Two Wests & Elliott's GardenBlog

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Potting Benches – Dedicated to Nurturing

Potting benches are the ideal place to begin to cultivate your garden, whether you have them in a shed or outhouse or if they’re out in the open.

The allow you to create a dedicated space where you can move seedlings over to their own pots, re-plant crops that have outgrown their current crops or even perform more delicate tasks that aren’t even related to potting, like taking cuttings from existing plants.

A potting table allows you to have a place where you can get lost in your gardening and completely immerse yourself in the experience, rather than having to clear a space at the kitchen table or worry about getting soil all over the place.

Another advantage of having a potting bench is the added storage it provides. Many potting tables and benches have cupboards or shelves underneath that are perfect places to store plant pots, bags of soil or even tools so that everything you need to work on your planting is in one place. No more rooting through the garage and shed to try and find the dibber or searching in the greenhouse for the trowel!

Potting benches come in many shapes, sizes and designs, with something to suit everyone. For the city gardener with just a small space to tend such as a rooftop or a small yard, it is possible to buy a folding potting bench Obviously this will not have the storage options but it will allow you to pot in peace and simply fold the table away after use – great for storing too.

For the gardener with a little more space, there are plenty of potting benches with large worktops and plenty of storage for your soil, pots and tools. Some even have backs to them which give you the opportunity to hang tools from hooks for even easier access.

Whilst many potting sheds will be used indoors, in greenhouses, shed or outhouses, some may prefer to have their potting bench outside in the open air. Whilst this allows you to get some fresh air whilst gardening, in the British summer it’s likely that you will experience some rainfall so a little cover is recommended, especially if you’re doing a lot of planting.

Potting benches are available in metal and wood giving you the option to choose which kind of style would benefit you. If you have a rustic theme going on then wooden potting benches are a good choice but for sturdiness and longevity it’s hard to beat a metal potting table.

Browse our range of potting benches online at Two Wests and Elliot to see what kind of potting area will best suit you.


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Fruit cages for protecting your produce

Fruit cages are a brilliant invention that creates a barrier around your produce to protect it from birds and other vermin that could destroy your crop.

Growing fruit is a great way to save money and provide yourself with some delicious home grown produce. If you have a bumper crop or a large allotment you could even make some money by selling the fruit to your neighbours and friends.

It’s also a great way to fuel your gardening hobby and is a rewarding past time in the summer months when the sun is shining and you can see your produce flourishing.

This is why it can be so devastating when a squirrel or a bird spies your fruit and decides to pilfer it, taking away your reward and often destroying the crop in the process.

Fruit cages protect your fruit by providing a boundary that cannot be crossed by vermin or birds, but still allows the plants access to the sun and rain to let them grow naturally, with different heights and sizes available to ensure that the plants never run out of room to grow.

There are many different kinds of fruit cage to choose from, some of which can be expensive. A heavy duty fruit cage can cost quite a bit, but if you have a serious rodent problem or you just can’t scare away the birds and have tried everything, they are a worthwhile investment to protect your plants.

Fruit cages are a worthwhile purchase for any keen gardener who doesn’t want their produce to be vulnerable to creatures, they can be used as a vegetable cage or even just to protect delicate plants that you have in your garden and don’t want to risk being trampled.

At Two Wests we have a large selection of our own brand fruit cages as well as fruit cage frames which allow you to build your own cage. If looked after properly, fruit cages can last for many seasons which makes them a popular investment for gardeners who are growing around the year and want to protect their plants at all times.

 


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Boost Your Garden With a Propagator

Propagating is a great way to increase your plant stock by taking cuttings from successful plants and using them to grow new shoots and create a new plant. The best part is that propagating is free – all you need is the equipment to get started which you can find at Two Wests.

Depending on how much of a seasoned gardener you are you may already have the propagating trays, covers and garden supplies necessary to begin, but just in case you don’t then head over to Two Wests to browse our range of propagators.

Propagating is the process of using cuttings of a current plant to create more plants for your garden and is popular practice amongst gardeners, especially those who like to grow veg. Propagating is a great way to maintain your garden’s image and quickly expand it for free without having to buy more seeds or small plants.

It also helps you choose the strongest plants or the most fruitful. For a veg-grower, using a propagator to grow more versions of the highest-yeilding plant from the previous season is an effective way to increase the yield of your crop if the conditions are similar. It works the same with fruit, flowers or any other plant you are attempting to grow: just make sure you take your clippings from a strong plant to begin with.

A propagator is a useful tool that should be in every gardener’s arsenal. There are a range available, including a dedicated propagating bench or propagating tray that can be powered with electricity or you can even use hydroponics – the art of growing plants in a nutrient-rich chemical solution without water.

The art of propagating can take a while to learn as you need to know when the best time to plant your seeds are. For example if you are wanting to grow squashes like pumpkins then you need to prepare your seed trays three weeks before the last spring frost, but if you want more delicate plants like peppers you need to plant them six weeks before.

This is mostly trial and error but there is plenty of advice out there for help on when to get your propagating tray started. When you do know the appropriate times it is a good idea to write them in a calendar or diary so you will be able to remember for next year – otherwise you’ll have to do all the research again!

 

 

 


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Freshening up for Spring – From Raised Beds to Garden Arches

Now that we’re heading towards the end of winter it’s time to start thinking about freshening up your garden’s image, whether you’re wanting to completely re-landscape it or you want a bit of a restyle. We’ve put together a few hints and tips to give your garden a new image without the upheaval of a complete landscape:

1.Raised Beds

Raised beds are a great way to add some character to your garden, especially if you want to put in some new plants or perhaps even create a vegetable patch. A raised bed will also make it easier for you to manage things such as changing the soil composition or pH, as you can just empty the bed and start over.

To make your raised beds successful you could also buy accessories such as support frames, especially useful if you plan to grow climbers in them, or cold frames and covers so you can protect your plants in the winter months.

2. Garden Benches

A garden bench is a great way to improve your garden’s atmosphere whilst giving you a place to relax after a hard day’s gardening. Garden benches are best placed at the bottom of the garden or in a place where you are able to sit and admire your horticultural creation.

Garden benches come in a range of styles and there is something to suit everyone’s tastes. There are metal garden benches as well as the standard wooden bench seat as well as a variety of bench styles to choose from. You could opt for a romantic garden love seat to spend some quality time with your significant other or stick with a classic two seater, whatever you choose will add another dimension to your outside space.

3. Greenhouse

A greenhouse is a brilliant addition to your garden and will give you the opportunity to spend some time growing your own fruit and vegetable or cultivating flowers that need to thrive in a warmer temperature.

There are literally thousands of greenhouses available on the market including plastic greenhouses and timber greenhouses, each one ideal for its own purpose. Greenhouses are great because you can fill them with whatever you want, and there is so much potential in them for shelving or adding workbenches, even a mister or heater can be added according to the temperature and needs of the plant.

4. Potting Benches and accessories

Having accessories such as potting benches and a variety of garden accessories around the garden can add some charisma to your space and make it seem stylish whilst giving it an authentic feel, especially wooden versions. Potting benches can also come in handy for actually potting your new plants in sprint or transferring them to larger pots as they grow.

Although potting benches and other garden accessories make great ornaments and features for a garden, it’s worth remembering the amount of rain we have in the UK. If you are intending to leave your potting bench outside then try and ensure it will be somewhere relatively dry.

5. Garden Arches

Garden arches are great decorative pieces that will bring a touch of style to any garden, providing you have a pathway through the garden. The use of garden arches are perfect for separating different parts of your garden, such as a vegetable or flower garden and a section of lawn turf.

By coupling garden arches with small fences you can create an effective barrier between areas of your garden. Garden arches are also extremely effective frames for climbing plants and some amazing effects can be created by taking advantage of this with flowers such as roses or even ivy to give the arch a fairytale appearance.

Try all of these tips to freshen up your garden in time for spring.


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Can You Guess How Many Petals are on our Livingstone Daisies?

As we start to sow seeds and anticipate the colourful summer gardens we thought we’d bring some of the summer colour into January with our Livingstone Daisies competition!

Here is a picture of some of our gorgeous Livingstone Daisies in full sun. For your chance to win £50 worth of Two Wests & Elliott vouchers all you need to do is to tell us how many petals are on the flowers visible in the picture – it couldn’t be simpler!

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This can be done via Facebook or Twitter . . .

Facebook – simply like our facebook page (or if you already ‘like us’ then just like the competition post) and tell us how many petals you think you can see. If you don’t want to count just have a guess – you never know you could guess correctly! Find our facebook page here:
https://www.facebook.com/twowests.co.uk

Twitter – simply follow us on twitter and guess how many petals are in our picture of Livingstone Daisies, sending your guess to our Twitter handle @TwoWestsElliott using #PetalPower. Our Twitter profile is here: https://twitter.com/TwoWestsElliott ! Good luck and happy tweeting!

New to Twitter?
Signing up and entering our competition is as easy as 1…2…3!
1. Visit: https://twitter.com/signup to fill in your details, then click ‘create an account’
2. Once your account has been set up, click on ‘compose tweet’
3. See here for a sample entry tweet for our competition: ‘400 petals @TwoWestsElliott #TryYourLuck’
4. Click ‘Tweet’

Our competition will end on the 31st January and we will announce the lucky winner on the 2nd February. If no one gets the correct number the prize will go to the person with the nearest guess. If there are duplicate winning guesses, the winner will be determined by a random draw.

Good luck and happy counting!

At Two Wests we have a great selection of gardening supplies and materials that are perfect for growing your own flowers just like the ones in our competition. Whether you need a seed tray to plant your seeds or a propagating tray to encourage them to grow,then we are the perfect place to go.


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Is There Beauty in Your Garden?

Is There Beauty in Your Garden?

The run-up to Christmas is a magical time to be in the great outdoors: enjoying the beautiful foliage and interesting creatures which call our gardens home.  So as it’s a time to celebrate the beauty that still exists in Britain’s gardens (even when it’s cold!), we’re running a competition!

Is your landscape your pride and joy this season? Or do you have a beautiful garden picture to share with us (of anything at all!)..?

…then you could be the lucky winner of a fun-filled basket of *Christmas goodies worth £50!

So to keep your garden in tip top shape for the New Year and beyond, why not have a go?

How to enter:

Simply take a picture of something beautiful in your garden, and tweet in your entry to our Twitter handle @TwoWestsElliott using #BeautyInYourGarden!

Deadline for entries is midnight on the 12th December 2014 and we’ll announce the lucky winner on the 15th December 2014 at midday! Good luck and happy tweeting!

New to Twitter?

Signing up is as easy as 1…2…3!

  1. Click this link and fill in your details in the form, clicking ‘create an account’. https://twitter.com/signup
  2. Once your account has been set up, click on ‘compose tweet’.
  3. Click on ‘add photo’ and upload your landscape image.

 

See below for a sample entry tweet for our competition: capture

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

*Applications are only valid after following the Two Wests & Elliott Twitter handle and sending their garden image to @TwoWestsElliott. The winner will be judged and decided by Two Wests & Elliott.

See Two Wests for an extensive range of grdening supplies that will help you create beautiful flowers of your own in your own space. We can supply everything from potting tables and benches to a misting kit to keep your flowers moist constantly.

 


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Can You Guess How Many Flowers are in Our Hanging Basket? #TryYourLuck

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The glorious British summer may be a fading memory, but our Twitter Competition is in full bloom!

To welcome the autumn season, we’re giving away £50 worth of Two Wests & Elliott Vouchers* to help one of our lucky green-fingered friends spruce up their autumn landscape!

Have a keen eye? Simply follow us and guess how many flowers are in our hanging basket below, sending your guess to our Twitter handle @TwoWestsElliott using #TryYourLuck.

The competition ends on the 31st October 2014 and we will announce the lucky winner on the 2nd November 2014 on our Twitter profile here: https://twitter.com/TwoWestsElliott ! Good luck and happy tweeting!

New to Twitter?

Signing up and entering our competition is as easy as 1…2…3!

  1. Visit: https://twitter.com/signup to fill in your details, then click ‘create an account’
  2. Once your account has been set up, click on ‘compose tweet’
  3. See here for a sample entry tweet for our competition:   ‘546 flowers @TwoWestsElliott #TryYourLuck’
  4. Click ‘Tweet’

 

* Entries are valid after following the Two Wests & Elliott Twitter handle and sending a guess by @mentioning @TwoWestsElliott. The nearest guess will win the prize.  If there are duplicate winning guesses, the winner will be determined by a random draw.

At Two Wests you can find a great range of gardening supplies for every level of gardener. You can buy quality raised beds to get you started right up to Elite greenhouses for the seasoned gardener.

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