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Kew Gardens to make 125 staff redundant

Link to Kew Gardens to make 125 staff redundant

Kew Gardens is to axe 125 of its 750 staff – to cut costs.
The royal botanic garden is facing a shortfall of £5million with bosses blaming financial woes on the “economic situation” in recent years. 
Despite the crisis, Kew was a star performer in 2013, attracting 1,324,499 visitors. That’s a rise of 29.4 per cent on 2012 (AG, 22 March).
A spokesman for…

Help for Heroes garden to honour war heroes

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A garden is to be built in honour of forces’ charity Help for Heroes at the RHS Chelsea Flower Show in May. 
The plot, designed by 29 year-old Matthew Keightley, will mark sacrifices made by British troops who are being withdrawn from Afghanistan this year. Many have suffered horrific injuries and long-term mental health problems.
It will be based on the shape…

Product test – gardening boots

Link to Product test – gardening boots

BEST BUY 14/15
FURY SUPER SAFETY HIKER BOOT
£30 + £4.95 p&p
Williamson-Dickie Europe
Tel. 01773 514748
www.dickiesstore.co.uk
Features 5
Leather hiker-style boot with anti-static and shock absorbing properties and dual density polyurethane sole, resistant to petrol and oil. Incorporates a cambrelle lining to absorb perspiration and keep feet fresh. Three pairs of rings and two hooks ensure quick access and lacing. Short loop pull at the…

In the 29 March issue of Amateur Gardening…

Link to In the 29 March issue of Amateur Gardening…

Summer flower bulbs – follow our easy guide to planting
Grow Your Own – we make it simple with a special eight-page guide on container crops
Garden gift ideas – perfect for Mother’s Day
Peter Seabrook – how to keep lawns green
Christine Walkden – advice on sowing peas
Anne Swithinbank – pruning a fig tree
Bob Flowerdew – learn to live with wasps
Toby Buckland…

Alan Titchmarsh launches gardening range at Waitrose

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Top telly gardener Alan Titchmarsh has teamed up with Waitrose to bring out a new range of gardening products this spring. 
Former Ground Force host Alan, who last year was announced as an ambassador for the upmarket supermarket chain, will help the retailer to boost its gardening offer.
The first products to go into stores this month include grow-your-own lines such as seed…

Prince Charles to open organic gardens at Highgrove

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Gardeners are set to have a right royal nosey around the Prince of Wales’s patch.
Prince Charles’s organic gardens at Highgrove, in Gloucerstershire, will host a ticket-only spring tour on Wednesday 23 April in aid of charity Hospitality Action.
A spokesman for the event said: “Despite the wet winter, spring is finally showing through. The structure and form of the garden is…

Budget border

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Got a new border to plant but need to keep your costs down? Be inspired by this bargain blend of fast-growers created by
Helen Derrin from online plant nursery www.crocus.co.uk 
 
1 Ceanothus thyrsiflorus
2 Choisya ternata
3 Verbena bonariensis
4 Geranium x magnificum
5 Campanula portenschlagiana
6 Aster x frikartii ‘Monch’
7 Alchemilla mollis
8 Centaurea cyanus
9 Erigeron karvinskianus
10 Japanese anemone
 
For more ready-made border ideas from Helen, go to www.crocus.co.uk/ready-made-borders/

 
 
**EXCLUSIVE OFFER**
AG…

Product test – budget spades and forks

Link to Product test – budget spades and forks

Best buy: 20/20
£13 each
Wilko stainless-steel border range
Wilkinson stores
Tel. 08456 080807
www.wilko.com
BUILD  5
Quality stainless steel heads with well-finished high-grade ash hardwood shaft and handle. Spade: total height 37in (94cm) with 51/2in (14cm) wide blade. Fork: total height 38in (96cm) with 51/2in (14cm) wide head.
FEATURES 5
Traditional-looking tools with wishbone handles and boot treads on the shoulders of the spade. Two rivets secure the…

Product profile – teapot bird feeder

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Here’s a little tea-time treat that’ll have your feathered friends tweeting for joy. Produced by family tea merchants Ringtons this classic shaped ceramic teapot is really a birdfeeder that can be hung securely from any tree, post or balcony thanks to its strong zinc coated steel suspension cable. Each one carries the 107 year company’s RT crest and comes with…

Growing for showing is back in fashion, claims seed company

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Gardeners who like to grow for show have prompted a seed firm to launch a range of exhibition veg. 
Mr Fothergill’s has pooled 16 tried-and-tested varieties for exhibition growing, some of which are new to company, into one specialist line-up.
“Growing for showing is increasingly popular, often with gardeners who want to enter the spirit of their local show and compete for…

Garden centres stocking up for a record Easter

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Garden product makers are getting ready for a record Easter – as gardeners rush to fix plots that have been battered by a winter of storms.
Garden centres are expecting one of their busiest springs, as households get rain-lashed gardens into shape.
A spokesman for Scotts Miracle-Gro said winter flooding could lead to root death, phytophthora, dead lawns and waterlogged containers: “There…

Top Tips from Amateur Gardening 1 March – on sale now

Link to Top Tips from Amateur Gardening 1 March – on sale now

Want to make a few bob, selling your surplus plants at car boot sales? We set out our selling tips, as well as what you can and can’t sell
Anne Swithinbank shows how to protect early planted potatoes from late frosts, while Bob Flowerdew sets out his favorite types by culinary use.
 
Sowing a new lawn this spring? AG consumer editor, Julia…

Product profile – Garden MultiTool

Link to Product profile – Garden MultiTool

Here’s a great idea as a present for a gardening friend.  The Garden MultiTool is one of a range of four pocket-sized tools launched by Wilkinson Sword. 
Despite being just 4in (10cm long) it has 14 other devices tucked away in the handles, making it ideal for spur of the moment DIY and repair jobs around the garden. Amongst them is…

Hosta to be named after Wimbledon champion Andy Murray

Link to Hosta to be named after Wimbledon champion Andy Murray

A new hosta is to be served up for Wimbledon champion Andy Murray.
Hosta ‘Andy Murray’ will make its debut at the RHS Chelsea Flower Show in May – and tennis ace Andy and his family may be at the launch.
Vice-president of the British Hosta and Hemerocallis Society, Diana Grenfell, told AG the hosta’s leaves represent the colours of the Scottish…

Pub drinkers compete to grow the longest bean

Link to Pub drinkers compete to grow the longest bean

Drinkers are to take part in a national contest to grow the longest runner bean.
Seed firm DT Brown heard that regulars at The Carpenters Arms near Ely in Cambridgeshire planned to compete to grow the longest bean of ‘Enorma’.
The firm’s Tim Jeffries hit on the idea of a national contest to discover which British pub or club could grow the…