Real Gardens Episode 9

Real Gardens  Episode 9

In Real Gardens episode 9, Ann-Marie Powell is in Harrow, to visit Lisa, Dominic, Sophia & Grace.

Its now June, when we return for the final time to Lisa Jacobson small Harrow back garden which featured in Episode 2, Episode 4 and Episode 6.

Lisa Jacobson

So far with the help of Ann-Marie Powell,  Lisa's 18 months project of making the garden a child friendly and attract garden has included tidying up and opening up the end of the garden.

Customising and moving the shed / playhouse and making a new flower bed.

Lisa with the help of her family has made even more improvements by widening the brick path, putting bark on the play area in front of the playhouse / shed.

Lisa got the idea from a friend who also advised her to add weed suppressive membrane first, before laying the bark.

flower bed

Ann-Marie arrives for her last visit and is Impressed with the changes including the painting Lisa has done to the fencing and concrete. 

She has also had a wooden front made to the bed by the patio doors to keep the pots looking tidy.

The flower bed is all growing well as well as some weeds. The playhouse / shed has had a coat of green paint and strawberries added to the window boxes. 

wooden fencing planks

Lisa has made a frame to make a trellis and has cut up some old wooden fencing planks which she hopes Ann-Marie will make into the trellis. 

They add the rustic broken planks horizontally to the frame then Lisa is moving a evergreen passion flower to grow up it. 

The  look is certainly rustic! They are freeing the climber from its pot and planting it in the more suitable sunny position it will now hopefully flower.

Ann-Marie Powell and Lisa

The next job is to paint the boring wooden shiplap fencing. Lisa has chosen white to extend the colour of the house and to give a Mediterranean backdrop for climbers. 

Sister Suzanne arrives to free them from the painting to be able to start the next job.


The new flower border has quite a few weeds popping up and Lisa has bought some white stones and limestone to mulch and suppress them with. 

First they weed the border. They tip out the 2 stones to mix them on some plastic sheeting and shovel them onto the bed. 

This will not only keep the weeds down but also retain the water. A good tip is to cover delicate plants first with a plant pot.

The final job is some finishing touches to the garden. Ann-Marie drills and fixes some aluminium window box style planters to the house walls below the kitchen window. 

Suzanne fills them with Rosemary and a selection of herbs.

Ann-Marie Powell gravel

Lisa Brother David arrives to tidy up the edges of where the membrane meets the new extended brick path with some more bricks. 

David previously lived in the house and he actually constructed the path.

Fairy lights are then added to the flower beds for added sparkle for a temporary feature. 

Some torch lanterns and candle lanterns are added and the garden is complete.

Finished garden

The garden now looks fresh and modern with some unique quirky design features. 

The gardeners are happy and a bit exhausted by the final push to complete the garden. 

With the bubbly cork popped Lisa thanks everyone for their hard work as they toast the garden.

Finished garden

Lisa is looking forward to pottering in the garden now the hard work has been done. Cheers!

Monty Don is in Guernsey, to visit Liz & Rod, in their garden with a lake view

Liz & Rod Collenette Guernsey garden is stunning. It not only has amazing views but well stocked beds and vegetable gardens which all flourish in the mild island microclimate.

Liz & Rod Collenette Guernsey garden

In Episode 8 the bramble bank was cleared and levelled with Monty Don at the controls of the digger. They also trimmed the tree to open up a viewing window.

12 years ago, back problems meant that Liz had to give up the hard manual side of maintaining her garden and has adapted to using just a 4 inch trowel! 

This has given her a intimate insight into her soil which she feels she knows very well from working so closely to it.

Liz & Rod Collenette Guernsey garden

This week Monty visit is to work on the huge greenhouse in Liz impressive garden. 

The hand built 75ft greenhouse is built round a curved wall which they have had to rebuild. 

Liz & Rod Collenette Guernsey garden

Liz wants to shade the greenhouse using lime mixed in a bucket with 3 parts water, 1 part Lime. They don protective clothing, goggles and gloves.

Using small pots they literally throw the mixture over the glass roof and windows. It provides dappled shade until it is washed off by the autumn rains.

Inside the greenhouse is a huge Prickly Pear Opuntia whose flowers only last 1 day. Liz has carrots and peas growing in beds. 

A  Peach tree is growing along the curved stone wall along with nectarines.

In an empty bed Liz has in trays melons, tomatoes, chillies, peppers, aubergines and basil waiting to go in. 

Monty says that Liz takes it all for granted but he is 'like a kid in a sweetshop'. 

inside greenhouse

Liz has an amazing grape vine growing but it is too close the glass so needs tackling. 

They remove all the side shoots that are growing towards the glass giving it more air and light. 

Removing all the branches that do not have any fruit, the main stems are tied to supporting wires so the grapes hang freely underneath.

They leave some of the leaves to shade the fruit.

The pruning needs to be done once a week to keep it under control.

Monty Don and Liz
Copyright Channel 4

In the next greenhouse bed is Liz's Geraniums which have been there for years. 

Next to these are the early potatoes that have already nearly finished due to the warm interior of the greenhouse.

The final part is Citrus Corner which is not doing so well! Sooty mould, scale and Aphids are making for some very unhealthy plants that don't like being indoors. 

Liz confessed they have always just been kept in the greenhouse. Monty tuts at the fact they have never been outside, re-potted or pruned. 

rotten fruit

Liz hands Monty the secateurs and he quickly starts by removing the straggly side growth. 

He gives it a radical trim back to the main stem and after suggested a good feed of seaweed and to repot it. It then needs putting outside, a weekly feed and regular watering. 

These are tougher than they look but needs some TLC to get them back in to condition. 

Liz decides to add them to her new terrace which is sunny and sheltered. Perfect for an evening gin and tonic, when they recover and bear fruit!

Carol Klein is in Felixstowe Suffolk, to visit Diana a 'Plantaholic'. 

Diana Harold a retired school teacher has a plant buying problem for her Felixstowe seaside garden.

We visited Diana's wrap around garden in Episode 1, Episode 3, Episode 5 and Episode 7.

With the help of, Diana has made a woodland path, added a pottage vegetable patch and added climbers to her trellis.

Diana Harold garden

The plant mountain on the patio still remains a problem. This is Carol last visit, will she be able to tackle the problem? 

Although they had cleared some of the climbers Diana has bought even more!

Diana Harold garden

Carol arrives and is shocked at the amount of plants awaiting homes!

A shady area under a lime tree is an ideal spot to rehome some of the plants. They start work by clearing the wilderness of brambles and plants. 

First they remove some salvageable plants and fork out the brambles. Diana has been pruning the brambles but this has just encouraged more growth. 

Diana does not approve of napalm style weed killer. 

The bramble roots and stems are taken to the tip as they are unsuitable for composting as they will just regrow.

Diana Harold garden

The dense undergrowth has been cleared, now to choose some plants for the dappled shady area.  

Starting at the back with laying out the plants, the Red-berried Elder (cultivar) Sambucus Racemosa 'Plumosa Aurea', with golden ivy and clematis on the fence. 

Diana had put her Cast-Iron plant Aspidistra Elatior outside but it has been scorched by the sun so it will thrive in the shady spot.

Diana Harold garden

With the plants all laid out, Carol tells Diana that they wont be adding manure as woodland plants do not live in rich soil and this will burn them. 

They get on with the planting and water them in.

Now for the sun loving plants, Diana has already enlarged the bed. 

Getting the right plant for the right place is the most crucial thing in the garden and your nursery or garden centre should be able to advise you.

Carol Klein Diana Harold

Leaving Diana to finish the planting of the chosen plants and leaving just a few on the patio homeless Carol says her goodbyes to Diana and her seaside garden.

Monty Don on Strawberries

The most important thing to do is to make sure the ripening fruits do not rot into the ground. 

By adding straw underneath the fruit it will keep them dry and clean. But Monty finds in his garden this also houses slugs.

Monty Don

So Monty uses horticultural grit as it works the same way but also deters slugs.

All photographs are copyright of Channel 4

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