We are now closed on Sundays until Sunday the 19th of April.

                  Welcome to March, where it would seem we are rapidly moving to a full-blown spring. We have so far escaped the bitter cold of a true winter, but have paid the price with continual heavy rainfall.

                 Flowering periods are ahead of the norm with many mid-spring plants already showing their colours. Keep fingers crossed that we do not experience a late 'Beast from the East'. Be prepared by having a roll of frost-protection fabric to wrap up those tender plants at short notice.

                  •Spring bedding plants are now available, including many types of spring bulbs, primroses, pansies etc

              •Gardens are already emerging from dormancy but it is still no too late to cut back any old growth on perennials, as well as remove leaves from borders and plant a selection of spring-flowering bulbs

              •Various shrubs are showing their winter and early spring colours or flowers - red-barked dogwoods, berried ilex and winter jasmines are just a few. Other plants have a strong and sweet perfume at this time - winter box (sarcococca), winter honeysuckle and of course the lovely Chinese witch hazels and winter viburnums.

                 •From January we have decided to charge for our much-admired plastic bags, in an effort to get our gardening public to bring them back and re-use them. It is time to get real about plastics on every level! 

              •Our selection of tools from Spear & Jackson, the Kew Gardener collection, is one of the best available and has proved to be a great success with our landscapers and customers. It may be worth checking and oiling the tools you have and possibly consider replacements if needed    

              •Our cards from the Natural History Museum's Archivist collection are both beautiful and inexpensive and provide a lovely way to send a message with a floral gift. We have added ten new designs from Blume editions to add choices to our range which are equally as charming

              •We stock all the necessary components for irrigation systems from both Hozelock and Gardena. Your systems should be turned off or drained down for at least a few more weeks, and certainly not used until the chance of frost is diminished. We can supply any spare parts that are required.

                 As we start March, let us hope that the weather does not turn around and bite us as it did this year. In a perfect world we would like a lot less rain, some days of sunshine and a general lift in temperature. Keep an eye on conditions just in case quick action may be required. In the meantime enjoy your gardens,

               Richard Hood