Expert Gardening Advice


Whether you’re a keen gardener or a complete novice, now is the time of year when we all want to be making the most of our gardens, particularly if we’re going to have a summer like last year, so I decided to ask our gardening experts for some advice, which will hopefully benefit all of us. I’m starting this mini series on the blog off with some great suggestions from George Clowes, our expert guest from de Jager, who I invited into my garden earlier this week. De Jager are renowned for their wonderful bulbs, so not only was George suggesting plants that will flower this summer, he was also recommending late summer planting for flowering next spring.

Rather than writing all his advice down, I thought it would be good to hear George’s suggestions, so we started off by talking about areas that have full sun throughout the summer months…

All the plants and bulbs George mentioned there are on-air over the Easter weekend, but here are the item numbers to give you a head start. The delphinium aurora are 514947 and they are to plant now, as are the lupins (518721), which you will get nine plants of; three in blue, three in pink and three in white. The snapdragons (518403) are also to plant straight out in your garden and they come in five different colours.

The paeony tulips George mentioned are 518896 and you will get thirty-six bulbs to plant in late summer. There is a choice of pink and red, or purple and orange… my bedroom was painted in the latter two colours when I was growing up in the 1960s because my sister and I shared and as she was older than me, she was allowed to choose. The mini multi-flowering daffodils (518898) are also on pre-order for the end of August and, as you could probably tell from the video, George was very keen to mention they are beautifully scented.

I next asked George what to plant underneath the hedge along the border of my garden, which a lot of us have for privacy, but the hedge tends to take all the moisture…

The vinca, or periwinkle, George mentioned is not in George’s de Jager show but the gladiolus communis byzantinus is (518899) and again, is on pre-order to be sent out at the end of August. Both the areas we have looked at so far are in full sun but the other side of my garden is in the shade and I also have a problem with ground elder. Here are George’s suggestions for suppressing weeds…

George doesn’t have hardy geraniums or alchemilla mollis in his show but he does have the beautifully scented primula belerina (517700). If you would like to hear more tips from George and see other beautiful plants and bulbs, he is on-air on Good Friday at 9 a.m. and he has a full hour show with Dale Franklin at midday on Easter Monday. Next month, I’m inviting Richard Jackson over to talk plants and treatments.

There are a lot of gardening shows on QVC over the Easter weekend as you might expect, and do watch out for the Thompson and Morgan TSV on Easter Monday – impatiens (busy lizzies, to you and I), which are so good too see back in our gardens, as they are incredibly easy to grow in sun or light shade. These are Double-Flowering Wild Romance and you will get six jumbo plug plants (517950).

Talking of gardens, my new garden furniture is on its way to my house from Nottingham as I write this on Thursday morning, just in time for Easter weekend – I’ll put a photo of it on next week’s blog. Also on the way from Nottingham today is my mum. I am so pleased she feels well enough to come and spend Easter with us – it will be the first time she has met my daughter’s boyfriend Reece and his children.

Before I finish, thanks for all your opinions on my photos on last week’s blog. The consensus on my blog was the ‘orange’ one, but on Instagram most people plumped for the yellow – I’ll just have to alternate!

Have a wonderful Easter weekend, whatever you have planned, and if you are going to be enjoying the promised sunshine, please remember to use your Ultrasun (or other sun protection) – especially important if you haven’t had a winter sun holiday, as your skin will be at its palest and most vulnerable.

I’ll see you tomorrow (Friday) for some Mally at 3 p.m. and NYDJ (Not Your Daughter’s Jeans) in my regular Fashion on Friday slot, followed by more FOF on the Style Channel at 6 p.m.

By the way, if you’re a fan of the Prai neck and decollete products, do check out this week’s Big Deal on the QVC Beauty Channel.

Much love,
Julia xx


  1. Helen April 20, 2019 at 9:04 am -  Reply

    Julia, what a great idea to have a gardening expert in your garden! It has given me an idea, what about QVC offering a competition for QVC customers to have a similar experience? I think there will be a lot of interest.
    Just an idea.

  2. Kathy April 20, 2019 at 11:02 am -  Reply

    Hi Julia,
    Re last blog, yes Pompey did win the CheckaTrade cup Final… Wembley was buzzing amazing atmosphere there. So pleased for them, although the didn’t play all that well first half. Took ages to get out of the car park as all ways but and a wonderful day. Last fews games now.. will we go up or be in the play offs.
    Lovely having a garden expert round to give you idea’s, i’m sure he will give you plenty, ours is looking quite good at the moment. We have a wildlife patch at the bottom near to where Ian’s new shed./ cabin is going so will hide it with some trellis and climbing plants. Leylanii trees are a nightmare luckily we don’t have any lots of others trees though ( with birds boxes which are all occupied. ! ) Do they not block out the sun from your garden or if not your yours the neighbours. ? Are you semi detached the garden looks quite narrow from the photo’s,

    Enjoy Easter, with your mum hope she is feeling better now..I do miss my mum but she lived till 95. Ian’s working i’m afriad so i will enjoy the sunshine with the dogs.
    Take care


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