Gardeners World episode 10 2017

Gardeners World episode 10 2017

There is work to be done in Gardeners World episode 10 2017,  around and in the pond this week and Monty Don also begins planting out his dahlias. Adding zing to the month of May is the euphorbia and Carol Klein visits Oxford Botanic garden to view their extensive collection.

Gardeners World episode 10 2017

Mark Lane is in Hackney finding out how a car breaker’s yard at the side of a Tudor National Trust property has been transformed into an award-winning garden used by the local community, while Adam Frost explains how to plant for structure in his herbaceous border.

Gardeners World episode 10 2017

Rachel de Thame visits a garden which has opened to the public every year for 90 years for charity as part of the National Gardens Scheme, while Nick Bailey is in Devon where he discovers how a pond plant has now escaped into the countryside and is invading waterways. And we reveal the final candidate for our Golden Jubilee plant and open the vote.

In Gardeners World episode 10 2017:

How to Grow Eremurus: The Ultimate Guide to Foxtail Lilies

Eremurus or foxtail lilies are tall, stately perennials with fleshy, starfish like roots that will add height and interest to herbaceous borders. If you are looking for a stunning perennial that will add height, color, and drama to your garden, look no further than Eremurus. Also known as foxtail lilies or desert candles, these plants produce impressive flower spikes that can reach up to 10 feet tall and are covered with hundreds of tiny star-shaped blossoms in shades of white, yellow, orange, pink, or coral.

Eremurus are native to the dry regions of eastern Europe and central Asia, where they grow in well-drained soil and full sun. They are hardy in USDA zones 5-7, but they need some protection from frost and wind. They also have a unique root system that resembles a starfish, which makes them sensitive to disturbance and competition from other plants.

Eremurus, also known as foxtail lilies or desert candles, are stunning perennials that produce tall spikes of star-shaped flowers in early to midsummer. They are native to eastern Europe and temperate Asia, where they grow in dry grasslands and semi-desert habitats. They can add height, drama, and color to any garden, but they are not easy to grow. Foxtail Lilies have specific requirements for soil, water, and sun, and they do not like to be disturbed or crowded by other plants. In this article, we will show you how to grow eremurus successfully, from planting to harvesting and storing the roots.

Planting Eremurus

Eremurus are grown from fleshy roots that look like starfish. They are available as bare root crowns in early spring or summer, or as potted plants in spring. The best time to plant them is in spring or late summer to early autumn, when the soil is warm and moist.

The most important thing to consider when planting eremurus is drainage. They need free-draining soil that does not get waterlogged or frozen in winter. If your soil is heavy or clayey, you will need to amend it with organic matter such as compost or manure, and add coarse grit or sharp sand to improve drainage. You can also raise the soil level of the bed where you intend to plant them, or plant them on a slope or a mound.

Choose a sunny spot for your eremurus, as they need at least six hours of direct sun per day. Avoid frost pockets or windy sites, as the young foliage and the flower spikes are prone to damage from cold and wind.

To plant bare root crowns, dig a shallow hole about 6-8 inches deep and wider than the roots. Place the crown on a mound of soil or grit in the center of the hole, so that the growing point is just below the soil surface. Spread the roots evenly around the mound, and fill the hole with soil. Firm gently and water well.

To plant potted plants, dig a hole slightly larger than the pot size and deep enough so that the top of the root ball is level with the soil surface. Remove the plant from the pot and place it in the hole. Fill the hole with soil and water well.

Space your eremurus plants according to their size and vigor. Smaller varieties can be spaced 1-2 feet apart, while larger ones need 3-4 feet of space between them. Mark the position of your plants with a stake or a label, so that you do not damage them when they are dormant.

Caring for Eremurus

Eremurus are not very demanding once they are established, but they do need some care and attention throughout the year.


Eremurus do not like wet feet, but they also do not like to dry out completely. They need regular watering during their active growth period, from spring to summer. Water them deeply once a week, or more often if the weather is hot and dry. Do not water them from above, as this can cause fungal diseases on the leaves and flowers. Instead, water them at the base of the plant or use a drip irrigation system.

Reduce watering in late summer and autumn, as the plants prepare for dormancy. Stop watering completely in winter, when the plants are dormant.


Eremurus benefit from feeding with a high-potassium fertilizer such as sulphate of potash in spring, when they start growing new leaves. This will help them produce strong stems and abundant flowers. You can also apply a balanced liquid fertilizer once a month in late spring and summer, especially if your soil is poor or sandy.

Do not overfeed your eremurus, as this can cause weak growth and floppy stems. Avoid high-nitrogen fertilizers, as they can encourage leafy growth at the expense of flowers.


Eremurus appreciate a layer of organic mulch around their base, such as compost, bark chips, straw, or leaf mold. This will help retain moisture in the soil, suppress weeds, and protect the roots from frost in winter.

Apply mulch in spring after planting or when new growth appears. Do not cover the crown of the plant with mulch, as this can cause rotting or suffocation.


One of the challenges of growing eremurus is that they have long and brittle flower stems that can easily snap in strong winds or heavy rain. To prevent this, it is advisable to stake the plants as soon as they emerge from the ground in spring. Staking will also help the plants look more upright and elegant, and prevent them from flopping over.

There are different ways to stake eremurus, depending on the size and number of plants you have. Here are some options:

– Use bamboo canes or metal stakes that are at least as tall as the expected height of the plants. Insert them into the ground about 6 inches away from the base of the plant, and tie the stem loosely to the stake with soft twine or garden tape. You may need to adjust the ties as the plant grows taller.
– Use a circular wire support that fits around the base of the plant. The wire should have vertical legs that can be pushed into the soil, and horizontal rings that can support the stem at different heights. You can buy ready-made wire supports or make your own with wire mesh or coat hangers.
– Use a tripod or teepee made of three bamboo canes or metal stakes that are tied together at the top. Place the tripod over the plant and secure it to the ground with stakes or pins. The stem can then lean against one of the legs or be tied to it loosely.
– Use a peony ring or grid that has a circular frame with vertical legs and horizontal wires. The frame should be large enough to fit over the plant and support the stem at various points. You can place the ring over the plant when it is still small and let it grow through it, or lift it over the plant when it is taller and secure it to the ground.

Whichever method you choose, make sure you stake your eremurus early in the season, before they get too tall and heavy. Also, be careful not to damage the roots or crown of the plant when inserting stakes or supports into the soil. Eremurus have fleshy roots that look like starfish, and they are very sensitive to disturbance.

Staking your eremurus will not only protect them from wind and rain damage, but also enhance their beauty and grace. You will be rewarded with spectacular blooms that will light up your garden for weeks.

Grow your own french beans – Gardeners World episode 10 2017

French beans are delicious and easy to grow in small gardens. They make great finger food for children, and are ideal for anyone who doesn’t like the ‘stringy’ bits in runner beans! A few plants will reward you with a reliable crop and they come in a variety of colours – as well as the usual green beans, there are cream, yellow, and purple French beans that all look as good as they taste.

Growing your own french beans is a rewarding and easy way to enjoy fresh vegetables from your garden. French beans are also known as green beans, snap beans or haricot verts, and they come in different varieties such as bush, pole or runner beans. Here are some tips on how to grow your own french beans successfully.

  • Choose the right variety for your climate and space. Bush beans are compact and do not need support, but they produce fewer beans than pole or runner beans, which need a trellis or stake to climb on. Pole and runner beans also have a longer harvesting season than bush beans. If you live in a cool or short-season area, choose a variety that matures quickly, such as ‘Contender’, ‘Provider’ or ‘Tendergreen’. If you live in a warm or long-season area, choose a variety that is heat-tolerant and resistant to diseases, such as ‘Blue Lake’, ‘Kentucky Wonder’ or ‘Rattlesnake’.
  • Prepare the soil and sow the seeds. French beans prefer well-drained, fertile and slightly acidic soil with a pH of 6.0 to 6.5. You can improve the soil by adding compost or manure before planting. Sow the seeds directly in the ground after the last frost date, when the soil temperature is at least 15°C (60°F). Plant the seeds 2.5 cm (1 inch) deep and 10 cm (4 inches) apart in rows that are 45 to 60 cm (18 to 24 inches) apart. If you are growing pole or runner beans, place the trellis or stake near the row before planting.
  • Water and weed regularly. French beans need consistent moisture to germinate and grow well, especially during flowering and pod formation. Water them deeply once or twice a week, depending on the weather and soil conditions. Avoid wetting the leaves and pods to prevent fungal diseases. Mulch the soil around the plants with straw, grass clippings or leaves to conserve moisture and suppress weeds. Weed carefully by hand or with a hoe, as french beans have shallow roots that can be easily damaged.
  • Harvest and enjoy your french beans. You can start harvesting your french beans when they are young and tender, usually 50 to 60 days after planting for bush beans and 60 to 70 days for pole or runner beans. Pick them regularly to encourage more production and prevent them from becoming tough and stringy. You can eat them fresh, cooked, frozen or canned. French beans are rich in fiber, vitamin C, vitamin K and folate, and they also contain some protein, iron and calcium.

How to take cuttings: softwood

Softwood cuttings are one of the easiest and most rewarding ways to propagate plants. They are taken from the young, tender shoots of herbaceous plants or woody shrubs in spring or early summer, when they are still flexible and not yet woody. Softwood cuttings can root quickly and produce new plants that are identical to the parent plant.

To take softwood cuttings, you will need:

– A healthy, vigorous plant to take cuttings from
– A sharp knife or pruning shears
– A clean pot or tray filled with moist potting mix or perlite
– A plastic bag or dome to cover the cuttings
– A rooting hormone (optional)

Follow these steps to take softwood cuttings:

1. Choose a healthy, disease-free stem that has at least three sets of leaves. Avoid stems that have flowers or buds, as they will divert energy from rooting.
2. Cut off the stem just below a leaf node (where a leaf joins the stem) using a sharp knife or pruning shears. Make a clean, straight cut to avoid damaging the stem.
3. Remove the lower leaves from the stem, leaving only one or two sets of leaves at the top. You can also cut the remaining leaves in half to reduce water loss through transpiration.
4. Dip the cut end of the stem in water and then in rooting hormone (if using). This will help stimulate root formation and prevent fungal infection.
5. Make a hole in the potting mix or perlite with your finger or a pencil and insert the stem into it. Gently firm the soil around the stem to support it.
6. Repeat steps 2 to 5 for as many cuttings as you want to take. Space them evenly in the pot or tray, leaving enough room for air circulation.
7. Cover the pot or tray with a plastic bag or dome to create a humid environment for the cuttings. Make sure the bag or dome does not touch the leaves, as this can cause rotting.
8. Place the pot or tray in a bright location, but out of direct sunlight, which can scorch the cuttings. Keep the soil moist but not soggy, and mist the cuttings regularly to prevent them from drying out.
9. Check for roots after four to six weeks by gently tugging on the stem. If you feel resistance, it means roots have formed. If not, leave them for another week or two and check again.
10. Once roots have developed, remove the plastic bag or dome and gradually acclimate the cuttings to normal conditions. Transplant them into individual pots when they are well rooted and growing strongly.

Congratulations! You have successfully propagated new plants from softwood cuttings. Enjoy your new plants or share them with your friends and family.

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