In Gardeners World 2018 episode 3, at Longmeadow, Monty Don is making plans for the summer, so he starts dahlias and other tender perennials into growth and sows annual climbing plants to light up his borders with colour.
Frances Tophill visits The Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh to meet an expert on the most exotic plant of the tropical border, ginger. Plus the team explore one of the most colourful perennials of the summer in the Isle of Wight, visiting a garden which is filled with daylilies.
Gardeners World 2018 episode 3
Hemerocallis (daylilies) produce elegant, usually trumpet-like blooms in summer and are easy to grow in many gardens. Individual flowers are short-lived but each plant produces many flowers, so displays will last for weeks. Daylilies thrive in well-drained, fertile soil, but tolerate poorer soils and heavy clay. Avoid planting in heavy shade and borders that dry out in summer.
For welcome assurance that the brighter days of spring are on their way, look no further than snowdrops (Galanthus). They are surprisingly varied in height, flower size, shape and even colouring. Given a moist soil they will multiply into drifts and provide plenty of plants to share with fellow gardeners.
How to grow pak choi
Pak choi can be used in salads or stir-fries as a baby leaf, or used in a variety of Oriental dishes as a cooked vegetable when semi-mature or as fully-grown heads. Sow seed from April to July in a sunny position in fertile soil. Sow seed thinly, 2cm (¾in) deep, in rows 30-38cm (12-15in) apart; the wider distance is best for semi-mature to full-size heads. Earlier and later sowings for baby leaf can also be made under cloches or fleece in mild areas.
How to grow ginger
Zingiber are aromatic rhizomatous perennials with alternate, oblong leaves in two ranks, and cone-like inflorescences with overlapping, sometimes brightly coloured bracts, and 3-petalled flowers.
Cannas are vibrant tender perennials that produce bold leaves and showy flowers in shades of red, orange, yellows and pinks. It is a useful summer bedding plant for both containers and borders, but does well in cool conservatories in summer. Cannas can be grown in borders or containers. They are grown from rhizomes (underground stems), which you will find for sale in late winter in bags of shredded paper, or sold loose. Cannas are easy to grow from rhizomes, but you can also buy plants over the summer. They are tender plants, but in warmer parts of the UK you can leave the rhizomes in the ground with a covering of mulch.