Real Gardens Episode 11

Real Gardens Episode 11

In this weeks Real Gardens episode 11 Monty Don is in Huddersfield, to visit Adam & Katie & family.

Adam Waterman
met Katie a Solicitor while working at Huddersfield University. That was 5 years ago, they are now married with 4 young children, Poppy-Anna, Harmony, Zack and Tarais. 

Adam & Katie

Since they got married, Adam has become a keen allotmenteer, having 3 allotments very close to their cottage. 

Katie is not so keen on Adam's hobby as their garden at home has become neglected as Katie is kept busy by their Young family.

Adam & Katie garden

Adam knows his veg but not much about flowers but he has made a start in the front garden. 

He has added some trellis, put in some decking and installed a Wendy house for the children. 

They have also had the builders in to extend their cottage.

Monty Don arrives to look round the garden, Monty puzzled why the huge Wendy house is so close to the main house, but it is for convenience?

Adam wants a new bed made near the children's area so they can slide through it.

At the front of the garden there is a lawn that Adam wants surrounded by wind friendly planting. 

Katie wants him to be more organised and Adam has a plan already drawn up.

garden plan

Lots of Adam plants are in pots so they set to work moving them into place to see how it will look. 

Along the new trellis is some small raised troughs all ready for the squashes Adam has to plant out. 

They are a mixture of edible and ornamental and Adam has a tunnel through the trellis they will cover and hang down from.

They water them in and Adam will cover with compost from his allotment.

Monty Don

Talking of allotments, Monty cant wait to visit Adam's pride and joy. With a family of vegetarians, Adam tries to produce 90 per cent of the family's needs in his 3 allotments.

Adam method of gardening is to have raised beds covered in agricultural paper which he plants through. It is all organic. 


Adam talks Monty through the process of making his raised beds. The ground was double dug 2 years ago and then he adds compost. 

He marks out the bed with string, leaving a 18 inch gap between beds. They then dig out the path either side and add the soil to the bed.

They cover the path with weed suppressing membrane and cover with bark chippings.

They screw the wooden sides of the bed together and bury a length of hose with holes in it that they will connect to a water butt later.

They then cover the bed with composted manure. They then cover that in the agricultural paper and secure it under the bed. 

Monty Don and Alan

Adam says the virtues of using the agricultural paper is that it reflects light, conserves water, prevents weeds and slugs do not like it.

They plant up the bed with 2 different Kale, Black Tuscan Cabbage and Uncle Bert's Purple as well as some Brussels Sprouts. 


Monty not a fan of the no dig system of gardening as he likes to feel the soil.

Adam shows Monty his new poly tunnel which cost him £550 to buy and he hopes to extend his growing season. He has used the same raised bed system. He has got onions, peppers, aubergines, courgettes, lettuce, corn, and carrots.

Monty Don and Adam in polytunnel

Katie arrives to see why they are still at the dreaded allotment and Monty makes a swift exit!

Ann-Marie Powell is in Islington, North London, to visit Pat & Sandy, in their Jungle garden.

Pat Wallace's garden is a jungle! The North London Cabbie who we first visited in Episode 10 has now broken his leg leaving his wife Sandy to do all the gardening.

Pat Wallace

Ann-Marie Powell returns to see Pat with his feet literally up and enjoying his jungle paradise from a comfy recliner! 

Pat broke his foot at work but can still have an input in the garden design.

Ann-Marie is going to have her work cut out turning Pat's collection of plants into an attractive looking garden. 

Pat already has some design ideas planned out as well as a mood board.

garden plan

Pat has too many palms all stuffed in and you cannot see his favourite ones at the back. 

Pat has a lot of plants on one side he does not like, so they can all go. There is also some room by the pond. 

They start by digging out the offending plants. A lot of hard digging gets the stumps all up.

Now they have some space, Ann-Marie wants a sweep of plants, increasing in height, not just another jumble of plants for the new area. 

They also decide to curve it so the back of the garden is hidden.

Ann-Marie Powell and Sandy

They start by moving a once hidden Mexican Blue Palm Brahea Armata, next some Jelly Palms Butia Capitata are moved behind the pond right on the waters edge. 

They then add some of the smaller potted plants to add the curve to the path including a beautiful lily.


This has brought much more light, texture and mystery to the garden with the sweeping path.


They head off down the new path into the jungle, will we see them again?

Carol Klein is in Chulmleigh Devon, to visit Chris & Bill, in their Country garden.

Chris and Bill Skeels first met in Southend in 1980, Chris a beautician and Bill a heating engineer. 

Wanting something different, the couple 7 years ago bought a pair or run down cottages and moved to the Devon countryside near Chulmleigh.

Chris and Bill Skeels

They wanted the rural idyllic dream, with big ideas on doing the houses up, keep chickens and goats but are now sheep farmers and the house remains unfinished.

Bill does all the hard landscaping and building and Chris looks after the plants in the garden. Carol got into gardening when she gave up smoking!

Chris and Bill Skeels garden

They have already created a lawned area, surrounded by shrubs and trees, and a formal garden for sitting out on the south side of the house.

Chris and Bill Skeels garden

Carol Klein arrives to see the new formal area and to sort out the plants for this huge area.  They have some raised decking leading from the house and the rest of the area is gravelled.

Carol Klein and Bill Skeels

Bill has been busy making a plant propagator for the greenhouse so they can grow as many plants as they can to fill the garden. 

They line the bottom of the decking board box with plastic and add 2 inches of coarse sand. 

Next they add a thermostatically controlled cable for warmth and covered with more sand ready for trays of seeds.

plant propagator

Carol and Chris are taking cuttings from a Common Gum Cistus Cistus Landanifer in the border. 

Carol takes a cutting off down to a bud and pops it straight into a plastic bag. Softwood cuttings are the best for this plant and no cuttings with flowers on.

They put peat free multi purpose compost into seed trays and flatten it down and trim the cuttings to a leaf node, remove the bottom leaves and pinch out the top. 

Carol then dips them in a rooting hormone powder and pops them into the seed tray. Chris decides to try half the tray with no hormone powder to see what works best.

plant cuttings

Carol then tops it off with grit. They should be ready to pot on in the Autumn.

All photographs copyright of Channel 4

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