A robin stakes out its territory in a blackthorn bush
©Pauline Lewis/Getty Images

Clay gardens, robins and dahlias

While shifting my useless garden clay, my namesake, the robin redbreast, appeared

Gaie and Toby Owen on the drinks terrace beside the pond
©Rick Pushinsky

From clay field to a family garden oasis

How my parents’ persistence transformed weed-infested land into the backdrop of our lives

David Austin’s Renaissance Garden of English roses at Albrighton
©David Austin Roses

David Austin and the new English roses

A visit to the master English rose breeder is an education in the principles of producing healthy and vigorous plants

Matthew Wilson at home in Rutland, England, with his grandfather’s pitchfork
©Tom Jamieson

Treasure in the tool shed

The company devoted to collecting and restoring horticulture ephemera — from niblicks to 19th-century flower pickers

Crab apple, wisteria, Chinese lilac and tulips at Hermannshof Gardens
©Hermannshof Gardens

A German garden planted firmly in science

Hermannshof near Heidelberg is a rigorously planned site that doesn’t follow trends — it creates them

The private garden in The Boltons designed by Luciano Giubbilei, photographed by Carl Bengtsson in 2002
©Carl Bengtsson

Shades of Siena in west London

In an expanded extract from his new book, Luciano Giubbilei explains how Tuscany inspired his design for a garden in Chelsea

Robin Lane Fox near his home in Oxfordshire
©Howard Sooley

A love affair with . . . the countryside

After decades of migration into the cities, technological improvements mean people are now heading back the other way

Place your beds: what flowers to plant now

It’s Derby Day and time to decide on soft-leaved decoration that will stay the course this year

‘God’s Own Country — A Garden for Yorkshire’ designed by Matthew Wilson
©Welcome to Yorkshire

Chelsea designer’s window of opportunity

Matthew Wilson explains how a stained-glass window at York Minster inspired his garden at this year’s flower show

Hepaticas floating in a water bowl in Ashwood Nurseries’ display at Chelsea
©Andrea Jones

Inside story on Chelsea Flower Show

While the designers’ show gardens attract all the headlines, the real floral highlights can be found indoors

Chelsea Flower Show: pick of the products

A selection of some of the products on offer at the event, from the world’s most exclusive garden twine to a shepherd’s hut

How to ape the guerrilla gardeners

Chelsea Fringe Festival celebrates community gardening and horticultural stunts across the world, the quirkier the better

London’s lost river at Chelsea Flower Show

Designer Jo Thompson’s garden at this year’s event pays homage to the Westbourne, a river that runs under the showground itself

Philadelphia’s ‘Badlands’ turned green

Pennsylvania Horticultural Society has used profits from its flower show to carry out extensive planting in neglected urban areas

Is Chelsea Flower Show too . . .  showy?

This year’s headline-grabbing gardens feature anti-slavery messages, oak ‘metaphors’ and motorised hedges

Russell Page’s garden at Villar Perosa

The landscape gardener’s classic near Turin continues to thrive thanks to an assistant who also worked with Roberto Burle Marx

Exploring new British ‘terroir-tories’

An unpredictable climate hasn’t deterred investment or ingenuity among winemakers in the UK

How Welsh wine is wooing connoisseurs

Commercial viticulture barely existed in Wales 30 years ago but today its vineyards are winning international prizes

One-fifth of plant species faces extinction

Kew survey shows 2,000 new plants found in the past year

Slideshow: The flowers to see in 2016

A selection of the best specimens to look out for at this year’s event

London’s hidden green spaces

Open days at gardens in and near the capital offer the chance to pick up horticultural tips and enjoy the hospitality too

Great gardens in literature

Plants have long been entwined with literature, from symbols of romance and sexuality to political metaphor

How do your children grow?

‘Bug hotels’, stink lilies and sunflower-growing contests are just some of the ways to instil in youngsters a love of nature and plants

New York Botanical Garden turns 125

The garden is celebrating an important anniversary but it remains focused on the future with new shows and education projects

Clematis keeps on spreading

Old favourites, newcomers, climbers or sprawlers? With so many to choose from, here is a guide to my favourites

Parasitic plants with a role to play

From the world’s largest (and smelliest) flower to the tiny yellow rattle which can help meadows to thrive

Alternative homes for alpine plants

There is no need to build mini-mountains for plants that can thrive just as well in containers and everyday environments

Lovely shrubberies give life to gardens

Mahonias from China, magnolias from New Zealand and mock orange from Mexico offer colourful new ideas

Sydney’s Royal Botanic Garden 200 years on

The garden is preparing to celebrate its bicentenary, having had to overcome many challenges, both budgetary and biological

The botanist who invented arboretums

Victorian botanist John Claudius Loudon coined the term and pioneered a style of gardening using exotic woodland

The night the badgers came for my tulips

As an entire crop falls victim to uninvited guests, the search begins for a new anti-brock strategy

How to create a beautiful garden

Designing an attractive landscape requires an understanding of topography, climate and history — as well as a love of hard work

Voltaire’s ‘Candide’ — for gardeners

What can the 1759 satire teach us about gardening, the good life and the value of place and belonging?

Two flowers that are picture-perfect

Chrysanthemums and dahlias are well represented at the Royal Academy’s latest show and are also the stars of garden borders

How Japanese knotweed became a global pest

How a single specimen introduced into the west as an exotic novelty became a plant invader that can destroy buildings

Gardeners on top of the world

A gathering of enthusiasts celebrated Vietnamese wonders in the wilds of Washington and an unusual garden in northern Norway

How US growers were put in the picture

Designs grew more lavish as printing technology advanced resulting in colourful images of produce and ‘Vegetable People’

The luck of the iris

Newer varieties of this superb flower were the stars of the RHS’s early spring show this year

The ‘rocket’ plant that took off

Native to the Canary Islands, these tottering giants can also be grown in far cooler environments

A lily goes a long way

The flowers are easily grown in pots that can be transplanted, tubs and all, into bare patches to brighten up late-summer gardens

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