Spring is finally on its way and March is the perfect time to plant shrubs, roses and climbers, both pot-grown and bare-rooted.
The Magnolia Stellata is one of the smallest Magnolias, growing slowly to the size of a shrub and needing no special conditions, so is suitable for most gardens. It puts on a fantastic show of large, white or pink lightly-scented flowers in early spring before its leaves open.
Other old faithfuls flowering at this time of year are Forsythias with their abundance of spiky yellow flowers, and Camellias, spectacular evergreens with glossy foliage with blooms in every shade of pink, red and white. Once it has finished flowering the attractive glossy foliage is a useful background to other plants that flower later on in the season. If you don’t yet have some of these versatile and low-maintenance shrubs in your garden you might want to plant them.
Thinking ahead to what we’ll be enjoying in early summer, do you have room for another English Rose? We recommend Darcey Bussell – a shrub rose bred by David Austin – compact bushy growth with deep crimson rosettes which flower freely, repeats well and, most importantly, has a delightful fragrance.
And for a reliable climber, there are many varieties of Clematis that will keep going right through summer into early autumn. One of our favourites is Sieboldiana – gorgeous single white flowers which are offset by deep purple stamens. The flowers appear in late spring or summer amongst the semi-evergreen foliage. It grows to about 2.5m so is excellent for a container or to weave up and through a wall shrub.