The Beechgrove Garden 2021 episode 5: Carole and Mairi set about fixing, feeding and repairing the Beechgrove lawns, while Kirsty creates a new living lawn.
Meanwhile, Brian is in his family garden at Old Scone and encouraging us not to mow, or if we do mow, to use a hand-push mower. And Chris Beardshaw provides an update on the projects that he started in his home garden last year, including his attempt to cure the dreaded box blight.
The Beechgrove Garden 2021 episode 5
Beardshaw was formally trained in Horticulture at Pershore College and holds an BA Hons and PGDip in Landscape Architecture from the University of Gloucestershire. He has won 35 prestigious design awards, including 12 RHS Gold Medals, the latest was for his Morgan Stanley Garden for the NSPCC at RHS Chelsea Flower Show in 2018 which also was awarded the coveted Best Show Garden Award. He has also been voted for the People’s Choice Award 5 times.
His first TV appearance was in 1999 as the expert on ‘Surprise Gardeners’ for Carlton TV. After this, he moved to the BBC TV and Real Rakeovers as the expert contributor. His first show as solo presenter was Weekend Gardener for UKTV Style in 2000. Also in 2000, he co-presented Gardening Neighbours for BBC 2. This was followed by three series of Housecall. After this, he joined Gardeners’ World Live as a specialist presenter, and then soon moved on to become a presenter on Gardeners’ World, alongside Monty Don and Rachel De Thame. Beardshaw was perhaps best known for his The Flying Gardener series for BBC2 which ran for four series. He currently presents Beechgrove Garden and is a regular panel member on BBC Radio 4’s Gardeners’ Question Time.
The Chris Beardshaw Rose was launched at the Hampton Court Flower show in July 2007. Beautifully scented with soft pink blooms, the new rose was produced by international rose specialist C&K Jones. Chris Beardshaw specifically asked for a donation (£2.50) to be made to the Royal Lifeboat Institution (RNLI) for every rose sold.
Box blight is a fungal disease of box resulting in bare patches and die-back, especially in topiary and parterres. Box blight is a disease of box leaves and stems caused by the fungus Cylindrocladium buxicola (syn. Calonectria pseudonaviculata). Box blight doesn’t kill the roots of box plants. Cylindrocladium buxicola is divided into two genetic types which differ in their sensitivity to some fungicides (triazoles). It largely affects Buxus spp. (box) in the UK, but other plants in the Buxaceae family are also susceptible.
Hold any commercially sourced plants in isolation for at least four weeks to confirm they are free of infection before planting out. Commercial nurseries may use fungicides which suppress but do not kill the fungus, and this isolation technique will allow time for suppressed disease to become visible. Taking cuttings from healthy box in your garden will reduce the risk of introducing the disease.
Inspect plants for early symptoms as box blight spreads very rapidly in warm and humid conditions and is difficult to manage.
Reduce the frequency of clipping to create more ventilation throughout the plants (regular pruning creates dense foliage and less air movement). Prune a hedge with a convex top rather than flat and prune only in dry conditions. Clean pruning tools with a garden disinfectant or mild bleach solution between different areas of the garden and between gardens to minimise unwitting spread of the disease.
Avoid overhead watering as box blight thrives in humid conditions. Use mulch under plants to reduce rain splash. Feed plants moderately.