Gardening: Weekend Work

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The Independent Online
Having pruned your jasmine, buddleia, climbing roses, dogwoods and late-flowering clematis (The Independent, 21 February), turn your attention to the wisteria. This should have been half-pruned last summer, when any growths that you did not want to tie in should have been cut back by half. Now it is time to finish the job. Cut back all spare tendrils, leaving only two pairs of buds at the base of the new growth. Without this severe pruning, wisteria is apt to get stuck in leafing mode.

Mulch the ground where lily of the valley and Solomon's seal grow, with well-rotted compost. This is more easily done before the new shoots are through the ground than afterwards. Mushroom compost, a by-product of the mushroom-growing industry, is excellent for jobs such as this, and is friable and weed-free.

Prune and train ornamental vines such as Vitis coignetiae and 'Brant', growing on walls and pergolas. On pergolas, you can wrap the long growths round the poles, securing them with soft string. On walls, you should train out the growths so that they do not cross over each other, fixing the stems at intervals with galvanised vine eyes.

Hoe gently between rows of winter-planted garlic, to loosen soil that has got beaten down and sour during the heavy rain of the last couple of months. Do the same between early rows of broad beans. Feed if necessary, with an all-round fertiliser such as Growmore.

Sow seed of herbaceous perennials such as lupins, delphinium, statice, thalictrums, primroses (I've just sown an old-fashioned mix of primroses called 'Cottage Pastels'), violas and pansies.

Repot indoor plants such as asparagus fern, aspidistra, and succulents of all kinds, giving them, if possible, a pot one size larger than the one they were previously growing in.

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