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No Dig Champion Charles Dowding
55:44In this episode of Dig It, Peter Brown and Chris Day chat with Charles Dowding, a leading champion of no-dig gardening. Not only does he have a huge following, but his advice is born out of more than 40 years of growing, analysing, comparing, and recommending. We learn about the process of his No Dig philosophy from soil preparation, weed control, plant nutrition and how this method could work for you.No Dig pointers: Bed sizes: 1.2m (4ft) wide beds and any length to suite your garden size. Adding 1in of compost to the beds per year. Practise intercropping and successional plantings to maximise your cropping space. No crop rotation is necessary by having good, healthy soil. Do have weed-free pathways between your crops. Pathways between beds need to be around 40cm (16 inches) wide and again use cardboard and wood chip. Think about the orientation of your beds and if necessary, run them up and down if your site slopes. Be realistic - start small to stay in control so you can enjoy it and have fun growing. Making a bed in winter is usually best. Compost on clay soils work well with No Dig. Weeding ‘little and often’ is key to avoid weeds going to seed.Plant mentions: Garlic, Broccoli, Beetroot, Brussel sprout ‘Evesham Special’, Onions, Carrots, Kale, Potato varieties ‘Nicola’ and ‘Charlotte’. Weeds - dandelions, chickweed, couch grass, bindweed, mare’s tail and groundsel.Product mentions: A dibber or trowel, horticultural fleece or Enviromesh coverage, cardboard, mushroom compost, home compost, green waste compost, animal manures and wood chip. Hoes, compost bins (Dalek type) as well as home-made pallet compost. Coffee grounds, rock dust, charcoal and wood ash used sparingly make good compost additives.Professor Elaine Ingham is an American microbiologist and soil biology researcher and founder of Soil Foodweb Inc. She is known as a leader in soil microbiology and research of the soil food web.Dr Shewell-Cooper MBE, was a British organic gardener, a pioneer of no-dig gardening and a prolific writer of 37 gardening books!Charles Dowding’s website, courses videos and books Socials Twitter @charlesdowding Facebook @CharlesDowdingNoDig Instagram charles_dowdingOur thanks to Chiltern Music Therapy for providing the music. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
January '23 in the Garden
45:22There’s plenty to chat about in the garden this January as Dig It’s Peter Brown and Chris Day look at the gardening stories making the headlines, the Dig It Top 5 as well as tackling those gardening tasks.What’s onSnowdrop gardens and snowdrop days https://www.greatbritishgardens.co.uk/seasonal/snowdrops.htmlMonday 16th January: Small is Beautiful, a talk by Alys Fowler www.kew.org/kew-gardens/whats-on27-29th January RSPB Big Garden Birdwatch www.rspb.org.ukUntil 31st January: Winter Sculpture Exhibition at RHS Rosemoor www.rhs.org.ukIn the newsWelsh announce peat banWentworth House in Yorkshire wins Historic Houses Association competition.Plant Heritage, the conservation charity, has approached the Government in a bid to become part of the UKs commitment to conserving the country’s genetic diversity.Charity Greenfingers opens its new children’s garden at St Oswald’s Hospice in Newcastle.The 500-year-old ancient Waverley Abbey yew has been named tree of the year by the Woodland Trust.Vertical farmed trees grown under lights could help solve shortfalls in UK tree-planting targets.Restaurant fire hits Alton Garden CentreThe Garden Centre Association Christmas Display Winners announcedClover lawns on TikTok become a massive hit with over 62 million views!Defra letting down country over ‘plastic grass’ debate, claims The Lawn Association.The National Allotment Society has unveiled a new service encouraging housing developers and local government to include space for allotments in new developments.The Garden Media Guild awards for 2022 have been announced, including the Lifetime achievement award to rosarian Michael Marriott.The Pantone colour of the year for 2023 is Viva Magenta!Dig It Top 5 - bird foodNo 1 spot Wild bird, followed by bird peanuts at no 2, Henry Bell Fat Balls at no 3 with Wild Bird Mix (3kg bags) at no 4 and 20kg large sacks of Wild Bird Mix in 5th position.Plant mentions: Alfalfa, Apples, Brussel sprouts, Clover, Chamomile, Pears, Potatoes, micro greens, Hellebores, Rosa rugosa and YewProduct mentions: Secateurs, garden gloves, rhubarb forcer, large dustbin or trug.Our thanks to Chiltern Music Therapy for providing the music. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
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Not another jungle
1:10:20A passion for houseplantsIn this episode of Dig It, Peter Brown and Chris Day chat with Tony Le-Britton, passionate houseplant professional and owner of Not Another Jungle shop in Northampton. From humble beginnings growing houseplants in a greenhouse in the house (yes, really!) a childhood ambition fulfilled by appearing on the Gardeners’ World to developing his own special style and flair in helping everyone get connected with indoor plants through his social media channels and brand. Tony chats about his favourite plants, we get to grips with spider plants, top tips on growing indoors and more.Plants mentioned: Moth Orchids (Phalaenopsis), Aroids (members of the family Araceae and include many common houseplants like Aglaonemas, Monsteras, Philodendrons, Pothos and ZZ plants). Spider plant (Chlorophytum). Avoid Dutch-grown colour sprayed succulents and cacti or plants pinned with dried flowers or stick on googly eyes. Newer forms of Monstera have become popular with much smaller leaves and those with variegated leaves like Monstera Thai Constellation. Variegated plants are favourites of Tony as many of them are rare. Stephania erecta. Products mentioned: LED lights, Sandwich bags, sphagnum moss and rooting hormone. Dale Foot wool-based seed peat-free compost. Not Another Jungle specialist Houseplant Super Food. Empathy RootGrow.Tony’s desert island plant: Anything from the alocasia family as they produce big leaves which you can shelter under and you can eat the tubers!Luminaries who have inspired Tony: Geoff Hamilton and Monty Don You can find Tony on Instagram TikTok and FacebookTony’s shop: Not Another Jungle, 9 George Row, Northampton NN1 1DF.Not Another Jungle: Comprehensive Care for Extraordinary Houseplants, book is available to pre-order from Amazon. Publish date 6th April 2023.Our thanks to Chiltern Music Therapy for providing the music. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
December '22 in the Garden
55:37December 2022 in the Garden (short notes)Dig It hosts Peter Brown and Chris Day delve into the stories affecting gardeners and the gardening trade, plus jobs to do in the garden.In the newsThe RHS move their gooseberry and rhubarb national collections from Wisley to Bridgewater, near Manchester.The 5,000-year-old Newlands Corner Yews are highlighted as part of the Conservation Foundations 40th anniversary celebrations.Bumblebees less likely to land on flowers sprayed with fertilisers, says Bristol University report. Blue Diamond acquires Van Hage Garden centres.Hilliers grows to 22 garden centres with the acquisition of Rosebourne and increases tree production after buying a 200-acre farm in Liss, Hampshire.Toxic Ricinus communis (castor oil) found growing in council flower beds in North Wales.UK butterfly numbers drop to an all-time low says Butterfly ConservationCelebrate the King’s Coronation on 6th May 2023 by planting red, white and blue flowers and bulbs.Plant mentions: Bare-root hedging, Norway spruce and Nordmann fir, Poinsettia, lasagna planting red and white tulips and winter hardy pansies and violas, blue and white forget-me-nots and grape hyacinths. Yew and the Great Basin Bristlecone Pine, Poplars for pollarding and Hazel for withies. Scented Sarcococca and Daphne. The Ball Colegrave introduction Glimmer ™ mildew resistant double busy lizzies will be available next year.Product mentions: Reservoir Christmas stands, Hang Scentsicles on your artificial Christmas tree to give a festive smell, Bird feeds and fat balls, horticultural fleece. Pot feet for lifting your pots. Greenhouse cleaners - Jeyes Fluid or Agralan Citrox.Houseplant expert Jane Perrone shared her poinsettia thoughts on our podcast last year. Burnham Beeches is a National Nature Reserve famous for its ancient pollards; many are several hundred years old.Our thanks to Chiltern Music Therapy for providing the music. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
A chat with the President
1:03:05Alan’s down-to-earth world of gardeningPeter Brown and Chris Day chat with horticultural supremo Alan Down in this latest Dig It podcast.Alan has been incredibly active in the gardening trade from early days in commercial growing inGermany, developing skills in germinating tree seeds and in Somerset to setting up a very successfulgarden centre and most recently taking on a new role - President of the Horticultural TradesAssociation. Alan is an accomplished gardening writer and broadcaster, who also enjoys worldwidetravel, photography and even deer management!Plant mentions Wildflowers, pot chrysanthemums, spray chrysanthemum, tomato, bedding plants,Japanese maples, hellebores, hardy ferns, ornamental grasses, and native trees.Alan’s desert island plant: Apple tree or a citrus lemon or lime if the island was in the tropics.Product mentions and useful linksTwo recommended peat-free composts Melcourt SylvaGrow Compost, Westland New HorizonCompostThe popular gift vouchers from the Horticultural Trades Association (HTA) available from all GardenCentres and Nurseries who are HTA members.Hilliers Nurseries (container growing unit)Edible Bus Stop GroupCannington CollegePershore CollegeRoyal Horticultural Society educationBritish Deer SocietyInternational Plant Propagator’s SocietyLuminaries: Sir Harold Hillier, Roy Lancaster, Stewart Chambers and Stewart Brookfield, head ofhorticulture at Somerset College of Agriculture and Horticulture in the 1970s.HTA toxic plants list https://hta.org.uk/potentiallyharmfulplantsYou can follow Alan on these platformsYou can read Alan’s Blogs on gardening and travel on his website www.down-to-earth.co.ukGardening Candid appAlan on Instagram @alanedown Twitter @AlanEDown Candide UK: @AlanGardenMasterOur thanks to Chiltern Music Therapy for providing the music Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
November '22 in the Garden
1:02:23The mild weather continued into November but plenty of rain and wind brought the garden to a colourful if damp end to autumn. Peter Brown and Chris Day prepare for the bare-root planting season, delve into some of the popular news stories making the headlines, plus a look at some of those pressing jobs in the garden and with our beloved houseplants.What’s onMonday 7th November: Wilding Rural Enfield is an online talk by Ian Russell, principal engineer at Enfield Council’s Watercourse Team. Open 6-7pm. More details hereThursday 17th November: Gardens in My Life is the title of the 2022 annual lecture of the National Garden Scheme given by garden designer Arabella Lennox-Boyd.In the newsAmersham in Bloom crowned overall winner of this year’s RHS Britain in Bloom UK finals.Are gardener’s losing their parliamentary voice, asks Matthew Appleby? Featured in Amateur Gardening magazine, 23rd October issue.Garden Organic fighting for the future, plus their excellent Heritage Seed Library.Our Houseplant department at the Garden Centre has received a fantastic makeover. Look out for Beautanic Lifestyle range of hydroculture plants from Javado.Garden visiting remained as popular as ever this year with increased visitor numbers including Royal Botanic Gardens at Kew (top spot), RHS Wisley, in the third spot and Trentham Gardens in fifth spot.Do not forget to look for the spectacular magical illumination shows over the next couple of months at Waddesdon Manor, RHS Glow Gardens and the beautiful lakes and gardens at Leonardslee in West Sussex.A reminder about checking for hedgehogs prior to lighting a bonfire in the garden, plus The British Hedgehog Preservation Society are encouraging schools and colleges to take part in their ‘Pick litter to help hogs’ campaign.British Garden Centre group increases numbers to 62 with the acquisition of Mirfield Garden Centre in West Yorkshire.Plants mentionedBare-root planting season begins, including native hedges, roses, ornamental and fruit trees.Dahlia, Leylandii, Spotted Laurel, English Yew and Hollies. Plants suitable to take as hardwood cuttings include Willow, Dogwood and Hazel. Continue spring bulbs planting - Tulips, Narcissi and Crocus if you plan to create lasagna bulb displaysSow a few Broad beans (varieties such as ‘Aquadulce’ and ‘Super Aquadulce’), pot up bare-root strawberries for an early crop and sow Sweet Peas for earlier flowering next summer.Product mentionsRootGrow (Mycorrhizal friendly fungi). Potting or horticultural grit for soil improvement. Use a net over your pond to clear any leaves and use a wheatgerm feed for your fish. Plants that create aerial roots such as Monstera may need support so install a moss pole, which must be kept moist.Our thanks to Chiltern Music Therapy for providing the music. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
Garden Trade News
1:00:24In this edition of Dig It Chris Day chats with the editor of Garden Trade News (GTN) Trevor Pfeiffer. Trevor examines how the massive garden trade, suppliers of both products and plants help spread news and information as well as analysing the sales across the trade in the Best Sellers Charts. Trevor gives us some of his personal insights into the garden centre trade from sustainability and global warming to the massive ongoing peat-free compost debate! Trevor’s mantra is that growing plants gives you an optimistic point of view on life and we couldn’t agree more!Big breaking news stories The Wyevale sell off and the passing of Peter SeabrookGarden Heroes Guy Topping, MD of Barton Garden Centre located between Preston and Garstang. The garden centre set up includes a marina and an entertainment complex The Flower Bowl, which includes a cinema amongst other activities! Mike Burks, The Gardens Group of Garden Centres in Dorset and Somerset. Great ethos of getting garden centre teams motivated as well as plenty of communication through their proper tea breaks complete with a huge tea pot at 10am and 4pm every day! Floral Thursday world record for Greenfingers charity. The idea was fostered by Neil Grant, Managing Director of Ferndale Garden Centre in Sheffield to wear something flowery and it’s become popular as well as fun for fundraising opportunities.Awards New products at GLEE, a trade show held annually in Birmingham and the GTN Greatest Awards, teams are nominated for specific categories such as Best Christmas merchandising and Best Grotto.Garden magazines mentioned Garden News, Garden Answers, Gardeners’ World and Practical Gardening (no longer produced) and RHS The Garden magazine. HTA global warming news.Plants mentioned Apples, Poinsettias, Petunias, Pelargoniums (Geraniums), Taylors Autumn planted for Christmas potatoes and Trevor’s favourite, Squash Mashed Potato and Squash ‘Baked Potato’.Favourite garden centre Poppies Garden Centre, Saulmore Shore, By Oban in Argyll.Desert island luxury Trench digging shovel. Go for one with a metal shaft and handle which makes it extra strong, great for getting underneath roots when having to move plants!Products mentioned Garden lighting, both solar and low voltage. Westland Boost All-Purpose Plant food . Fito Orchid drip feeders .Discover more about Garden Trade News websiteOur thanks to Chiltern Music Therapy for providing the music. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
October '22 in the Garden
46:57Peter Brown and Chris Day start preparing for winter as well as providing us with a roundup of the latest news and views from the world of gardening.What’s onSaturday 1st – Sunday 2nd October: Buckingham Garden Centre’s Apple Weekend with Gerry Edwards, The Mid Shires Orchard Group, CPRE The Countryside Charity, BBOWT, Chrissie’s Owls (Saturday), plus Junior Gardening Club’s children’s best dressed apple competition. The North Buckinghamshire Beekeepers Association Honey Show is on the Sunday.Saturday 8th – Sunday 9th October: Waterperry Gardens Apple Weekend.Saturday 15th October, 10am-5pm: Autumn Fair at Harcourt Arboretum, Oxfordshire.Thursday, 20 October, 13:00 - 14:15: Garden Tour at Garden Organic, Ryton Gardens, COVENTRY, Warks, CV8 3LG.In the newsPlants named after the late The Queen Elizabeth II, include Clematis montana var. rubens 'Elizabeth' was bred by Jackmans in the 1950s.The list includes Rosa 'Queen Elizabeth' bred by Lammerts Rosa 'The Queen's Jubilee' was launched to celebrate the Diamond Jubilee of Queen Elizabeth II in 2012.Rosa 'Queen Elizabeth II' was bred by Harkness RosesOur Dig It top five apple maiden varieties1 ‘Discovery’2 ‘James Grieve’3 ‘Cox’s Self-Fertile’4 ‘Arthur Turner’4 ‘Egremont Russet’In the newsBall Colegrave announce the top varieties voted by visitors to their trade event back in the summer. Last year was the Year of the Courgette and Fleuroselect in conjunction with Royal Horticultural Society grew some 70 different varieties at two of their gardens at Bridgewater and Rosemoor. The plants were judged by the RHS technical committee and these new varieties were awarded the top Award of Garden Merit (AGM) Cucurbita ‘Color’, ‘Lorea’ and ‘Brice’.RHS Hyde Hall reveals people’s choice Viola winnerUpdated - Plants and their toxicity the HTA Guide to Potentially Harmful Plants and now includes pets. You can access it at this linkProduct mentionsHomebase Peat Free, Aldi Peat Free, Westland New Horizon Peat Free (best of the bunch so far) and Miracle Gro Peat Free.Vine weevil Control– opt for Bug Clear Ultra Vine Weevil Killer as a soil drench or look at natural nematotode control.Plant mentionsSpring bulbs including Alliums, Crocus, Daffodils, Snowdrops and Hyacinths for planting now. Tulips often benefit from being planted a little later into the autumn and early winter. Don’t delay get your ‘prepared’ hyacinths and Narcissi ‘Paperwhite’ established if you are looking for Christmas colour. Available in store. Heuchera and Heucherella plants with their decorative foliage work well with bulbs in borders and in containers.As the soil becomes more workable, think about getting your autumn onions and garlic established before the weather turns cold.Our thanks to Chiltern Music Therapy for providing the music. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
Container Gardening with Kathy Brown
59:43For the past 33 years Kathy and her husband Simon have created a simply amazing Manor House Garden in Stevington, just north of Bedford. It’s a garden full of inspiration, buoyed by Kathy’s keen use of colour and structure as well as plenty of great plants. In this episode of Dig it, Peter Brown and Chris Day discover more about how the garden evolved, advice on growing plants in containers using recipe-style plantings, the crocking debate, tales of a donkey, opening a garden to the public and using edible flowers in baking.Plants mentioned: Beech hedging, Eucalyptus, Pine trees, avenues of Betula jacquemontii, Metasequoia glyptostroboides and Ginkgo biloba. Wisteria, Weeping Cedrus, xeriscape plants such as succulents. Perennials Agapanthus, Alliums, Japanese anemones, Gladiolus callianthus 'Murielae' (Abyssinian gladiolus, RHS AGM), Sedum, Hellebore Gold Collection (outward facing blooms perfect in pots) Helleborus ‘Frosty’ is a good one, Verbena bonariensis, ornamental grasses including Calamagrostis ‘Overdam’, Echinaceas. Hyacinths, Dwarf and species Tulips, Tulip clusiana 'Lady Jane' and Dwarf Narcissi like ‘January Gold’ (early) and ‘Pipit’ (later flowering). Good flavours to use with cake bakes include scented rose petals as these provide the most flavour as well as lavender.Kathy’s desert island plant: English lavender – wonderfully versatile, you can cook with it and use it in a wide variety of ways as well as producing a wonderful tea to enjoy.Products mentioned: White Himalayan birch plantings at Anglesey Abbey. National Garden Scheme (NGS). Solardome ® greenhouse. Beth Chatto’s dry garden – a converted car park to a gravel garden. Piet Oudolf, a Dutch garden designer, plant nursery man and author who practices a more naturalistic approach to gardening. Composts: Dalefoot Wool Compost and Jack’s Magic All Purpose Improved Compost (reduced peat) and New Horizon Peat-Free Compost. Broadleaf p4, using John Innes Compost as an additive. Kathy likes to use Evergreen Compost , who offer peat-free, peat-reduced and a traditional compost containing sphagnum moss peat. Water retaining granules such as Broadleaf P4 and Swelgel, which can be added to compost and soil to help retain moisture around the plant’s roots. Garden photographer Clive Nichols and the early morning photo shoot.Kathy Brown’s Books The Edible Flower Garden, Container Gardening, Kathy Brown's Recipes For Easy Container Gardening and A Bulb for all SeasonsTo find out more about Kathy’s Garden, opening details, Kathy’s lectures and how to book a visit click hereOur thanks to Chiltern Music Therapy for providing the music. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
September '22 in the Garden
47:06After a challenging hot and dry summer in the garden we enter the month of September and a change in season. Dig It’s Peter Brown and Chris Day tackle some essential tasks for the month, plus they look at the latest garden news and events coming up at the Garden Centre.Wednesday 21st September: Orchid Day 11am-3pm at the Garden Centre. We will be joined by Manos Kanellos, top orchid guru and a previous Dig It podcast guest and he will be talking at 11am and 2pm as well as providing MOTs for orchids in need of a re-pot.23rd – 25th September RHS Malvern Autumn Show.Saturday 1st and Sunday 2nd October, 10am-4pm both days. Our Apple Weekend featuring RHS fruit expert Gerry Edwards, who will be helping to identify apple fruits for our customers and the Mid Shire Orchard Group making delicious apple juice and offering apple growing advice, plus BBOWT and much more. On Sunday we host the North Bucks Beekeepers' Association's Honey Show.Our Dig It top 5 perennials (in 1-litre pots)In joint fifth position Lupinus ‘Gallery Blue’ and Dianthus ‘Tickled Pink’, 4th spot Rudbeckia ‘Goldstrum’, 3rd position Penstemon ‘Pensham Laura’, in 2nd Verbena bonariensis and at number 1 Coreopsis ‘Early Sunrise’.Plant mentionsVegetable plug plants and sowing vegetable seeds including winter brassicas, chicory, endive, Chinese cabbage. Crocosmia, spring bulbs, Lavender, Teasle seeds and Caladiums. Bare-root apple varietiesProduct mentions Compost bins, Bokashi kitchen composters. Orchid products from Growth Technology Clip Gloves are available in store.News linksChatsworth historic gardens revealed by heatwave and Chatsworth’s new alpine garden reimagined by top garden designer Tom Stuart Smith.Futuristic ‘flower design’ greenhouse at National Trust Woolbeding GardensThe new RHS Wisley Clear Lake and ways to save water in the garden.Rosebourne Weyhill opened by horticulturalist and TV presenter David Domoney and the young 14-year-old entrepreneur with his dog pampering rangePalladian Bridge reopens after 8 years at Prior Park Landscape Gardens and is very similar to the one at Stowe Landscape Gardens.Historic wall gardens at Blenheim Palace Gardens goes no-dig and organic.Dr Amir Khan is the new patron of the British Hedgehog Preservation Society.A retirement home for gnomes at Amelia Trust Care Farm in Glamorgan.Our thanks to Chiltern Music Therapy for providing the music. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.