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February 11 2008 English Garden Newsletter
Welcome to the English Garden Newsletter
This February has been very mild here so far, the snowdrops have been in flower for several weeks and the crocuses are bursting into flower - always a good sign that spring can’t be too far away.
The winter flowering pansies and primulas are still producing flowers despite the frosty mornings - they are really worth buying in the autumn to provide some flowers throughout the winter - and the plants will last for several years.
Late February is a good time to cut back Buddleia davidii, the butterfly bush. Cut last year's stems down to about six inches from the older harder wood.If you have plants which have been left unpruned for several years these can still be cut back to about three foot. They will flower later this year but be all the better for it.
Prune wisterias – you need to cut back the side shoots to two or three buds – this will encourage it to produce more flowers in late spring/early summer.
February is also a good time to cut back any perennials that you left to provide winter interest in your English Garden. You still have time to divide any large clumps of perennials that have become too unruly – dividing large clumps will also mean they will produce more flowers for you.
If you haven't planted any sweet peas you can now – I know I always go on about sweet peas but they are simply gorgeous!
Another job you can do is to plant lily bulbs in pots to flower in the summer.
It is best to have five bulbs in a 10 inch or 25cm container. As lilies get very top heavy choose a heavier container than plastic - terracotta or wooden ones are ideal, because their weight when filled with compost will give the plants more stability and mean they are less likely to fall over if there is a breeze.
If you have bought young plants such as plug plants then grow them on in a cold frame or greenhouse do not plant them out yet.
Sending red roses is a traditional way express love and friendship on Valentine's Day, as they mean” I love you! “ But here are some other flowers you could send each with their own particular meaning.
Anemone - Unfading love
Baby's Breath - Everlasting Love
Camellia - Admiration, Perfection, Good luck, Gift to a man
Camellia (Pink) - Longing for you
Camellia (Red) - You're a flame in my
Carnation (red) - My heart aches for you; admiration
Chrysanthemum (Red) - I Love You
Clove Pink –True love
Daisy, wild – Do you love me?
Four leaved clover – Be mine
Gardenia - You're lovely; secret love
Myrtle – love
Primrose - I can't live without you
Rose (Thornless) - Love at first sight
Tulip (Yellow) - There's sunshine in your smile
Tulip (Red) - Believe me, Declaration of love
Violet (White) - Let's take a chance on happiness
Here's the latest article from the English Garden site at BellaOnline.com.
How to deadhead the flowers in your English Garden and the reasons why you need to do it.
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