Burbage metal and wooden gates, fencing and railing have recently been added to GardenSite, and last week David Coton took the opportunity to visit their Cannock base.
Walls, whether they mark a boundary or support your house, are on the whole functional and unappealing. Nathan James Dodd suggests using wall plaques and ornaments to improve their appearance.
Whether classical, contemporary or comic, these enhancements break up a wall's monotony, adding interest that will transform and add character to a garden or patio space.
Haddonstone's Parthenon Friezes are the epitome of classical design. They are reproductions of originals that date from 443BC and depict the Panathenaic Procession. As can be expected, the detail is superb and the reconstituted stone will weather beautifully with age.
Also from Haddonstone are plaques reflecting the characteristics of the four seasons, each one decorated with imagery of a particular time of the year with garlands of flowers, sheaves of corn, cornucopia of fruit and fire & ice, all finely captured in high quality stone work.
There are several masks to choose from. The fabled Green Woman, or a Cherub, and at the opposite end of the spectrum a Brelgian Wall Mask that is either grotesque or amusing depending on your disposition. Somewhat more spiritual would be a depiction of the Buddha or a Cham Plaque that originates from ancient south east Asian culture.
Toscano also have a Demon on the Loose and Gaston the Gothic Gargoyle who normally is seen taunting passers by from high up on the walls of European cathedrals.
More flippant and colourfully entertaining are Citron the Cockatoo and Phineas the Flapping Macaw, high quality resin depictions of exotic birds that will surprise guests even before their first mojito.
However, most appropriate would be Haddonstone's Tradescant Wall Plaque. This is a splendid portrait of King Charles II's gardener who introduced several new plant species from America. Based on a 17th century original, John Tradescant is pictured with trowel and spade at the ready.
With warmer weather and an early Easter, the garden centre is busy at the moment with customers stocking up on summer bedding plants - snapdragons, cornflowers, cosmos, verbena, phlox, petunia, As well as filling planters, hanging baskets and borders with colour that will last all summer, there are always plenty of jobs to do in the garden during April and David Coton has these suggestions.
Every gardener must have noticed a decline in the bee population over recent years. Intensive farming that demands the use of toxic chemicals, climate change and parasite infestation have all been put forward as potential causes, it's a worrying trend but one that we can all help to reverse.
As an excellent alternative to conventional products, Trimetals' storage solutions blend top quality manufacture with contemporary style. Their range has now been extended to include two new maintenance free sheds and Robert Hall has all the details.
Zest 4 Leisure manufactures a large variety of timber garden furniture, fencing and leisure products, David Coton visited their brand new nine acre site near Chester last week to find out more about current development and future plans.