Rock garden:


‘What do I do with this?’ my friend asked as we stood looking at his rose garden, a miserable, dull collection of stunted bushes, edged by stones. ‘Rip it out!’ I said, ‘and build a rock garden!’   And so we did. We re-laid the stones to create little planting bays, refurbished the soil with […]

Indoor plants: house takeover

by Rhiannon James

What do you get when you let a bunch of stylists take over an empty house armed with an unlimited supply of greenery? Green Open House saw an unsuspecting north London terrace transformed from top to bottom with plants.

Rock garden revival


If macramé hangers and spider plants have made it back into our houses then rock gardens are definitely due a revival outdoors. They look good everywhere from a pot to a sizeable patch; they’re low-maintenance; look great all year round and now, with the arrival of crevice gardens, it’s easy to give them a cool, contemporary look. Stella Rankin, of Kevock Garden Plants, a specialist in rare and unusual alpine plants, explains how to create a garden that rocks.

Piet Oudolf: Hauser & Wirth Somerset

by Abigail Willis

London, New York, Paris and, er, Bruton – it may not quite trip off the tongue yet but the art world’s latest destination, Hauser & Wirth Somerset, has been creating quite a stir since it opened in July.And while there’s plenty to keep art lovers happy here, the gallery’s latest acquisition, a pair of specially commissioned gardens by prairie-planting maestro Piet Oudolf, will be a major draw for those who also have an interest in cutting-edge garden design.

“Love the Plot You’ve Got”

by Drucilla James

Put off by the extravagant designs of garden shows? Never visited your local garden centre? Got a small back yard in town that’s become something of a dumping ground? Aged between 30 and 45 and lacking the inclination, money, knowledge or time to get interested in gardening? Then the gardening industry has you in its sights and is determined to show you that with a little TLC and relatively little cost you can transform your cramped, neglected back lot into a place to be proud of and perhaps become a life-long gardening enthusiast at the same time.

Dig the City

by Drucilla James

Fashionably dressed young women, aged rocker buskers, glitzy buildings and – mangoes, melons and mangetouts growing in the streets – it must be that Dig the City time of year in Manchester again.

RHS Hampton Court Flower Show 2014

by Abigail Willis

If Chelsea is regarded as the haute couture of gardening shows, then Hampton Court is perhaps its more off-the-peg cousin – and that’s no bad thing, because “the people’s flower show” is usually the more useful of the two when it comes to garden ideas that most of us can implement.

Fan the creative flame in your garden

by Alice Wright

As The Garden Museum celebrates the relationship between gardens and literature, we take a look at how gardens can spark the creative flame.

RHS Chelsea Flower Show 2014: the gardens

by Rhiannon James

In a year when Chelsea has seen an unprecedented influx of new, young designers, it’s a bit of a surprise that the Show is so grown-up. There are no twitter-operated panels, no tower blocks of vegetables and there are certainly no flying pods in a daring shade of hot pink. Instead, the gardens are pleasant, polished and restrained. 2014 it seems is the year of the nice young(ish) men.

Small garden design secrets from Joe Swift

by Rhiannon James

While Carol has her cottage garden and Monty has his manor grounds, Joe Swift is a city gardener through and through. His own garden in the east of the capital is a classic London plot with all the essentials: raised beds, built-in seating, and timber deck. His design company specialises in city spaces and given the chance to create a garden at Chelsea in 2012, he went for an “urban oasis feel”. He has written three books on urban gardening and to celebrate the reissue of the second, now called Joe’s Small Garden Handbook, he has shared his top tips on creating a stunning green sanctuary in the city.