Brian Kidd's (retired Parks Officer for Portsmouth City Council)

weekly gardening advice.



If you have seedlings of forget-me -not plants invading the garden, dig them all out and put them all together in one border planted 5 inches apart. As you have now saved some money, treat yourself to some pink tulips and plant these in between the forget-me-nots. You will see a tasteful display next spring.


Don’t let the lawn be spoiled due to early leaf fall. The best way to pick up a light covering of leaves is to mow the grass and the leafy bits assist the grass to compost.

With a bit of luck, this is the last time we shall have to cut hedges, so let’s get it done and out of the lists of tasks.

If you have an allotment, try to get some digging done, remove weeds and leave the soil in clods to weather. Incorporate manure for potatoes, peas and beans.

Buy alpine plants for a cold empty greenhouse, they won’t mind a few side glass panes missing and what a good way to enjoy the greenhouse in winter but better still in spring when they all flower.

Have you struggled all summer with a bad mowing machine? It won’t be long before the DIY shops will have special clearance offers. You can’t take your money with you, spend it and enjoy it.

Plant out Brompton stocks about 8 inches apart, these bloom in between spring and early summer when there is very little else in flower and they are perfumed too.

Plant a camellia, these accommodating plants start to flower in late winter. Choose one with plump terminal buds, these are the flower buds. Plant somewhere so that the morning sun won’t damage the blooms in frosty weather. A good container plant too, use an ericaceous mix.

Plant tubers of the autumn flowering cyclamen, Cyclamen hederaefolium. These are often seen “loose” in boxes at garden centres. They enjoy light shade, simply plant the tuber half it’s depth in moistened soil.