AT LAST, I’ve begun to feel a bit better from the debilitating virus picked up in late November.

I seem to have had a continual cold and sore throat and the garden has missed me. I’ve just had to spend a lot of money having a tree surgeon come in and cut back and shape the crown of the large conifer at the top of the garden. It was there when we moved in and has grown quite large. It is a great feature of the garden and was professionally trimmed about eight years ago. I must say that it does look a lot better now for its trim and the upper patio will be much lighter now.

While I have not undertaken any new projects this winter to make my garden look different, I have just not felt like it, I am already planning where to locate existing large containers with trees and shrubs, along with sculpture and ornaments, the aim being to create a different feel to the plot.

For me, this is where containers really come into their own, allowing their changing locations to add to the gardens’ creativity.

Another new plant that has arrived recently is a lovely new Begonia. It has exquisite deep rose blooms, edged with a delicate white margin which are borne in profusion throughout the summer, lasting well into autumn.

This sensational tuberous Begonia is set to make a breath-taking focal point in some of my patio pots this season.

I’m assured the serrated, bright green foliage, which forms an attractive rounded plant will remain neat and compact throughout the growing season. It’s weather-proof and reliable, and Begonia x tuberhybrida ‘”Camelia’”is easy to grow whether you plant it in sun or shade.

I can’t wait to see the results.

I recently wrote about a new community garden joining the Macmillan Coastal Garden Trail this year. Well, we now have a second community garden in the city joining us too.

Peter Spence from Albion Community Garden, behind St Peter’s Church, contacted me recently and confirmed they would like to take part. They were proud to win a silver medal in Brighton and Hove City in Bloom last summer and have gained support from local and national businesses.

Neighbours have made friendship groups and many are now growing their own food. A lovely addition to the event which now has 15 gardens signed up for July 25 and 26.

Read more of Geoff’s garden at