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More Temptation!


A few miles away up the West Somerset Coast, along narrow lanes, is a small Nursery. It’s ‘appointment only’ for buying, or mail order, or occasionally, as happened this weekend, the owner runs an ‘Open Weekend’ for invited guests. You are made very welcome with mulled wine and cake – and personal service if your eye falls on a particular plant.

That’s where I got tempted when I went to buy my Correa last month – and guess what – I didn’t come away empty handed this time!

Remember my Coprosma ‘Karo Red’ ?

Well, I fell for another one called ‘Evening Glow’ – I hope you can see why!

Isn’t that just beautiful! Ro, the Nursery owner, told me that the leaves will gradually grow more red with colder weather, but it is an evergreen and hardy in our area. Oh dear – I spotted two other varieties!

This one is C. ’Beatson’s Gold’. I wasn’t so keen on the other type, so I managed to turn my back on it – only to see the exact same Hebe I had bought at a large Garden Centre for the centrepiece of my tub!

As a great plantswoman, Ro really knows her plants, and labels every one with its name and conditions required – so now I know that it’s a Hebe recurvea.

That of course is the difference between shopping at a real Nursery or at a Garden Centre where you may or may not find someone who knows plants and what conditions they need.

Hooray for temptation and a chat with a knowledgeable plantswoman, not a touch of glitter or loud music about – just great healthy plants and the joy of buying something beautiful for my garden.

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Hi spritz, can well see why you gave in to temptation! you have some lovely additions! it sounds like you have some lovely nurseries near you, you are very lucky. the ones near us are far and few between (good ones that is) and as i don't have a car at the moment kind of limits me because the decent ones are all out in the sticks. it was so much easier when i had a flower shop and a nice big van - the problem was i used to get tempted far too much and not too good a resisting, living close to london does have some advantages like the Chelsea Flower show for one, - now theres a place to go if you really want to impress and make everyone green with envy! - not very cheap though. and there's the New Covent Garden Market - if ofcouse you don't mind driving through central london at 1am but when i had to do it for the shop i used to end up with more plants for my garden than flowers for the shop lol. but i have niether the shop or the van anymore, so i have to make do with B & Q or Homebase for my basics, and the rest i buy on line - problem with that is you don't always get a healthy plant after going through the post.

1 Dec, 2007


I know I'm lucky I can (and do) go to the big Garden Centres and also pop into B&Q where, as you know, they often have nice plants, not too bad for price, either. The small family-run Nurseries are the places I go to find unusual plants, and advice. Because I'm retired, I can take a morning to travel to one of them. When I was working or at home with the children it was different, so I do understand. Where we live now we are very rural with no public transport! Without a car I'd be completely stuck... it would be E-Bay and by-post plants for me, too! Do you use the RHS Plant finder on line? The Nurseries I go to are all in it, and do mail order... all reputable, too. No duff plants or arguments, I am quite sure. I'll send you a list if you'd like. You are right about missing out on Chelsea, but I did go to the AG show at Shepton Mallett this year, tiny compared to Chelsea but a good day out.

1 Dec, 2007


yes that would be great if you could send me a list please. i have had some good and some bad on line. i just bought a rose bush off David Austin web site, that is beautiful think i will be shopping there again. and i do know of a couple on ebay that are brilliant for shrubs, i use Van Meuwen for bulbs, have'nt had any problems with them, and T & M for seeds, and sometimes for young plants, but the plants they have sent this year i have had a few problems with, but at least with T & M you don't have a problem getting your money back or a credit note - always lethal! buecause i go back on the web site to use it and end up with loads and spending more money! and as you know B & Q are usally very good for bedding and the occational unusaul plant. it seems to be perennials that i stuggle with at the moment, so if you know of any good supliers on line i would be very greatful of the tip.

2 Dec, 2007


Lovely choices Spritz. I understand the lack of nursery problems only too well. When in the UK I preferred smaller family run nurseries - good plants, personal service and loads of info from the owners. And good prices too!
Here in France the ornamental plant market is just taking off. Most folks are veggie and fruit growers so most places cater for them. The local nurseries with ornamental plants charge an arm and a leg eg Imperata "Red Baron" in a 5" pot was 25 euros (about £19) and the plant none too healthy!
We use Gamm Vert for our outdoor plant needs and Tridome for indoor and bedding. Good plants, reasonably priced but lacking information, so careful purchasing is needed. One of the problems is French labelling as the common names for plants are often different and the latin names often missing.
My father in law bought me a wonderful French book when they visited and so along with the RHS Plant Encyclopedia it is my garden bible.

2 Dec, 2007


For perennials, I would recommend Hardy's Cottage Garden Plants in Hampshire who do mail order. I reckon to pay them a vist at least once a year. Their website is

2 Dec, 2007

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