National Gardening Week

This month the UK has been celebrating National Gardening Week since April 15th, and it’s a brilliant motivation to warm up your green fingers after a long, cold winter. You don’t need to have access to a massive garden to get involved with the activities – even if the most you’ve got is a windowsill you can still take part. You can also get some free wildflower seeds from the National Gardening Week website to get you started right away. 2

The two main themes for National Gardening Week this year are wildflowers and careers in horticulture. The Royal Horticultural Society has produced a great video promoting horticultural careers featuring Alan Titchmarsh as the keynote speaker as well as lots of other experts and enthusiasts.

Even if a career in horticulture isn’t for you, it’s definitely one of the most rewarding hobbies you can do. This year’s challenge is to grow a mini wildflower meadow – something you can do in your garden, a raised flower bed or in pots in your home. All you need to get your wildflowers growing happily is four hours of direct sunlight a day, shelter from the wind and a safe spot away from weeds. Once you have a successful mini-meadow on the go you can collect seeds each season to share with friends or grow more wildflowers if you have the space. 3

If you are interested in attracting more wildlife to your garden, a wildflower meadow is a great start. Lots of insects love wildflowers, and birds will also pop along to enjoy the seeds at the end of the year. You can attract butterflies in the summer by growing lots of flowers that have a lot of pollen to be collected. Crocuses are great for this. Having a small pond, lots of trees and a nice big compost heap will also really help turn your garden into a haven for local wildlife. And of course, different bird feeders can be used to attract particular types of birds; which always livens up any garden and helps control pests like greenfly.

Keeping your garden looking beautiful is a big part of your on-going home maintenance, as anyone with a big garden to tend will know. But it is one of the most rewarding aspects of looking after your home too. You can really see your hard work pay off by creating a relaxing environment for yourself and the local wildlife that can be a fantastic escape from some of the more arduous tasks around the home. If you have a particularly big garden or a lot of equipment it might be worth looking for home insurance that also covers your garden, and you can check out to make sure that the garden you’ve worked so hard on is well protected.  

All images from RHS