Gardens: what to do this week
Grow ‘Jewels of the Desert’, cultivate coriander, follow the Plant Messiah.
If you’re looking for a colourful, drought-resistant summer pot-filler, delosperma is a great choice. Its daisy-like flowers in bold colours sprinkled over succulent leaves keep coming from spring to the first frosts. New varieties ‘Wheels of Wonder’ and ‘Jewels of the Desert’ offer improved flower size and reliability. Delosperma is a hardy perennial, with a major caveat – it hates winter wet, so place under cover come autumn. Height and spread 12cm x 20cm.
August is your last chance to sow coriander, parsley and chervil this year. All three can be started in ground where you’ve cleared away other veg, or in containers. They should crop well into autumn – especially if covered with a cloche – and bolt less readily than earlier sowings. Realseeds.co.uk has a strain of lemon-scented coriander if you want to try something new.
Kew horticulturist Carlos Magdalena is a modern-day plant hunter with an extraordinary knack for saving rare plants. His new book The Plant Messiah (published by Viking) is the story of his trips to remote regions in search of endangered species – perfect reading matter for the holidays.