Stuart, Sustainable Living, TV

Top Tips From BBC Gardeners World 2021

BBC Gardeners’ World Live 2021 is now over, having run from Thursday 26th August  through to Sunday 29th and seeing visitors from all over come down to check out the latest in plants, garden design and words of wisdom from Monty Don and others. We popped down to check it out and bring you some of the highlights from the day we visited, so read on for a lowdown on BBC Gardeners’ World and what they think the world of gardening looks like in 2021.

Monty Don

Monty Don in Interview Mode

There’s no denying who’s the Don of the British garden celeb-osphere – anywhere there was a crowd at the Gardeners’ World exhibition, you could be sure Monty Don was nearby. With his trademark scarf and calming gardener’s charm, he had the undivided attention of everyone at his talks on planting for the environment, the future and wildlife in your garden. It was a struggle to find a space near the stage there were so many people crowded around!

This was around 15 minutes before he was scheduled to appear, and it only got busier

Craning our necks and cupping our ears, we were able to make out some of Monty’s tips, which included letting a bit of your garden go to seed for the wildlife, and get a pond to attract even more animals who either need a drink or like to live in it!

Joe Bagley

Joe Bagley with his favourite oxalis – sorry your eyes are closed Joe

Going by the 2021 attendance numbers, there’s no shortage of budding gardeners in the UK. Similarly, it seems the number of experts is ever rising too, and we met one of the newest in Joe Bagley, master of houseplants. He spoke (maybe unsurprisingly!) about houseplants during his stage talk, and we got the chance to meet him at the House of Plants (the man has a theme) later on to ask him all the really hard-hitting questions.

His favourite houseplant is the excellent oxalis triangularis and he has occasionally been accused of being a hoarder – he has around 1400 houseplants in his home after all! His top tips include dusting houseplants, prioritising houseplant location over fears of overwatering (once a week or less will do), and use a compass to work out how much light your plants will get.

Ask The Experts

This wasn’t their chair, but we like to imagine

We also got the chance to speak to The Plant Experts Lucy Chamberlain and Saul Walker, as we had loads of questions our colleague had wanted to ask but was unable to make the show.

  • Autumns full of reds, orange and gold – how would a gardener keep pastel colours in their garden?
    • “Knautia (also called Scabious), echinacea and geraniums all have pastel-shaded varieties that flower later in the year, though geraniums tend to flower all through summer so they might only bring you colour at the beginning of autumn. Salvia’s are great too, along with late lavender, cosmos and sylvestris.”
  • Should beginner gardeners go for hot new plants or stick to older, more established varieties?
    • “Depends on the gardener, but you can’t go wrong with daffodils!”
  • What’s the best way to keep weeds at bay?
    • “Weeding’s complicated, but a bit of research into your specific problem plants will make it easier. Aside from bindweed – pull that all the time.”
  • My roses keep getting black spot disease – how can I prevent this?
    • “Spraying’s best for black spot, and keep fallen leaves away from the plant to prevent is spreading. Add mulch to the base of the plant too. Though most modern roses are pretty resistant.”
  • Does Monty Don grow all his own plants in his greenhouse before planting them out?
    • “You’ll have to ask his gardeners!”