Dec 022011

Columbia Road

On a quiet day at work once, we were playing a game of ‘If you had a plant named after you, what plant would it be?’ (such are the conversations you have when you work on a gardening magazine). For me, my friend Chauney suggested an ornamental cabbage. He really is such a wag.

I almost wouldn’t mind being named after these cabbages, though – they look like roses.

Actually, there is a plant named ‘Veronica’. Is it a gorgeous rose or sweetly scented sweet pea? No. It’s a cauliflower – one of those lime green romanesco ones.

Oct 212011

Regent's Park

I find this pot a bit depressing. It’s perfectly nice and everything, but the sight of it makes my heart sink a little.

Let me explain. This container contains all the usual suspects for winter interest –  ivy, tree heather, cyclamen, pansies and an ornamental cabbage. Go to any garden centre now and these plants are pretty much what’s on offer. And they’ll continue to be on offer until next spring. And therein lies my problem.

Whereas the choice of plants for summer pots is vast, with lots of potential for colour and exciting plant combinations, there are hardly any options for winter pots. It’s quite hard to find an unsual cyclamen or pansy, let alone come up with an amazing planting combination. It takes real skill and imagination to come up with anything a bit different for winter, and lots of people don’t bother.

And so, the hunt is on. I will endeavour to bring you some winter pots that are truly amazing, and hereby ban red cyclamen and purple pansies from this blog. Let’s just hope I that doesn’t mean its pages will be empty…