The Forest Log and Tool Store is a handsome garden structure and, now that winter is approaching, a very useful acquisition. Martyn Loach purchased one recently and here he explains how it is assembled.
'Grow Your Own' magazine, the UK's best selling kitchen garden magazine, has just announced its Great British Growing Awards, and Nathan James Dodd has been looking through the winners.
The magazine's readers have been voting over the past few months and winners' certificates will be presented at the Edible Garden Show that takes place at the Alexandra Palace in London between 20-22 March.
'Best Greenhouse Brand' was won by Halls Greenhouses who have an impressive range of all types and sizes of greenhouse, from the compact 6ft x 4ft to a cavernous 8ft x 14ft model. They offer superb value for money, traditional or 'curved' designs, lean to's and wall gardens with various glazing options and a milled aluminium or powder coated green finish
Perhaps surprisingly as it concentrates on ornamental flowers, the RHS Chelsea Flower Show won 'Best Gardening Event'. In second place was the RHS Hampton Court Show that we reported on in July of last year. However, cut flowers can be an attractive addition to an allotment and many will attract pest predators and pollinators.
Thompson and Morgan was successful in the 'Best Vegetable Seed Range'. They recommend these top varieties to try this coming season: Strawberry 'Sweetheart', Raspberry 'Ruby Beauty', Courgette 'Shooting Star', Onion 'Hylander' and Broccoli 'Sibsey'.
The readers put Spear and Jackson in first place for 'Best Garden Tools'. Buying the correct tools is very important but maintaining them is just as vital. When you finish working in the garden make sure all the dirt is washed off and regularly oil and sharpen blades.
Ecologically aware gardeners, will be interested that the Organic Slug Pellets from Growing Success scooped the Best Eco-Friendly Vegetable Growing Product. The manufacturers also emphasized the benefits of reducing water usage by not watering in the middle of the day, digging in plenty of organic matter and mulching.
Best Community Growing Project went to Incredible Edible Todmorden who have turned an ordinary space into an enjoyable area for everyone. Crops include everything from corn to strawberries, so why not approach your local council and offer to undertake a similar transformation?.
Finally, disappointingly 'The Gardener' did not win 'Blog of the Year', this went to www.allotment_garden.org, but there's always next year!
Nathan James Dodd
With gardens becoming smaller, neighbours closer and roads busier, we all suffer from different types of noise pollution. But, as Andy Taylor reports, Forest have now come up with a new kind of fencing that minimizes this nuisance.
Although gardening activity in February may not be so frenetic as during the summer months, there's still plenty to be done and Spring is just around the corner. Nathan James Dodd suggests the jobs you should be tackling in the garden this month.
Dan Everton helps you look after your pond during the February with some tips on the precautions you can take to avoid the water freezing over, and advice on keeping fish at this time of the year.
Heating will be a deciding factor on the variety of plants you are able to grow in a greenhouse and the number of plants that can be kept over winter. Here, Robert Hall goes through the pros and cons of the different types of heating that are available.