Real Gardens Episode 16

Real Gardens Episode 16

In Real Gardens Episode 16, Monty Don visits Guernsey to see Liz and Rod and their Garden with a lake view.

Liz Collenette has a 2 acre garden with stunning views of Vale Pond in Guernsey and it has been Liz and Rod's home for the last 30 years.

Liz and Rod's garden

The garden has some wonderful borders as well as a stunning 75ft greenhouse.

We lasted visited the garden in Real Gardens Episode 12 where some poppies were moved around to make them more aesthetically pleasing.

The Poppies are thriving

Some clematis were planted to help disguise an ugly outside toilet. 

Monty Don returns to the Channel Island garden to find Liz's borders still full of colour. 

Monty especially admires the African Lily Agapanthus Africanus that have self seeded themselves. 

African Lily full of colour

Monty heads to the greenhouse next.

In May he helped to lime wash the greenhouse to protect the plants from too much sun. 

Just inside the door of the greenhouse is a huge Prickly Pear Opuntia Ficus-Indica that Liz's son Philip grew as a child. 

Prickly Pears

Monty is not impressed as the thorns can cause some serious damage. 

Liz controls it by whacking off bits with a stick, each bit can regrow but Liz will put them on the bonfire.

Another plant growing well is the Basil and she will pick it and make Pesto, it will then regrow. 

Her Money Maker tomatoes are also doing well. 


Monty next admires her melons, peppers and peaches. 

Rod has put a blanket up to catch the peaches as they fall.

Next job is to head to the nearby beach to collect seaweed for Liz special compost mix. 

Collecting seaweed from the beach

They push their wheelbarrows down to the waters edge and fork it into the barrow.

The mix also has bits of shells in it. It is rich in Potash and can be brought dried.

Back at the compost heap they fork it on to the pile. 

Adding seaweed to the compost heap

Liz also adds shredded paper, kitchen waste, garden waste and dead chickens and rats! 

Monty tells her off but Liz says it all right. 

Liz never turns her heap and leaves it for a year. 

The climate in Guernsey and the homemade compost really shows in her borders even if they may contain the odd bit of dead rat!!

Ann-Marie Powell is in the Cotswolds to see Dilys and her Town garden.

Dilys Wilson has put in a lot of hard work to convert her Wiltshire cottage and has now started work on her pretty walled garden.

The start of the walled Garden

We visited this garden for the first time in Real Gardens Episode 15 where a new Arbour seat was created and some trellis added to start the process of creating a series of rooms

Ann-Marie Powell returns to see that Dilys has removed the stones from the area that will be her new lawn but its way to hot for turf today.

Rebuilding the dry stone wall

There is a dry stone wall that Dilys built in the bottom area of the garden that is bulging and needs rebuilding but first they have to demolish it.

Removing the top stones and placing them to one side to put back later. 

The rest of the stones will be removed and sorted into piles carefully as to not disturb the back soil.

Dilys finds a flat stone

Dilys points out a good stone that's nice and flat and a bad stone that's all uneven. 

To build the dry stone wall you pick up a stone and keep turning it until it fits, starting with the bigger stones at the bottom. 

You then back fill with soil and small stones.

Alpine plants

Dilys has bought a selection of alpines to put in the crevices of the wall. 

The alpines will like the dry conditions in the wall and they plant a sedum after first separating it into 2 plants. 

They add compost and grit and put a stone over the top. 

They repeat this to create a natural look.

The finished dry stone wall

Once finished they top the wall off with the saved stones which will also double as a seat.

Once done they look back and admire their hard work and Ann-Marie leaves Dilys for another week.

Carol Klein visits Chulmleigh Devon to meet Chris and Bill and see their Country garden.

Chris and Bill Skeels

Chris and Bill Skeels moved from Southend in Essex to the small holding in Devon to live a more relaxed lifestyle.

In Real Gardens Episode 15 they planted up the large pond in their large one acre garden.

Bill does all the hard landscaping and Chris Propagates all her own plants and does the planning.

The pond has been topped up

In this episode Carol Klein returns to see the pond which has been topped up and turf has been added to the edges.

Chris has some buckets of sludge from a friends pond and Bill and Carol gently place it in the pond to add new wildlife and nutrients.

The bog garden is dug out

The job today is to add a bog garden to the side of the pond. 

Bill has already dug a hole and lined it with leftover pond liner and Chris has a collection of plants at the ready including some carnivorous plants. 

Chris says that the carnivorous plants require a different soil type of lime free acid conditions to the rest of the bog plants.

Plant added to the bog garden

Carol and Chris pierce the liner and add a layer of gravel and they remove all traces of weeds. They replace the clay soil in the bed. 

The start by placing out the plants Ligularia 'Desdemona' and Ligularia 'The Rocket' that will quickly spread and fill the bed. 

They then add further plants including Spurge Euphorbia Palustris and Daylily's.

Chris and Carol plant plants around the pond

For the Carnivorous plants poor Bill has to dig another area and to create a shallow hole which he lines with the pond liner but without adding any holes. 

Bill adds Moss Peat which is acidic and low in nutrients he then gives it a good soaking. 

The carnivorous plants don't have a lot of roots as they get their nutrients from the dead flies they digest. 

Further plants are planted around the pond and bog garden

They plant Yellow Trumpet Sarracenia Flava and Huntsman's Cup Sarracenia Purpurea.

Carol leaves them to it after telling poor Bill that Chris has plans already to expand the bog garden into his newly laid turf!

Monty Don on dividing Flag Irises

Monty Don on dividing Flag Irises

To divide the plant you need to cut off the edges after it is dug up ad then you replant them in a shallow hole and cut off the top of the leaves.

You need to divide them up every 3 years.

All photographs are copyright of Channel 4

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