It’s Easter this weekend and one flower in particular in the garden that is linked to the religious festival is the daffodil, along with a few other spring bulbs.

They are all symbolic of new life, however, the daffodil’s association with Easter doesn’t stop there. Legend has it that the first daffodil appeared in the garden of Gethsemane to comfort Jesus before he was taken away to be tried and crucified. In England, daffodils are also known as Lenten lilies, because they bloom early during Lent. I’ve got many coming into flower in the garden all looking beautiful. One in particular, that I bought last autumn, is “replete”, which is a fantastic double flowering variety that produces large, creamy apricot-coloured blooms. They really make a statement in containers up the central steps in my garden.

The last week has seen me get the plant food out and feed every single flower and shrub throughout the front and back garden. It’s a task that can take several hours, but for me, always well worth the effort. I try to feed every eight to ten days throughout the season and it really does help create wonderful displays in the garden. I prefer to use one that dissolves in water and then I feed via a watering can rather than a hose attachment.

A task you might like to consider this weekend is to start to plant summer flowering bulbs in your borders and containers. A few popular choices are begonias, dahlias, allium, Oriental lilies and freesia. If you have stored them over winter, carefully sort through the bulbs and remove any that are diseased or rotted. Set in trays of moist compost to encourage them into growth or plant directly into borders or containers. Alternatively buy some now from your local garden centre and plant for a wonderful summer display. As a rule of thumb, most bulbs should be planted at three times their depth.

It won’t be long until it’s time to start planting hanging baskets, containers and filling your borders with summer bedding, I tend to start mine early next month. Why not get yourself prepared ahead of time by cleaning out all your pots and making sure you have all your hanging basket components. I’ve already stocked up on compost and tidied the covered area at the side of the house to use as my “potting shed”. Last year, knowing at this point that I had to cancel my openings for 2020 I did not invest in as many summer annuals. I am hoping to open later in the year, so hopefully back to normal.

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