There’s a new year promise of a totally blight-free outdoor tomato from Suttons Seeds. If you, like me, have watched you lovely fat tomatoes – just on the point of ripening – succumb to the dreaded blight, you will be as keen as I am to try them. ‘Crimson Crush’ is resistant to all common blight strains in the UK and is reported to carry a good crop of large flavoursome fruit. You can order 3 plants for £7.99 from January 9th onwards.
Titus decided to get into the festive spirit while we were in the garden and climb up into one of the holly bushes – I’m just hoping he doesn’t decide to practice his climbing skills on the Christmas tree when I bring it indoors tomorrow and decorate with the help of my 4 year old grandson. Even if the decorations are all round the bottom of the tree it will be well illuminated because I finally threw away all the old lights last January and ordered new ones in the sale – and I’ve just found them – as well as the ones I bought the year before and didn’t find in time!
Camellia ‘Quintessence’ is the perfect camellia for growing in a container. It is slow growing with a spreading habit and will never grow taller than 1.25m. Its white flowers are delicately flushed with pink and have a light but distinct scent. My plant has been growing happily in a pot for the past ten years.
Carolyn Dunster absolutely loves roses – she trained in floristry so that she could arrange them, she trained as a garden designer so she could plant gardens filled with them, and then started a company, Simply Roses, selling the very best rose-related products to other rose enthusiasts. At this time of year her deliciously scented Rosa damascena hand wash, floral water and candle perfectly evoke the delicious tea rose scent of mid summer.
Genus Performance Garden Wear (for men and women) is similar to the technical clothing worn by mountaineers and rock climbers – it’s tough, breathable and very flexible – and stylish too. From £35 www.genus.gs
Castor Copper Trowel – once used, all other trowels are pale imitations. It is lightweight and cuts through soil effortlessly. £32 from www.implementations.co.uk
The Gardener’s Full Apron saves changing into gardening clothes when time is short. Made from waxed cotton with deep leather pockets and ties. £45 www.worm.co.uk
The Kneelo cushion is supremely comfortable and lightweight – indispensible for kneeling on hard or wet ground and it comes in nine jolly colours. £14.95 www.burgonandball.com
Gold Leaf Winter Touch Gardening Gloves have a thermal lining for warmth and a waterproof, breathable lining to keep hands dry in the wet. The Rolls Royce of gardening gloves for men and women. £22.95 www.harrodhorticultural.com