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At Hartley Botanic we have a good relationship with many knowledgeable garden writers both in the UK and USA – here you can enjoy reading their articles and gardening tips.

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Written in United States

Greenhouse Heating Part 3: Keeping heat inside

Heating a greenhouse can be expensive over a long, cold winter, and not just at night. Winter sunshine doesn’t provide a huge amount of heat, and the cold air outside lowers greenhouse temperatures even more. Inside my greenhouses here in New England, summer temperatures outside can easily soar to over 100˚F, but during winter the […]

Written in United States

What’s that White Stuff in my Potting Mix?

When you’re transplanting in the greenhouse this fall, your soil mix will probably be peppered with small white granules. Yes, that’s perlite. But, after years of using it at my own potting bench, I realized I didn’t actually know what it is, or where it comes from, or whether its environmentally sustainable. For answers, I […]

Written in United States

Greenhouse Heating Part 2: Heater Choices

Having decided on the power source you want to use to heat your greenhouse (see my Greenhouse Heating, Part 1 article), you still have another major decision to make: What heating unit are you going to buy? The options are often numerous and not easy to narrow down. Here are some factors to consider as […]

Written in United States

Urban Orchards: a rethink

It’s been an exceptional season for peaches; my battered old tree produced its juiciest crop of fat, red ‘Elberta’ peaches ever—at least the ones that survived the squirrels. Daily combat with these rogue rodents reminded me of the fruit trees I’d seen grown in conservatories in England, often as espaliers against a warm wall. Protected […]

Written in United States

Impossible Plants—How to Not be Suckered

Exciting new plant introductions come on the market every year. And yet, how do we, as home gardeners, know what’s real and what’s fakery, put up by fraudsters who will prey on our desire to grow the latest offering? Wouldn’t that purple-leaf tropical vine look great in the greenhouse? How about a pink-flowering weeping willow? […]

Written in United States

Greenhouse Heating. Part 1: Power Source Choices

In New England, heating a greenhouse in winter makes the difference between being able to grow citrus trees or tropical herbs and flowers versus growing only plants that can tolerate cold and even an occasional freeze. For many greenhouse owners in northern climates, growing the tropical and semi-tropical options is just too tempting. This means […]

Written in United States

Fruits in the garden and greenhouse

The other day I almost picked a quince. It was an incidental quince:  The Japanese flowering quince shrub it was growing on had been planted for stunning coral-and-white spring flowers, not for fruit. However, the plant hadn’t gotten that memo and had developed half a dozen substantial, apple-like fruits anyway. Unfortunately, the shrub wasn’t mine, […]

Written in United States

Grade Your Garden—New Plants Go to the Top of the Class

At this back-to-school season, it’s time to study—what gets an A in your garden and greenhouse, and what rates an F? Take notes on both the perfect and the problem areas. Then you can hunt for plants that fit into these two categories. If, say, your foxgloves were a glory, find more for next year. […]