The Beechgrove Garden episode 25 2020: Gardening magazine, George is on his allotment celebrating the humble apple and we are treated to a tour of spectacular autumn colour in Branklyn Gardens, Perth, by head gardener Alistair Chalmers.
Meanhwhile, Carole revisits a native hedgerow that she helped plant 17 years ago to see it in all its berry bird-feeding glory. In contrast, Kirsty creates an easy-to-replicate trendy ‘desertscape’ with cacti in her Edinburgh flat.
Beechgrove is a hardy annual TV gardening series which sets out to deal with, glory in and celebrate Scottish horticulture and growing conditions. Beechgrove is and always has been a firmly practical, get-your-hands-dirty gardening programme which delights in success but also learns from failures in the garden and never takes itself too seriously.
The Beechgrove Garden episode 25 2020
Branklyn Garden is a small but magnificent garden with an impressive collection of rare and unusual plants. Among the most breathtaking is the Himalayan blue poppy, Meconopsis x sheldonii. There is a rock garden with purple maple and the rare golden Cedrus. Seasonal highlights in May and June are the alpines and rhododendrons and in Autumn the fiery red Acer palmatum. This garden is lovely in Spring and also has great Autumn colours and is really worth visiting.
Apples in Beechgrove Garden episode 25 2020
Apples are easy to grow, productive and there are varieties and growth forms for every garden. You can even grow them in containers. They should be valued as a long term investment as they take a few years to crop, but once they start, they will do so for many years.
Apples thrive in a well-drained loam, at least 60cm (2ft) deep. Add well rotted organic matter before planting and mulch and water well through the growing season until the tree is growing well. Shallow soils over chalk are unsuitable for growing all but a very few apples. Dessert apples need good drainage, but culinary apples are more tolerant.
Apples prefer a sheltered, frost-free position in full sun. You can still grow apples in frost prone areas, just choose later-flowering varieties or provide temporary protection in spring when apples are in blossom. Provide artificial or living windbreaks on exposed sites. Apples tolerate shade providing they receive half a day’s sunshine in the growing season. Culinary varieties need less sunshine than dessert varieties.
Hedge plants are cheap, easy to plant and form an attractive boundary more quickly than many gardeners imagine. As well as providing structure to the garden, they can be perfect for wildlife, and particularly nesting birds. Most trees and shrubs have potential to make hedges. More information on suitable species can be found on our selecting plants for hedging page.
Hedging plants are often supplied as bare-root specimens, which are usually inexpensive. However, pot-grown plants are equally suitable but cost a little more. Evergreens, especially, are often sold as root-wrapped, where the roots are in a soil ball contained by a fabric casing. This wrapping must be removed, if it is of synthetic fibre, but natural fibre wrappings are sometimes left on. Removal of wrapping is still recommended, though.
Small hedge plants are often called whips and are about 60cm (2ft) high. They are very cheap and are easy to establish. Larger plants need more care and are more expensive. It is best to plant whips closely as they not only form a thick hedge, but compete with each other and so reduce the amount of trimming required.