I grow many flowers for cutting, including outdoor spray chrysanthemums.  I take cuttings from my over-wintered stools (the root part) and grow them on.  This year there was great disappointment when I brought the stools out from their winter storage.  Practically half had not survived the harsh winter.  Normally, I would consider I’d been unlucky if I’d lost one or even two! However, I must look on the bright side and although it has proved rather expensive I can now look forward to growing some new varieties that I have had to purchase to replace my stock.

Apart from losing one or two shrubs we seem to have come through the severe winter rather well.  I’m also convinced it has done many plants good to have had a long rest under all that snow and frost.  The blossom on the trees has been exceptional and the spring bulbs were particularly beautiful.  My Asiatic lilies are looking very strong and the alstromerias are growing away very healthily.  With the weather in April being so warm and dry we are well up with the work in the garden.  Seeds are coming through and the potatoes are up.  The ground is all prepared ready for planting out the chrysanthemums in May.  I seem to be spending several hours a day in the greenhouse pricking out and potting on plants. The tomatoes look good and will soon go into their permanent positions.  This year I have grown Ailsa Craig and Gardener’s Delight.  There is nothing quite like the flavour of a good home grown tomato.

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