Monthly Q&A February

Q&A with Ashley Edwards, Humaira Ikram, Christine Walkden and Matt Biggs

As part of your Premium access, you can send your gardening questions to our horticultural experts each month. They will then answer a selection of the questions they receive, and share the advice at the end of the month.

In the first email newsletter of each month, we’ll remind you to submit your questions. Please note, you will not receive an individual response.

Ask your gardening question now. This month’s Q&A will close at noon on Monday 5th February.


Our experts answer your December 2023 questions:

Watch the answers to your December questions, which were:

  • When should blueberries be pruned?
  • Can I add shredded paper to my compost bin?
  • How and when do I split dahlia tubers?
  • When should I move a gaura plant to a new location?
  • How do I keep a potted fig tree healthy until spring?

Our experts answers to your November 2023 questions

Watch the answers to the November questions, which were:

  • How do I stop squirrels and foxes from digging up my pots and my garden?
  • My photinia hedge, planted against a wall, is turning brown at the edges. What can I do?
  • Is it best to prune older stems or newer stems when pruning a rose?
  • How do I get my oleanders in containers to flower?
  • Should seedlings and overwintering plants be watered in an unheated greenhouse?

Our experts answers to your October 2023 questions

Watch the answers to the October questions, which were:

  • How should I deal with fuchsia rust?
  • When do you lift and how do you store gladioli bulbs?
  • How can I avoid shield bugs infesting my raspberries?
  • When’s the best time to reline my wildlife pond?
  • What should I do about couch grass on my veg plot?

Our experts answers to your September 2023 questions

Watch the answers to the September questions, which were:

  • Why haven’t my dahlia flower buds opened?
  • How do I keep the colour of my maroon hydrangea?
  • How can I remove bamboo which has spread?
  • When I bring cut flowers in, they’re full of insects, what can I do?
  • How do I encourage my morning glory to flower?

Our experts answers to your August 2023 questions

Watch the answers to the August questions, which were:

  • How can I control red spider mite in my greenhouse?
  • Can I put raised beds for vegetables on top of gravel?
  • Why have most of the leaves and flowers on my dahlia been eaten?
  • My compost heap is covered in cleavers, what should I do?
  • Why do my lavender plants flop over?

Our experts answers to your July 2023 questions

Watch the answers to the July questions, which were:

  •  What can I do about weeds in my garden?
  • How do I get flowers lower down on my ‘Gertrude Jekyll’ climbing rose?
  • Why don’t my beetroots and radishes develop properly?
  • Which plants can you propagate from basal and root cuttings?
  • Which plants will grow in hot, dry summers?

Our experts answers to your June 2023 questions

Watch the answers to the June questions, which were:

  •  How can I stop my pears being spoilt by pear midge?
  • Can I move an acer that I planted six weeks ago?
  • Why do the leaves of my agapanthus go brown?
  • Can I use two-year old comfrey feed?
  • How do I dispose of Spanish bluebells that I’ve dug up?

Our experts answers to your May 2023 questions

Watch the answers to the May questions, which were:

  • Can I put potatoes in a grow bag under my mulched apply tree?
  • My roses have black spot and rust, what can I do to save them?
  • Should I feed my new tomato plants?
  • What is the difference between vermiculite and perlite?
  • What is the best use for old compost from containers?

Our experts answers to your April 2023 questions

Watch the answers to the April questions, which were:

  • I’d like to replace my artificial lawn, what can I use instead?
  • When should I prune my lilac?
  • Why is the foliage on my moth orchid going brown?
  • Why aren’t my tulips producing flowers?
  • How do I get long flowering stems on my sweet peas all summer?

Our experts answers to your March 2023 questions

Watch the answers to the March questions, which were:

  • How can I turn a small patch of lawn into a wildflower meadow?
  • Is it ok to plant out climbing roses now?
  • When should I plant out my chitted potatoes?
  • What is the right order for scarifying, mowing, and applying weed and feed to my lawn?
  • Should I remove my seedlings from the propagator and put them on my windowsill?

Our experts answers to your February 2023 questions

Watch the answers to the February questions, which were:

  • It looks like I’ve lost my evergreen agapanthus in the wintery weather, is there anything I can do to save it?
  • Can I prune a fuchsia during winter, or should I wait until spring?
  • Is it possible to move a Salvia x jamensis ‘Hot Lips’, and if so, when?
  • What is the best way to eliminate mealybug on my orchids and streptocarpus?
  • Can I grow asparagus in a raised bed, and how many crowns would fit in?

Our expert’s answers to your January 2023 questions

Watch the answers to the January questions, which were:

  • Why did my healthy pittosporum suddenly lose all its leaves?
  • Why are my leeks so small?
  • Should I tidy up the pine needles from the base of my tree?
  • Is it too late to plant spring bulbs?
  • Is it too late to prune sambucus?

Our expert’s answers to your December 2022 questions

Watch the answers to the December questions, which were:

  • My water butt smells, can I still use this water for vegetables and other plants?
  • How do I look after my banana plant in winter?
  • How can I help my amaryllis flower again?
  • My beech hedge is infested with woolly aphid, what can I do?
  • Hardly any of my beetroot plugs have grown, what has happened?

Our expert’s answers to your November 2022 questions

Watch the answers to the November questions, which were

  • What can I use my greenhouse for over winter? I’m a novice gardener.
  • How do I winter mulch a block of perennials in a border without burying the crowns? Or is it OK to do that?
  • How can I improve the flowering of an old climbing rose?
  • Do I need to remove a variegated alder that has coral spots on the bark?
  • How do I get rid of worm casts in my lawn?

Our expert’s answers to your October 2022 questions

Watch the answers to the October questions, which were:

  • How can I get my peat free compost to retain water?
  • My raspberries got muddled when planting. Can I prune without knowing if they’re summer or autumn-fruiting?
  • Should I remove the large figs on my tree, as they have reached the correct size but aren’t ripening?
  • What can I do to get rid of fuchsia gall mite?
  • I bought some 9cm potted perennials in an autumn sale. Should I pot them on and let them establish in pots until spring or should I put them straight into the borders?

Our expert’s answers to your September 2022 questions

Watch the answers to the September questions, which were:

  • How can I reuse old compost?
  • Should I put pot feet or saucers under my containers?
  • My lawn looks terrible after summer, and crows are pecking it. What can I do?
  • My wisteria has died, but is shooting from the base. Will those new shoots flower?
  • My plum tree has brown rot. What should I do?

Our expert’s answers to your August 2022 questions

Watch the answers to the August questions, which were:

  • What is the best way to revive badly dehydrated potted hydrangeas?
  • I often read about adding ‘loam’ to compost, but what is ‘loam’?
  • My roses are covered in black spot. I don’t want to spray them. Are there any other methods to control it?
  • Why have my runner beans failed?
  • Lots of my brassicas have grown with no centre – cauliflowers with no curds, cabbages with no heart, calabrese with no heads. What is the cause?

Our expert’s answers to your July 2022 questions

  • When should blueberries be pruned?
  • Can I add shredded paper to my compost bin?
  • How and when do I split dahlia tubers?
  • When should I move a gaura plant to a new location?
  • How do I keep a potted fig tree healthy until spring?

Our experts answers to your November 2023 questions

Watch the answers to the November questions, which were:

  • How do I stop squirrels and foxes from digging up my pots and my garden?
  • My photinia hedge, planted against a wall, is turning brown at the edges. What can I do?
  • Is it best to prune older stems or newer stems when pruning a rose?
  • How do I get my oleanders in containers to flower?
  • Should seedlings and overwintering plants be watered in an unheated greenhouse?

Our experts answers to your October 2023 questions

Watch the answers to the October questions, which were:

  • How should I deal with fuchsia rust?
  • When do you lift and how do you store gladioli bulbs?
  • How can I avoid shield bugs infesting my raspberries?
  • When’s the best time to reline my wildlife pond?
  • What should I do about couch grass on my veg plot?

Our experts answers to your September 2023 questions

Watch the answers to the September questions, which were:

  • Why haven’t my dahlia flower buds opened?
  • How do I keep the colour of my maroon hydrangea?
  • How can I remove bamboo which has spread?
  • When I bring cut flowers in, they’re full of insects, what can I do?
  • How do I encourage my morning glory to flower?

Our experts answers to your August 2023 questions

Watch the answers to the August questions, which were:

  • How can I control red spider mite in my greenhouse?
  • Can I put raised beds for vegetables on top of gravel?
  • Why have most of the leaves and flowers on my dahlia been eaten?
  • My compost heap is covered in cleavers, what should I do?
  • Why do my lavender plants flop over?

Our experts answers to your July 2023 questions

Watch the answers to the July questions, which were:

  •  What can I do about weeds in my garden?
  • How do I get flowers lower down on my ‘Gertrude Jekyll’ climbing rose?
  • Why don’t my beetroots and radishes develop properly?
  • Which plants can you propagate from basal and root cuttings?
  • Which plants will grow in hot, dry summers?

Our experts answers to your June 2023 questions

Watch the answers to the June questions, which were:

  • How can I stop my pears being spoilt by pear midge?
  • Can I move an acer that I planted six weeks ago?
  • Why do the leaves of my agapanthus go brown?
  • Can I use two-year old comfrey feed?
  • How do I dispose of Spanish bluebells that I’ve dug up?

Our experts answers to your May 2023 questions

Watch the answers to the May questions, which were:

  • Can I put potatoes in a grow bag under my mulched apply tree?
  • My roses have black spot and rust, what can I do to save them?
  • Should I feed my new tomato plants?
  • What is the difference between vermiculite and perlite?
  • What is the best use for old compost from containers?

Our experts answers to your April 2023 questions

Watch the answers to the April questions, which were:

  • I’d like to replace my artificial lawn, what can I use instead?
  • When should I prune my lilac?
  • Why is the foliage on my moth orchid going brown?
  • Why aren’t my tulips producing flowers?
  • How do I get long flowering stems on my sweet peas all summer?

Our experts answers to your March 2023 questions

Watch the answers to the March questions, which were:

  • How can I turn a small patch of lawn into a wildflower meadow?
  • Is it ok to plant out climbing roses now?
  • When should I plant out my chitted potatoes?
  • What is the right order for scarifying, mowing, and applying weed and feed to my lawn?
  • Should I remove my seedlings from the propagator and put them on my windowsill?

Our experts answers to your February 2023 questions

Watch the answers to the February questions, which were:

  • It looks like I’ve lost my evergreen agapanthus in the wintery weather, is there anything I can do to save it?
  • Can I prune a fuchsia during winter, or should I wait until spring?
  • Is it possible to move a Salvia x jamensis ‘Hot Lips’, and if so, when?
  • What is the best way to eliminate mealybug on my orchids and streptocarpus?
  • Can I grow asparagus in a raised bed, and how many crowns would fit in?

Our expert’s answers to your January 2023 questions

Watch the answers to the January questions, which were:

  • Why did my healthy pittosporum suddenly lose all its leaves?
  • Why are my leeks so small?
  • Should I tidy up the pine needles from the base of my tree?
  • Is it too late to plant spring bulbs?
  • Is it too late to prune sambucus?

Our expert’s answers to your December 2022 questions

Watch the answers to the December questions, which were:

  • My water butt smells, can I still use this water for vegetables and other plants?
  • How do I look after my banana plant in winter?
  • How can I help my amaryllis flower again?
  • My beech hedge is infested with woolly aphid, what can I do?
  • Hardly any of my beetroot plugs have grown, what has happened?

Our expert’s answers to your November 2022 questions

Watch the answers to the November questions, which were

  • What can I use my greenhouse for over winter? I’m a novice gardener.
  • How do I winter mulch a block of perennials in a border without burying the crowns? Or is it OK to do that?
  • How can I improve the flowering of an old climbing rose?
  • Do I need to remove a variegated alder that has coral spots on the bark?
  • How do I get rid of worm casts in my lawn?

Our expert’s answers to your October 2022 questions

Watch the answers to the October questions, which were:

  • How can I get my peat free compost to retain water?
  • My raspberries got muddled when planting. Can I prune without knowing if they’re summer or autumn-fruiting?
  • Should I remove the large figs on my tree, as they have reached the correct size but aren’t ripening?
  • What can I do to get rid of fuchsia gall mite?
  • I bought some 9cm potted perennials in an autumn sale. Should I pot them on and let them establish in pots until spring or should I put them straight into the borders?

Our expert’s answers to your September 2022 questions

Watch the answers to the September questions, which were:

  • How can I reuse old compost?
  • Should I put pot feet or saucers under my containers?
  • My lawn looks terrible after summer, and crows are pecking it. What can I do?
  • My wisteria has died, but is shooting from the base. Will those new shoots flower?
  • My plum tree has brown rot. What should I do?

Our expert’s answers to your August 2022 questions

Watch the answers to the August questions, which were:

  • What is the best way to revive badly dehydrated potted hydrangeas?
  • I often read about adding ‘loam’ to compost, but what is ‘loam’?
  • My roses are covered in black spot. I don’t want to spray them. Are there any other methods to control it?
  • Why have my runner beans failed?
  • Lots of my brassicas have grown with no centre – cauliflowers with no curds, cabbages with no heart, calabrese with no heads. What is the cause?

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