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Plant of the Moment

PLANT of the Moment

Plant of the Moment…

Plant of the moment is an initiative from the HTA that highlights month by month great planting ideas and great plants, in order to help you create a garden that is full of colour and interest throughout the year,

Each month will feature reliable and trustworthy plants that are guaranteed to perform well in almost any garden, including many that have received the RHS ‘Award of Garden Merit’.

Plant of the Moment January - Winter Wonderland

January – Winter Wonderland

Add the wow factor to your winter garden with striking plants that look their best right now. Whether you’d like to fill your borders with hardy shrubs covered with fragrant flowers, clad a fence or archway with colour, or plant a small flowering tree to create a focal point, you’ll find a great range of seasonal stunners in garden centres this month.

While a coating of frost or snow creates temporary magical moments, unifying our gardens with its icy frosting, the excitement really starts when it melts away to reveal winter displays full of colour, character and charm.

Plant of the Moment February - Camellia

February – Camellia

Few hardy shrubs signal the end of winter better than camellias, highly valued for their stunning floral displays and fresh, glossy, evergreen foliage. With dozens of varieties available you’ll be spoilt for choice, so pick from camellias in shades of pink, red, white and cream.
Their ultimate size, habit and rate of growth vary immensely too, so consider how much space the camellia will need as it grows. Whether you’d like something that stays small and compact or will grow into a bold shrub or even a flowering hedge or screen, the choice is yours. Camellia flowers vary in size and shape too, and their forms can be divided into six descriptive groups depending on the number of petals and their pattern or arrangement within the flower.

March – Primulas

Plant a rainbow of colour to welcome in spring by packing patio pots and filling flower beds with primulas and polyanthus. These cheerful bedding plants offer great value, flowering their hearts out for weeks on end to brighten your outlook on even the dullest of days.
New varieties are continually being bred offering outstanding garden performance, larger flowers and better resistance to the vagaries of our weather. Although single-coloured flowers are always popular also look out for bicolours, double and rosebud types, plus wonderfully scented new varieties too.

Plant of the Moment April - Maples

April – Maples

Japanese maples are the perfect choice of tree for any small, compact or courtyard garden. Their character and appeal makes them ideal for creating a focal point in your garden, brightening a shaded corner, or elegantly overhanging a pool or water feature.

Many acers are commonly called Japanese maples, but their parents could be derived from several different species including Acer japonicum, Acer palmatum, Acer shirasawanum or others. Among them are some extremely slow-growing forms, with trees remaining a small, manageable size without the need for regular pruning.

May – Herbs

Create your own culinary herb garden that looks almost too good to eat!

Try planting a selection of tasty herbs valued as much for their ornamental appeal as their flavour. From sage to thyme, rosemary to clipped bay and flowering chives, combine herbs valued for their ornamental beauty to produce long-lasting displays as well as regular pickings for the kitchen. There are no hard and fast rules about creating herb gardens, but successful designs often define the space using brick pavers, dividing-up the area with small paths to provide easy access for picking. Go for an informal mix or choose a formal pattern or cartwheel design. As a centrepiece plant a large, shrubby herb such as rosemary or sage, a formally clipped bay tree, or a potted herb arrangement.

Plant of the Moment June - Clematis

June – Clematis

From bold blooms the size of tea plates to delicate nodding bells adorning a garden arch, clematis are versatile and colourful climbers that no garden should be without. Whether left to clamber-up a trellis panel to cover walls and fences or trained over a pergola, clematis are a wonderfully diverse family with varieties to choose for flowers in every season of the year.

Large-flowered hybrids are some of the most impressive, coming into their own during the summer months, and these are joined by daintier flowering varieties of clematis viticella that continue blooming into autumn. Dozens of clematis varieties are available, with new ones being introduced every year, so visit local garden centres and nurseries to pick the ones that appeal. Colours and forms vary widely, with something to suit every colour scheme. Most enjoy their heads in the sun, but some, like pure white ‘Alabast’, will also grow in semi-shade.

Plant of the Moment July - Bring in the Butterflies

July – Bring in the Butterflies

Add a new dimension to your garden displays by not only planting colourful flowers you can enjoy throughout the year, but ones that will bring in the butterflies too. A wide range of bedding plants, perennials, flowering shrubs and bulbs produce the simple, open blooms that butterflies love.

These act like fuelling stations around our gardens for butterflies, moths, bees and other beneficial insects, providing them with the valuable nectar they need to feed on for energy. That’s why the best flowers are often described as nectar plants, and there are hundreds of wonderful plants to choose from to suit virtually any site or soil you have in your garden.

Plant of the Moment August - Grasses

August – Grasses

From dainty Blue Fescue Grass to majestic Miscanthus, ornamental grasses provide texture, character and form unmatched by many other hardy perennials. Their presence develops through the seasons as bright and colourful foliage is joined by graceful swaying flower heads that last well into winter.

In large borders grasses can be planted in bold groups or striking drifts, but many varieties perform well in large patio pots, positioned where their individual shape and arching form can be fully appreciated. Popular grasses for pots include compact Blue Fescue Grass and Slender Sweet Flag ‘Ogon’, or taller varieties of Miscanthus such as the Zebra Grass (Miscanthus ‘Zebrinus’).

Plant f the Moment September - Perennials

September – Perennials

Add fresh excitement to your autumn displays by including a selection of seasonal stunners to flower beds and patio pots. Several hardy perennials have been patiently growing all year, waiting for their turn to take centre stage. And now their time has come to burst into bloom, filling our gardens with vibrant colour.

Japanese anemones are always a favourite. Tall and bold, their simple flowers in shades from pink to white really celebrate the season. They’re adaptable too, growing in sites from full sun to partial shade.

Plant of the Moment October - Berry Trees

October – Berry Trees

Berry-bearing trees come into their own in autumn, creating colourful displays that can last well into winter. From elder berries to rose hips, crab apples to firethorns, the addition of berrying plants adds to a new dimension to any garden, with plants carry fruits and berries through autumn and into winter.

Berrying plants also provide home grown food for hungry birds and wildlife too, enhancing their appeal and value to any garden.

Plant of the Month November - Cornus

November – Cornus

To create a beautiful garden with year-round appeal it’s essential to pick the best plants, and few celebrate the seasons more than colourful cornus. Commonly called dogwoods, these reliable and hardy shrubs provide a luscious leafy backdrop to summer flowers. As a final fanfare their foliage is transformed into a rainbow of colours through autumn before fluttering away to reveal brilliant wand-like stems.

This seasonal transformation is just the start of a host of new planting partnerships that can be enjoyed right through until spring. During winter the brightly coloured stems of dogwoods catch sunlight to create dazzling displays. Small gardens might only have space for a single plant, so position it where the low piercing winter sunlight will shine through, catching stems in its spotlight.

Plant of the Moment December - Holly and Ivy

December – Holly and Ivy

To create a beautiful garden with year-round appeal it’s essential to pick the best plants, and few celebrate the seasons more than colourful cornus. Commonly called dogwoods, these reliable and hardy shrubs provide a luscious leafy backdrop to summer flowers. As a final fanfare their foliage is transformed into a rainbow of colours through autumn before fluttering away to reveal brilliant wand-like stems.

This seasonal transformation is just the start of a host of new planting partnerships that can be enjoyed right through until spring. During winter the brightly coloured stems of dogwoods catch sunlight to create dazzling displays. Small gardens might only have space for a single plant, so position it where the low piercing winter sunlight will shine through, catching stems in its spotlight.