All a flutter


ButterflyA couple of years ago, with the design help of Neil Lucas from Knoll Gardens, I planted a bank with a range of low maintenance grasses and perennial plants.

One of the biggest, and most striking plants ‘Eupatorium purpureum’ is in full flower and it’s a beauty.

I went to have a close look at it yesterday and was delighted to see it covered with Peacock butterflies, there must have been twenty or more feasting on the flowers. 

It was such a pretty sight and I’m wondering whether I’ve seen so many butterflies this summer as last autumn, I put up an insect hotel (a grand name for a box of twigs, pine cones and hollow stems) to help butterflies, bees and lacewings over-winter. I’d like to think it has helped anyway.

Another grand sight are my tomatoes. This year, I’ve experimented by planting them in smaller pots, but I’ve used my compost and I’ve been staggered at how well they’ve done.

They’re in the greenhouse, about 8ft tall (and would have grown much taller, but I pinched out the tops in early August) and look like producing the biggest crop of tomatoes I’ve ever grown.

The weather has helped, as has feeding with Flower Power (two to three times a week). I must take some pictures of them over the bank holiday weekend.

Another job for the weekend is to sprinkle some more my organic slug pellets around newly planted plug plants and seedlings. The recent wet weather has produced an invasion of slugs and snails and some of the younger plants are very vulnerable at the moment.

I’ve completely stopped using the ordinary metaldehyde pellets, because of my worries of the effect on pets and birds, but these new pellets (based on naturally occurring iron phosphate) are safe to use, even around edible plants.
I’ve not got much time this weekend, as I’ve got QVC shows every morning and the family are visiting. But if I get a moment, I want to finish cutting back my English Lavender, a job I always enjoy because it smells so good!
Happy gardening

1 Comment

  1. veronica smith April 6, 2014 at 9:22 am -  Reply

    hi Richard could you please tell me how to get rid of ants tried all that’s on the market even boiling water ,but they come back with in a couple of day we are over run with them thanks veronica

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