes »

LOOK TO THE FUTURE

Watford Observer: Photograph of the Author

Posted on 3:02pm Monday 6th February 2012

A good time for gardeners to stay indoors and keep warm whilst doing some serious planning for the coming summer.

Ann Janes »

FERNS - AN ATTRACTIVE SOLUTION FOR A PROBLEM AREA

Watford Observer: Photograph of the Author

Posted on 8:02pm Sunday 29th January 2012

Ferns have been with us for a long, long time and man's fascination with them is nothing new.

Ann Janes »

A CLIMBER FOR ALL SEASONS

Watford Observer: Photograph of the Author

Posted on 9:41am Monday 23rd January 2012

Climbers are amongst the most versatile and valuable of garden plants and high on the list of the best of these are clematis.

Ann Janes »

A SPLASH OF COLOUR FOR WINTER

Watford Observer: Photograph of the Author

Posted on 10:34am Monday 16th January 2012

So many gardens are short of bright colour at this time of year.

Ann Janes »

DOES YOUR GARDEN NEED SOME SPARKLE?

Watford Observer: Photograph of the Author

Posted on 7:28pm Sunday 8th January 2012

Gardens don't have to be uninviting gloomy places during the cold months. It really isn't good sense to allow our gardens to lapse into no-go areas during the winter.

Ann Janes »

A TIME TO ASSESS YOUR GARDEN

Watford Observer: Photograph of the Author

Posted on 6:37pm Sunday 1st January 2012

The beginning of the year is a good time to sit back and think over the successes and failures of the past year in the garden.

Ann Janes »

HELP YOUR HOUSEPLANTS THROUGH THE WINTER

Watford Observer: Photograph of the Author

Posted on 6:38pm Sunday 11th December 2011

The winter can be a tough time for indoor plants as well as those living outside.

Ann Janes »

BERRIES WORTH GROWING

Watford Observer: Photograph of the Author

Posted on 8:25pm Saturday 19th November 2011

Just how much should we believe of the sales blurb relating to ease of growth, quality and quantity of fruit and, of course, greatness of taste?

Ann Janes »

CONTAINERS FOR ALL SEASONS

Watford Observer: Photograph of the Author

Posted on 3:36pm Wednesday 2nd November 2011

IfI was starting with a new container my choice would be dwarf conifers and perhaps some ivy.

Ann Janes »

ALL YEAR CONTAINERS

Watford Observer: Photograph of the Author

Posted on 11:48am Monday 24th October 2011

Save some time and effort by permanent planting hanging baskets and containers.

Ann Janes »

GETTING READY FOR WINTER!

Watford Observer: Photograph of the Author

Posted on 4:04pm Monday 10th October 2011

Where are we with the weather?

Ann Janes »

MORE ON EVERGREENS

Watford Observer: Photograph of the Author

Posted on 8:30pm Sunday 2nd October 2011

What a change in the weather - we are told the hottest October day ever recorded. It was certainly back to the serious watering!

Ann Janes »

UNSUNG HEROES

Watford Observer: Photograph of the Author

Posted on 1:45pm Sunday 25th September 2011

In my book evergreens are the unsung heroes of our gardens.

Ann Janes »

TIME TO PICK OUT THE BEST

Watford Observer: Photograph of the Author

Posted on 3:54pm Monday 12th September 2011

The best and tastiest of this year's crop has been 'Piccolo'

Ann Janes »

MAKING THE MOST OF YOUR PLANTS

Watford Observer: Photograph of the Author

Posted on 8:55pm Tuesday 30th August 2011

Cool days, incessant rain and cold nights - no wonder our plants are bewildered.

Readers who submit articles must agree to our terms of use. The content is the sole responsibility of the contributor and is unmoderated. But we will react if anything that breaks the rules comes to our attention. If you wish to complain aboutthis article, contact us here.

Recent Blog Entries

April 2014 »
S M T W T F S
30 31 01 02 03 04 05
06 07 08 09 10 11 12
13 14 15 16 17 18 19
20 21 22 23 24 25 26
27 28 29 30 01 02 03

RSS





About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree