Brian Kidd, retired Parks Officer for Portsmouth City Council, will be giving weekly gardening advice and answering gardeners emails. Email your gardening questions to



Good quality prepared hyacinth bulbs have arrived at Keydell Nurseries, these can be brought into flower for Christmas if you follow the advice you will read in The News in early Septembers gardening feature. Make a start, buy some clay bulb pots about 5 to 6 inches across, they are deeper than bulb bowls and your hyacinths won’t keep falling out of the containers. These wonderful clay pots are in stock at Keydell. A lot of professional gardeners call them half pots.


Now that the weather has changed, mow the lawn in a different direction the next time it needs a cut. This reduces weeds because a lot of them lay flat on the surface when the lawn is always cut in the same direction.

There is still time to move nerines bulbs. When replanting they are best grown in groups with only half an inch of space between individual bulbs. They can also be divided and planted in tight groups and this will ensure they still flower this autumn. Leave about a third of the depth of the bulb out of the soil in a sunny place.

Buy a pack of Anemone De Caen, plant 5 corms around the edge of a flower pot 5 inches in diameter in John Innes number 2 compost. Once the pot is filled with roots without disturbing the root ball, plant them where you want to enjoy the flowers and you will always be successful in growing anemones. There are still some in colour packs at Keydell, hurry up before they are all gone!

If you enjoy garlic from Keydell, these bulbs grow well on the Southern mainland and can be planted during the end of September for early cropping next year.

Did you remember to sow seeds of spring hearting cabbage? If not, do it now. I did say I would remind you! You will find the seeds just inside the entrance at Keydell.

As the day length becomes shorter, the weeds grow faster - a fact. Try to hand weed before the weeds flower, this breaks into the weeds life cycle and the weeds can be added to the compost bin. Have a look at the stainless steel hoes at Keydell. they make the job of hoeing less daunting.

Flowers in tubs and containers are looking over their best in many gardens. Don’t give up, trim back the tips of the plants, remove all dead flowers and water them with half strength Maxicrop growth Stimulant every other day for a week and in a fortnights time, the plants will look refreshed again. All types of Maxicrop are always in stock at Keydell and remember they are organic, no chemicals in this liquid quick acting fertilser.

After all that, have a rest in the shade. Have a look at the garden furniture at Keydell, this is currently on special offer.