I do love a hanging basket. There really is no better way of adding extra pops of colour than with an array of vibrant flowers and shrubs, flourishing in hanging baskets, dotted around the garden. I’ve always found a lovely selection to choose from at my local garden centre. But the plants only ever last […]


How to Bring Life to a Shaded Area of Your Garden with a Fanfare of Colour

30 March 2019

I’ve really enjoyed seeing my garden being slowly teased back to life with a fanfare of colour as the days get longer and the sun finally makes an appearance. The delicate white damson blossom mingled with the magnificent vibrant yellow forsythia contrasting with the glorious pink of the azaleas and the tiny dark cobalt blue […]

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How We Transformed our Children’s Playhouse into a Teenagers’ Den

11 March 2019

10 years ago my husband designed and built a playhouse for our then 7 year old son and 5 year old daughter. It had an upstairs den with a ladder. There were two separate rooms. We filled it with toys and cushions and dressing up clothes. We stuck pictures on the walls. We had visions […]

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Garden Shed of the Year 2018: Proof a Shed is Not Just a Home for your Wellies, Flower Pots and Lawnmower

2 October 2018

When is a black cab not a black cab? When it’s a garden shed. No, this isn’t a really dreadful Christmas cracker joke. This is a runner up in the Cuprinol Shed of the Year Competition 2018.   It just goes to show that with a quirky imagination and a spot of creativity, the sky […]

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Annabeth, Emmy, Grace and William Love Their Playhouses. So Do We.

6 September 2018

Annabeth, Emmy, Grace and William love their playhouses. And we love what their clever Mummies and Daddies have done with their playhouses. It’s always lovely to hear from happy customers. And it’s been even lovelier to hear from these happy customers and their children telling us about the fun they’ve been having in their playhouses […]

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Create the Best Nightspot in Town with My Outdoor Summer Party Checklist

18 May 2018

Are you planning a shindig, hooley, kegger, shebang, shivoo, wingding…or just a plain old garden party? Good company, good food, good weather. You really can’t beat a good garden party, whatever time of year. So I thought I’d help you get the party started with a few ideas for those outdoor party essentials that will […]

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Forget Pepperoni. Wow your Friends With Beer Battered Fried Calamari Pizza in Your Outdoor Pizza Oven.

21 April 2018

Did you know that 350 slices of pizza are eaten every second? And that Oxford is the city that consumes the most pizza in the UK? With pizza ovens fast becoming the alfresco dining experience of choice and the trusted barbecue taking a back seat, I thought it might be fun to find out some […]

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Carrot & Ginger Splash Followed by a Pepper & Grapefruit Cocktail, Add a Cherry, and That’s Your 5-a-Day Sorted!

12 April 2018

All this talk of Michelle Obama’s aspirations for the good life with her 1,100 square foot vegetable ‘patch’ in the Whitehouse back garden inspired my husband and me to come up with various uses for vegetables the other night – as you do when the kids have gone to bed. And it was then I suddenly had a eureka moment.

Now, before I let you in on my fabulous idea you may see a theme developing following my earlier fruit picking blog. But suffice it to say this is my concession to healthy living and a very good one it is too I might add!

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How to Cure your Clay Chiminea to Prevent Cracking

10 April 2018

It’s important you season or cure your new chiminea before use. Curing a clay chiminea hardens the clay, helping prevent cracks forming when it is being exposed to high temperatures. Step One Put a few inches of sand in the bottom of your chiminea and build up a small fire slowly using balls of paper. […]

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Bailey’s Dipped Toasted Marshmallows. One Good Reason to Have a Chiminea! My Guide to Choosing the Right Chiminea for You

8 April 2018

The ambience from the glimmering light, the warmth radiating from the flickering flames, the marshmallows dripping in Baileys, ready to toast…now that’s the perfect setting for a summer’s evening in the garden. And that’s why you need a chiminea. So, What is a Chiminea? In a nutshell, a chiminea is a free-standing, open-fronted fireplace with […]

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