In The Genus Garden

Broad beans

With a week of high pressure giving us glorious sunny days we decided to get into the vegetable garden and sow some broad beans.  Very hardy, and very tasty, broad beans can be sown in some of the harshest conditions...

Read More

Your March gardening to-do list

It’s March tomorrow and it's getting busy out there in the garden. As you can see, Joff has been pruning the roses in the Genus garden.  Here are our top 10 jobs for you to do now.
  1. By...
Read More

After the freeze

The milder weather we’ve been having over the last few days has enabled us to get on with the work that was postponed by the previous week's deep freeze.  With a bucket, a long handled brush, and a squirt...

Read More

Deep freeze

What a week!  Freezing cold temperatures, ground frozen, and scatterings of snow.  Plans that were previously made to sow seeds suddenly seemed laughable and a quick mental pivot was required if we were going to spend any quality time in...

Read More

Mulching mad

Mulching.  We’re at it again! It was only just before Christmas that we were talking about spreading compost on the flower borders.  It’s something we’re passionate about.  A decade of this annual process has given us beautiful soil with  a...

Read More

Lockdown hair

When we first moved into the cottage at Genus HQ it had a functional but extremely ugly concrete garage.  It’s the first thing we see on our return home and after much thought we decided to grow ivy over the...

Read More

Looking to the future

Gardeners are an optimistic bunch, never put off by failures, always trying again, and always looking to the future.  Small but barely noticeable signs at Genus HQ have made us aware that despite current restrictions mother nature is still forging...

Read More

Galanthomania

As you read this, galanthomania is sweeping the country and keen snowdrop fans, or galanthophiles, are dropping to their knees to inspect the delicate petals of some of the rarer forms of snowdrop.  Well, they would be if coronavirus...

Read More

Thinking of summer

Every six months we renovate our mulched tree circles in the orchard at Genus HQ.  Weeds are removed, the edges clipped with our trusty French Bahco shears, and a top dressing of our homemade compost is applied as a weed...

Read More

Barking mad

Winter gardens concentrate the mind.  It’s the detail that counts.  Whether peering at the delicate formation of a snowdrops perianth, the frosted hairs on brittle seed heads, or the last few remaining translucent berries on the viburnum it’s a...

Read More

Driving rain for Christmas

Stepping out the back door of Genus HQ last week we were slapped in the face by wind and cold driving rain.  As devotees of performance gardenwear we weren’t going to let this rob us of a productive day in the garden...

Read More

Currant affairs

A day in the fruit cage beckoned this week.  The blackcurrants  have responded well to a complete cut back and renovation that we gave them in late 2019.  A wealth of sturdy fresh stems have been thrown giving us a...

Read More

Christmas gifts for gardeners past and present

It’s that time of year again and the search for Christmas gifts at full throttle.  Gardeners past enjoyed a now familiar set of innovative products bought as special gifts.  During the early 1830’s the first self powered cylinder lawnmower was...

Read More

Mulching à la Verey

With the Genus borders planted up with tulips and wallflowers we were finally able to get on with mulching. This has been an annual operation  since we moved...

Read More

The first real frost

We had our first real frost last week.  Not a surprise for late November but still a bit of a shock.  It turned out to be a day of bits and pieces.  The border that extends around from the...

Read More

Black in the Garden - Pelargonium sidoides

The first thing you learn when using ‘black’ plants in the garden is that they’re rarely black; dark reds, purples, and sometimes dark blues are usually the norm.  Despite this, plants like Pelagonium sidoides do look virtually black in a...
Read More

Black in the Garden - Blackfly

‘Hands up who likes blackfly’?  No, we don’t either.  They often appear suddenly in the garden and can cause several problems that need to be dealt with.

The bean aphid Aphis fabae is probably the one most commonly seen in gardens...
Read More

Black in the Garden - Aeonium 'Zwartop'

We love Aeonium ‘Zwartcop’.  It’s a tender branching succulent that can grow up to 1.2 metres high and is a perfect specimen to have as an architectural centrepiece in pots or troughs.  Lucky inhabitants of Cornwall or The Isles of...
Read More

Wallflowers for spring

Good weather last week enabled us to get several hundred tulips planted in the borders at Genus HQ.  This week we overplanted the tulips with the wallflowers that were sown back in August.

Red-hot ‘Fire King’ is a...

Read More

Inspired by grasses

Ornamental grasses are extremely popular with gardeners in the UK.  With their height, movement, and colour they easily earn their place in any garden.  Last week could well have been called  ‘National Grass week’; social media was awash with stunning...

Read More

Renewals and repairs

Some days at Genus HQ have to be more about the infrastructure than the plants, so this week we put aside a day to complete a few practical tasks that required attention.  Our vegetable garden is made up of...

Read More