Discovering the lost charms of diamond lilies

Standing tall, fresh and defiant amid the season’s death and decay, they thumb their noses at autumn’s dullness – exotic punks who remind us it’s not all doom and gloom. Nerines are my new favourite plant.


They’re kind of thing you see in catalogues or online gardening sites but never buy – but what a mistake! I guess they don’t exactly get off to a good start when you see the …Read More

Cactus Dahlia

Happy 70th birthday Bakker Spalding!

So our lovely company reaches the grand old age of 70. Which got me thinking, what was the gardening world like in 1945 when the company was born?
As Europe rose from the ashes of war, destruction was apparent in every part of life, from ravaged cities to stately homes turned over to emergency military hospitals – not even plant nurseries escaped the carnage. The commercial cultivation of ornamental plants had …Read More



Orchids. The very word conjures up exotic flowers, strange scents and an air of mystery. That or a dodgy scented bubble bath which has come from a chemical manufacturing plant, rather than the leaves n’ flowers kind….
A big part of their appeal comes from the fact that they were considered rare and difficult to grow. However, the warmth of modern homes, plus new propagation techniques, coupled with the fact that …Read More