Plants

Bold plant combinations for summer borders

Four plant combinations to add colour and drama to your summer borders. 

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Plant combinations for borders

Four plant combinations to add colour and drama to your summer borders. 

Malverleys in Hampshire is a garden filled with colourful drifts of dreamy planting. Its numerous garden rooms allow for variety and makes the garden a wonderful place to explore. Head gardener Mat Reese is the brain behind the design and here you can see four of his stunning plant combinations for summer borders. 

 

WEDDING RING BORDER

Make Romanian strawberry jam

Gardener and cook Jojo Tulloh shares a recipe for strawberry jam with a twist. 

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Make Romanian strawberry jam

Gardener and cook Jojo Tulloh shares a recipe for strawberry jam with a twist. 

Romanian Strawberry Jam

 

Bring back the buttonhole

Join us in our campaign to bring back the buttonhole. 

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Bring back the buttonhole

Join us in our campaign to bring back the buttonhole. 

Join the Gardens Illustrated campaign

 

 

When we recently spotted a dapper chap wearing flowers casually tucked into his lapel, we realised just how lovely a buttonhole can be. And what better way is there of enjoying the beauty of plants up close?

Pink display for container planting

Gardener Jacky Mills captures some of the lightness of early summer with a stunning container display that celebrates the freshness of May's flowers. 

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Container planting ideas

Gardener Jacky Mills captures some of the lightness of early summer with a stunning container display that celebrates the freshness of May's flowers. 

At this time of year the lanes around our house in the Welsh Marches are awash with froths of cow parsley, flecked with pink from red campion and ragged robin. Lines of hawthorn hedge, smothered in creamy-white flowers, are frequently interrupted by majestic copper beeches, rising up resplendent in their distinctive purple foliage. I chose a dark-leaved form of Actaea simplex for the foundation of this pink-and-white arrangement.

Flowering dogwoods

Flowering dogwoods are often overlooked but their glorious early summer flowers are a delightful addition to the garden. Horticulturist Andy McIndoe recommends some of the best. 

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Flowering dogwoods

Flowering dogwoods are often overlooked but their glorious early summer flowers are a delightful addition to the garden. Horticulturist Andy McIndoe recommends some of the best. 

Cornus is a genus for all seasons. Known as dogwoods or cornels there are around 60 species of Cornus, ranging from low, creeping, sub shrubs to large trees. Those grown for their leaves are some of the most beautiful foliage shrubs. Dogwoods grown for the colour of their stems light up the winter garden. Flowering dogwoods wisely hold back their floriferous performance until early summer, after any possible competition from our more familiar flowering trees. Here are some of the best flowering dogwoods. 

Gnocchi with sage butter

A simple, satisfying recipe that draws attention to the rustic flavours of sage and garlic. 

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Gnocchi with sage butter

A simple, satisfying recipe that draws attention to the rustic flavours of sage and garlic. 

Herbs have an amazing ability to lift the flavour of any dish. Sage is perhaps one of the most common garden herbs; its frost-hardy, low maintenance and evergreen, producing flavourful leaves throughout the year. In the May issue of Gardens Illustrated, herb expert Jekka McVicar lists the essential culinary herbs that no gardener should be without, you can see the list here, and shares recipes that celebrate both the appearance and flavour of some of the most well known garden herbs.

Culinary herbs

From spearmint to French tarragon, herb expert Jekka McVicar lists the essential culinary herbs that no gardener cook should be without. 

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Culinary herbs

From spearmint to French tarragon, herb expert Jekka McVicar lists the essential culinary herbs that no gardener cook should be without. 

Herbs quite simply transform a meal into a feast - they not only make the food look and taste appealing, they also stimulate the digestion and are one of the essential ingredients that make a meal come alive. Furthermore, they look beautiful in the garden or in containers and, as many of the culinary herbs are from the Lamiaceae family, including thyme, rosemary, sage, oregano, mint and basil, they are very attractive to bees and butterflies.

Here are 12 essential culinary herbs that no keen gardener cook should be without. 

Using bulbs in perennial borders

Tips for using bulbs in perennial borders by Dutch garden designer, Jacqueline van der Kloet. 

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Using bulbs in perennial borders

Tips for using bulbs in perennial borders by Dutch garden designer, Jacqueline van der Kloet. 

For plantswoman and garden designer Jacqueline van der Kloet, bulbs are the lifeblood of the border in spring and in her garden just outside Amsterdam she has a stunning display of bulbs planted to perfection with years of experience.

Here she gives her tips for using bulbs in perennial borders.

Order your bulbs before 15 July so you can ensure you get what you want

Transform your front garden

A pretty front garden is a joy to come home to, as well as a delight for passers-by. Here are few ways in which you can transform your front garden. 

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Transform your front garden

A pretty front garden is a joy to come home to, as well as a delight for passers-by. Here are few ways in which you can transform your front garden. 

We should try to think differently about how we utilise our front gardens. It is a space that is often paved over and ignored but here, garden designer Adele Ford gives design pointers of things to consider that will help to make this space both stylish and practical. 

Storage

Primula

The delicate, unassuming appearance of primulas is often overlooked but here John Hoyland picks out a selection of primulas that stand-out from the crowd. 

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Primulas

The delicate, unassuming appearance of primulas is often overlooked but here John Hoyland picks out a selection of primulas that stand-out from the crowd. 

The Victorian botanical painter, Marianne North, travelled the British Empire studying and painting plants and flowers, becoming familiar with extraordinary, extravagant, exotic flowers that would have astonished her gardening contemporaries. Yet, in spite of this, it was in the uncomplicated flowers of native plants that she found most beauty.

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