Help Mr Fothergill’s fundraise for charity

September 6th, 2017 | News | 0 Comments

At Mr Fothergill’s we like to support as many charities as we can – so far we’ve raised over £150,000. Over the last few years, we’ve supported and fundraised for the Royal Hospital Chelsea Appeal, Greenfingers Charity, and RSPB – among others!

For these charities, in particular, we’ve have been selling sweet peas, seeds or fundraising through events. If you’ve contributed to any of these, then thank you – all of these charities need help and we are grateful to have given them the chance to assist their causes further.

We’ve recently completed a 20 mile walk, that some of our team took part in to raise money for the Greenfingers Charity. You can find out more about our walk here. In addition to this walk, we’ve set up a page for each of the charities that we support – so if you’d like to help with our fundraising efforts, you can find each of the pages below.

 

 

 

If you’re going to donate your hard earned money to a charity, it’s important that you know what your generous donations are going towards. Each of these charities supports very different causes and all of them important.

Greenfingers Charity

Greenfingers Charity is dedicated to supporting the children who use hospices around the UK, along with their families, by creating beautiful, well-designed outdoor spaces for children to enjoy with family, friends and siblings, whether through play and fun, or therapeutic rest and relaxation.  To date, Greenfingers Charity has created 51 inspiring gardens and outdoor spaces in hospices around the country and has a further waiting list of hospices that need our help now.

RSPB

RSPB are the largest nature conservation charity in the country, consistently delivering successful conservation, forging powerful new partnerships with other organisations and inspiring others to stand up and give nature the home it deserves.

Royal Chelsea Appeal Limited

The Chelsea Pensioners are the iconic faces of the UK’s veteran community. They reside at the Royal Hospital Chelsea, their 325-year-old home founded by Charles II, in the heart of London.

Thank you in advance for all the support you’ve given us and these charities over the years, we hope we can continue to help them through the sale of our seeds and fundraising. 

 

 

Pastel poppies

April 20th, 2018 | Plant Talk with Graham Rice | 0 Comments

Poppy 'Falling in Love'

There are two main kinds of annual poppies. There are those derived from our native field or corn poppy, Papaver rhoeas, and those derived from the Asian opium poppy, P. somniferum. This week I’m taking a look at field poppies, next week opium poppies.

Papaver rhoeas is the scarlet annual poppy of our cornfields, although these days we only see it when the plough goes a little deeper and long buried dormant seeds come to the surface.

The first named variety was introduced after the Reverend Wilkes of Shirley in Surrey noticed a wild form with a white edge to the petals. From this plant he developed single- and double-flowered varieties in softer colours and without the black blotch at the base. These are still available as ‘Shirley Single Mixed’.

By the 1960s bright reds had crept back in so the Suffolk painter Cedric Morris developed a strain made up of soft misty and smoky shades, picotees and flowers with delicate veining. From these were developed ‘Dawn Chorus’ and ‘Falling in Love’, blends of doubles in softer shades.

There’s also the original wild corn poppy, ideal for annual meadows, and ‘American Legion’, with a white blotch on each petal.

Sow them all now, either by scattering the seed through your borders (some packets contain 2000 seeds, so you’ll have plenty!) or by sowing in patches or rows. You can also sow in the autumn, the flowers will start to open earlier than those of spring sown plants.

You can even cut them for a vase: dip the cut stems in boiling water for 20 seconds then arrange them in tepid water. They’ll last for ages.

How to plan a low maintenance garden?

April 18th, 2018 | News | 0 Comments

For many of us, a low maintenance garden is a must. But don’t worry, low maintenance doesn’t have to mean bland or a garden completely paved over! Growing a gorgeous garden, which is easy to look after, simply requires a little bit of forward planning.

 

Mr Fothergills gardening advice on how to create a Low Maintenance gardenSimplify your Lawn

Small, awkward shapes of lawn take longer to mown. Simplify things by straightening or smoothing edges. Lawns with hard edges are easier to mow with a wheel mower and leave clippings on the grass. No need to dispose of them and they’ll feed the lawn too.

Even better, is to replace out of the way areas of lawn with beautiful wild flower meadows, which only need trimming occasionally. Opt for a native wild flower mix suitable to your local conditions.

 

Plan an Efficient Garden Layout

Keep the shapes of borders and beds straight or gently curved. Raised beds clearly delineate vegetable and herb drain areas and can help to bring the growing area closer to the gardener so they’re easier to tend. Bring elements of the garden that require more maintenance closer to where you’ll access them, or closer to your tool shed, so you don’t have to carry your equipment to far.

You can also replace narrow winding paths, with wider and straighter paths.

Remember that thirsty plants need regular watering, so grow for example salad leaves closer to a water outlet. If you have little time to water, consider installing an automatic irrigation system. Pots can require a lot of maintenance, so consider grouping containers together, or using fewer larger pots slows the rate to which they dry out while making watering much quicker.

 

Low-Maintenance Crops

If you are looking to save time, then grow bigger vegetables that don’t need regular maintenance. For example, pumpkin and winter squash need little more than occasional watering once they are planted; while a block of corn will outgrow any weeds and can normally be left to its own device until its harvest time.Growing-pumpkins-in-your-easy-maintenance-garden

For easy growing leaves; try chard and perpetual spinach, which will give a steady supply of leaves with little fuss. If picked regularly continuing for anything up to a year.

Soft fruits like currants or autumn fruiting raspberries are a great choice for a low maintenance garden; because once they are, they’ll only need pruning once a year.

Similarly, free standing fruit trees such as apples and pears, need minimal pruning and will give years of service in return.

 

Easy-care Garden Plants

Trees and shrubs tend to be lower maintenance choices in most gardens. Pick one suited to your soil and climate as they are more likely to thrive without any special care. Common easy care shrubs include Euonymus, berberis, magnolia, and hardy herbs such as lavender. Many grasses require cutting back just once a year, for example miscanthus; while ground covering perennials like begonia or geranium will leave little room for weeds.

Don’t forget bulbs too. Many of which will naturalise and pretty much look after themselves.

Keep on top of weeds with thick mulches of organic materials such as bark chippings, which will help to feed the soil and the plants growing in it as they gradually rot down.

 

 

These are just a few tips and ideas to help you create an easy maintenance garden. If you have any additonal tips on how to make life easy in the garden, comment below or head over to our Facebook and Twitter page and tell us what you would recomend.

 

Booting Gardens with Natural Seaweed Goodness

April 16th, 2018 | News | 0 Comments

Seasol Seaweed Concentrate is an all-natural plant tonic for the healthy growth of plants, flowers, vegetables and even lawns. It is derived from a blend of the finest, sustainably harvested kelps from the oceans around Ireland, Norway, Canada and Tasmania.

Seasol contains useful micro-nutrients, is rich in trace elements and has been proven to provide excellent chemical-free plant nourishment.

Mr Fothergill's Seasol Seaweed concentrate plant tonicField observations our trial grounds, support laboratory findings and other growing trials that highlight Seasol’s ability to also improve resistance to insect and fungal attack while reducing the symptoms of stress from excessive heat, frost damage and transplanting.

As well as being applied directly to soils for uptake at the roots, Seasol can also be applied as a foliar spray for fast absorption of nutrients. Spent spring bulbs may also benefit from a feed of Seasol, to encourage strong flower growth the following year.

Seasol can be applied at any time of year on all garden plants and is available now in selected garden retailers and online at www.mr-fothergills.co.uk, with a RRP of £7.99.

 

Here are ten reasons to try Seasol:Mr Fothergill's Seasol Seaweed concentrate plant tonic

  • Increased number of flowers per plant
  • Increased yield on fruit and vegetable plants
  • Stimulation of root system for improved mass
  • Extended cropping and flowering times
  • Increased nutrient uptake
  • Increased resistance to insect attack
  • Increased resistance to fungal problems
  • Increased tolerance to hot and cold extremes
  • Reduced transplant shock
  • Increased drought tolerance

Gentler geums

April 13th, 2018 | Plant Talk with Graham Rice | 0 Comments

Geum 'Totally Tangerine'

There are two geums that we seem to have been growing for ever: ‘Mrs J. Bradshaw’ (bright scarlet) and ‘Lady Stratheden’ (bright yellow). They’re prolific, tough as old boots and flower for months in most soils. But don’t you sometimes wish that there were varieties that were just as long flowering and prolific but that were, well, less bright?

Plant breeders around the world have got the message and have been crossing different species together to create varieties that are prolific, adaptable, long flowering and colourful – but in slightly softer shades.

From Holland comes ‘Flames of Passion’, developed by the renowned plantsman and garden designer Piet Oudolf, is red, but a richer and softer shade than ‘Mrs J. Bradshaw’. ‘Mai Tai’, created by Illinois nurseryman Brent Horvath, is apricot with richer pink tints while, from British nurseryman Tim Crowther, ‘Totally Tangerine’ (above) is peachy pink with a rich dusting of gold that adds subtlety to its brightness.

All are sun lovers, all are tolerant of a wide variety of soils but are best in fertile conditions with good drainage, especially in winter. If you’re looking for a geum for wetter conditions, try the demure British native Geum rivale.

Regular dead-heading helps prolong their season and keeps the plants looking fresh and if you’d like to cut some for the house, they’ll last well. I recommend them.

Come to the RHS Wisley Spring Craft Fair

April 10th, 2018 | News | 0 Comments

Spring-Carft-Fair-RHS-Wisley-May-2018Browse and buy from a wide range of exhibitors in the beautiful surroundings of RHS Garden Wisley.

Enjoy the relaxed atmosphere and discover the breathtaking creativity from a range of both emerging British talent as well as more established designer makers.

The fair will take place from the 3rd-7th May. Event times are as follows:

3–6 May: 9am-6pm
7 May: 9am-5pm

Mr Fothergill’s is proud to have entered into a new partnership with The RHS to bring out a range of flower seeds and vegetable seeds for home gardeners.  The extensive flower seed range creates beautiful garden displays with excellent performance. Additionally they have been awarded RHS’s perfect for pollinators, as the best source of food for pollinating insects.  The vegetable collection, of 56 AGM varieties, includes excellent modern strains as well as much-loved, trusted favourites.

The RHS Award of Garden Merit is a mark of quality, awarded to garden plants with excellent garden performance. Each award is given only after a trial at an RHS Garden and judge by a team of experts.

Royal Horticultural Society

To browse all the RHS events follow this link to the website.

Take a look at the RHS Range of flower seeds and vegetable seeds on the Mr Fothergill’s website.