The Beechgrove Garden 2021 episode 2: It’s time to get sowing on Beechgrove. Kirsty joins Carole and Mairi in the garden as they continue to get growing, while George and Brian have easy-to-grow veg on the mind, and Sophie has stepped up to a brand new gardening challenge.
In this episode, Carole and Mairi create a bargain border from scratch, Kirsty creates a recycled birdhouse with its own living roof, Brian and family create some family-friendly, no-dig veg plots in the lawn, and George sows micro-veg, heralding the return of the hanging gardens of Joppa. And familiar face Sophie joins us from her new gardening job at Culzean Castle.
The Beechgrove Garden 2021 episode 2
Flowering Cornus (dogwood) trees are grown for their showy coloured bracts in late spring and early summer. Shrubby Cornus alba, C. sericea and C. sanguinea are grown for their vivid winter stem colour, while shrubby C.mas (the cornelian cherry) is grown for its winter flowers and summer fruits. This varied group of plants give great garden value.
C. controversa and C. alternifolia need little pruning, developing their tiered shape naturally with time. Limit pruning to removal of lower branches as the tree grows in height, to create a clear trunk. There should be one topmost leading branch, and any side branches that compete with it should also be removed. Pruning, if needed, is best carried out between autumn and early spring, while the tree is dormant and leafless. Hard pruning is not tolerated and will spoil the shape of the tree.
C. kousa, C. florida and C. nutallii need very little pruning beyond the removal of lower branches as the tree matures to create a clear trunk. This is best done while the tree is dormant and leafless, between autumn and early spring. Dead wood may accumulate in the canopy, and can be removed after flowering. Hard pruning is not tolerated and may spoil the shape of the tree or result in dieback.
C. mas and C. officinalis can be thinned out in early summer, removing selected branches to display the flowers better on those remaining, and to allow light and air into the centre of the shrub. Overgrown specimens can be renovated by cutting back side branches to within two buds of the main framework branches.
Dividing perennials regularly will ensure healthy, vigorous plants that will continue to perform year after year. It also offers the opportunity to multiply your plants. Most perennials benefit from division every two to three years to maintain health and vigour. If you want to increase the number of plants you have by dividing them, the task can be done more regularly.
These are just a few examples of plants that can be divided: Agapanthus, Anemone, Aster, Bergenia (elephant’s ears), Convallaria (lily-of-the-valley) Crocosmia, Dierama, Delphinium, Epimedium, Eryngium (sea holly), Euphorbia, Gentiana (gentian) Geranium, Helianthus, Hemerocallis (daylily), Hosta, Iris, Lychnis, Lysichiton, Lysimachia, ornamental grasses, Primula (primrose) Ranunculus (buttercup), Salvia, Sedum, Verbena, Zantedeschia (arum lily).
Plants can be divided successfully at almost any time if they are kept well-watered afterwards. However, division is most successful when the plants are not in active growth.