IT’S a landmark weekend for me.

Today is the first anniversary of me writing this column. In addition, not only is it HM The Queen’s actual birthday today, it’s also my own 65th birthday.

I’m beginning to feel it when I get on with some of the more demanding garden tasks. That aside, all the indicators are that those who engage in gardening are certainly improving their health. All the deep cleaning of my garden has now been completed and it is quite amazing the difference it makes having removed all the ground in dirt on the paving slabs and nautical props. All the wonderful agaves are now settled into their summer homes and are looking stunning in the beach garden. I’ve already taken many pictures to add to my collection.

If you enjoy taking photographs of gardens, then why not enter a competition. The National Garden Scheme has launched its second annual photography competition in association with BBC Gardeners’ World, offering entrants the chance to win WOLF-Garten tools worth over £950. The competition asks amateur photographers and garden enthusiasts to take photographs at National Garden Scheme garden openings this summer. There are six categories to enter, including Garden Wildlife, Beautiful Garden Views and BBC Gardeners’ World Magazine: Fantastic Flowers - from which the winning image will appear in the magazine’s 2019 calendar. Full details can be found at You are spoilt for choice this weekend with three gardens open for the scheme. You can find The Garden House, a secret gem in the City, at 5 Warleigh Road open on Saturday and Sunday. If you want to go a bit further afield, then see Cookscroft in Bookers Lane, Earnley, near Chichester on Saturday.

If you are lucky enough to have a greenhouse, then you need to get it ready for the season. It will need a thorough scrub with hot soapy water to get rid of pests and diseases and to let?in ? more light. I tend to use my pressure cleaner in the first instance and then wipe down afterwards. You can also use a greenhouse fumigator. It is an insecticide smoke to kill flying and crawling insects in greenhouses. It can be used against a range of bugs that might have over-wintered inside. For best results fumigate in the late afternoon and leave the greenhouse for a minimum period of two hours. Once it is all done you can start to buy some youngish annuals.

lRead more about Geoff’s garden at