Monty Don shares ‘most effective method’ for protecting plants

Gardeners' World: Monty Don advises on pruning lavender

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The Gardeners’ World lead host also gave a masterclass in making leafmould and reflected on the gardening year. Earlier this month, Monty suggested viewers should clean their greenhouses to prepare them for wrapping with bubble wrap and insulate them over winter.

This is exactly what Monty has done with his own greenhouse. The gardening expert, 67, said this does a couple of things.

He said: “This does two things. Obviously, it protects the plants, but also it dramatically reduces the cost of heating.

“This is bubblewrap we’ve had for about six or seven years and it comes out every year and it’s held in place simply by bamboo canes.

“We’ve found this is actually the most effective method, it is very simple, but it works.”

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Monty shared a similar technique he used inside his larger greenhouse. This greenhouse is larger than his other one so can’t be completely covered with bubblewrap.

Instead, he created a “hot box” to protect specific plants. He explained: “This is a hot box, and it’s created from fleece and bubble wrap, and clothes pegs.

“So you can see if I undo the clothes pegs, what we have is a little area that is bubble wrapped against the glass and across the top so light can get in.

“Then we’ve got a double layer of fleece just folded over a cane hanging down and we can close it up with the clothes pegs.

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“This will just raise the temperature up a few degrees and that means that plants like the salvias, like citrus, if you want to, maybe even bananas can go in there.

“They’ll be nice and snug in the winter. And if you do have to heat this particular area, you’re doing it from a higher base and that will save you a lot of money.

“And of course the beauty is all this can be packed away and reused year after year.”

In the Paradise Garden, Monty has a structure called the bus shelter which is a peaceful place from spring through until October.

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However, in the winter months, the bus shelter is not used at all. So Monty decided to insulate it so it could be used as storage for a certain range of plants.

He said: “So what we’ve done is build a framework and then line that with this thick insulating board and then it becomes a really good storage place for plants like citrus.

“The biggest mistake with citrus when you’re storing them is to bring them into the house. It’s too warm and too dry.

“What they like is cool, humid air and quite dark and then they go dormant and you don’t water them.

“With enough light with the doors open and all but the coldest days to give them the light they need, they will be fine.

“Any shed will do the job. Use your sheds to store plants in. If you insulate them, you will barely have to hat them and that will save you a lot of money and be great for the plants.”

On the latest episode of Gardeners’ World, gardening expert Carol Klein joined a special autumn colour tour at the National Arboretum in Gloucestershire.

An indoor gardener also shared their passion for terrariums.

Meanwhile, in north Somerset, viewers saw a spectacular autumnal display from seasonal produce.

Gardeners’ World can be streamed on BBC iPlayer.

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