Gardeners’ World 2021 Winter Specials episode 4: In this special episode, Monty and the team look back at more floral highlights from the series, including alliums and auriculas, houseplants and creative containers, as well as the scented stars of the summer garden.
There’s also another chance to see what the Gardeners’ World viewers were getting up to in their gardens last year as they share their horticultural adventures.
Gardeners’ World 2021 Winter Specials episode 4
Succeed with containers
Containers filled with seasonal or permanent plants are extremely versatile. They can brighten up a corner of the garden, provide handy herbs by the kitchen or make the entrance look welcoming. Yet, life in containers can be tough for plants, so choose the right compost and carry out regular maintenance to ensure they put on a good show.
Containers are the perfect home for colourful annuals and half-hardy perennials – both of which are sometimes called ‘patio plants’ or bedding. Most shrubs, climbers, herbaceous perennials, grasses and even trees can be grown in containers. Fruit and vegetables can be successful too, as can some roses.
How to grow crown imperials
Fritillaria imperialis, commonly known as crown imperial, is a bulb native to mountainous regions in Turkey, western Iran and eastwards to Kashmir. It is grown for its large and spectacular clusters of bell-shaped flowers in late-spring.
They need a deep, rich, well-drained loam soil, preferably alkaline, and a warm, sunny position where they can be left undisturbed for many years. Where soil conditions are less than ideal it is advisable to thoroughly prepare the site before planting, digging in some well-rotted manure or rich leafmould and grit. Simply putting grit in the bottom of planting holes on heavy soils will achieve little. Add a dressing of Vitax Q4 Fertiliser at about 140g per sq m (4oz per sq yd) before planting in the early autumn.
Plant bulbs deeply at a depth of at least 30cms (1ft) and a similar distance apart. Shallow planting will lead to poor flowering after the first year. If the soil is too wet to allow planting at this depth then it is not a suitable site. Consider constructing a suitable raised bed. It is claimed that planting the bulb on its side may prevent rot when the bulb is dormant during the summer. Over a season, however, bulbs tend to right themselves.
Gardeners’ World 2021
Gardeners’ World is a long-running BBC Television programme about gardening, first broadcast on 5 January 1968 and still running as of 2019. Its first episode was presented by Ken Burras and came from Oxford Botanical Gardens. The magazine BBC Gardeners’ World is a tie-in to the programme. Most of its episodes have been 30 minutes in length, although there are many specials that last longer. The 2008 and 2009 series used a 60-minute format as did the 2016 series from episode 23.
Monty Don – Gardeners’ World 2021 Winter Specials episode 4
Monty Don was born in West Berlin to British parents Denis Thomas Keiller Don, a career soldier posted in Germany, and Janet Montagu (née Wyatt). Both of his paternal grandparents were Scottish, through whom he is descended from botanist George Don, inventors of a brand of marmalade in 1797. On his maternal side, he is descended from the Wyatts, who were a prominent dynasty of architects. Both parents died in the 1980s. Don has a twin sister, an elder brother David, and two other siblings. His twin suffered a broken neck and blindness after a car crash, at the age of 19. Don describes his parents as being “very strict”.
Don was educated at three independent schools: Quidhampton School in Basingstoke, Hampshire, Bigshotte School in Wokingham, Berkshire, and at Malvern College in Malvern, Worcestershire, a college he hated. He then attended a state comprehensive school, the Vyne School, in Hampshire. He failed his A levels and while studying for re-takes at night school, worked on a building site and a pig farm by day. During his childhood he had become an avid gardener and farmer. He was determined to go to Cambridge out of “sheer bloody-mindedness”, attending Magdalene College, where he read English and met his future wife Sarah. He was a Cambridge Half Blue for boxing.