Patrick Quinn

103 Flips | 4 Magazines | 2 Followers | @quinnboy | Keep up with Patrick Quinn on Flipboard, a place to see the stories, photos, and updates that matter to you. Flipboard creates a personalized magazine full of everything, from world news to life’s great moments. Download Flipboard for free and search for “Patrick Quinn”

Rewired Rose Plant Becomes Living Cyborg

Photo illustration: Linköping University“Every rose has its thorn,” the song goes, but not every rose has electronic wires running through its body. …

Engineering

Your garden probably has 2,673 species of plants, fungi and animals in it

Wildlife gardening has come a long way in the 30 years since Chris Baines built the Chelsea Flower Show’s first wildlife garden in 1985.<p>Along the way, we can pick out some key studies that have revolutionised the way we think about wildlife in gardens. One was certainly the Sheffield Bugs project, …

Wildlife

How to grow poppies

Bright and blowsy, blue or plumed, poppies have great charisma. Even their name is suitably evocative.<p>What's more, many of these cheerful plants are uncomplicated to grow. According to Christopher Grey-Wilson, in his book, Poppies, the name may orginate from the sound made by chewing the seeds, or …

Can trees really change sex?

The revelation that the UK’s oldest tree is showing signs of switching sex has sparked much excitement in the world of horticultural science. The Fortingall yew in Perthshire, Scotland, having apparently spent 5,000 years as a male tree, has suddenly produced female berries. So what is going …

Plants

DIY: 7 Best Natural Mosquito Bite Remedies

I’m a romantic, and so at the risk of facing commenter-wrath, I’m going to say it: The season’s first mosquito bite isn’t such a bad thing. It’s how …

No-dig gardening: a better way to grow vegetables?

Growing vegetables using the no-dig method reaps great rewards<p>New year resolutions usually contain good intentions and there are few truly more positive pastimes than vegetable gardening. Charles Dowding has made it even more worthwhile with his new book Veg Journal. He cuts a path through the …

Thorny problems: is it practical to dig up an apple tree?

Our gardening agony aunt offers advice about how to move an apple tree, deal with a weedy path and aid an ailing dogwood<p><b>Apple 'appenings</b><p><i>We are hoping to move house early this year, and wondered how practical it was to dig up a</i> Discovery' <i>apple tree, planted at our current address in 2005? It is …

For gardeners, holly is more than just Christmas cheer

The traditional Christmas holly berries are more versatile than you think<p>Holly is festive, but definitely not just for Christmas. Working on a garden in Merton, near Wimbledon, a few weeks ago, I realised that John Innes (responsible for the famous formula for composts) was, like me, completely …

A Georgian garden at the British library

A garden celebrating the Georgian era has just been unveiled at the British Library, complete with a cherub of the infant Prince George<p>The Tudors brought power struggles and houses. The Victorians did infrastructure. But the Georgians brought style: a classically imbued elegance that is still …

The history behind heathers

I am never happier than when roving over one of our sublime heathlands in search of flowers. I love the wide open spaces, with their "space and freedom and the friendliness of growing things", as Michael Home so eloquently wrote of the Breckland heaths in 1946. I love the floral combinations – …

Warm the cooking pot with veg from a winter garden

Don’t be deterred by the chilled air outside; productive beds in colder months will keep your soil – and stomach – happy<p>Winter vegetables are the prime reason to venture out into a bitterly cold garden. Eye-catching rows of <b>sprouts</b>, <b>leeks</b> and <b>cabbages</b> highlighted by the low winter light and frost …

Not all is rosy in the garden as Alan Titchmarsh throws in the trowel

It's horticultural hysteria as Alan Titchmarsh bows out of presenting the Chelsea Flower Show for the BBC after 30 years<p>When TV’s head gardeners gather to sip champagne at the Intercontinental on London’s Park Lane a week on Wednesday, one topic will dominate conversation. As well-known faces …

Work begins on Newby Hall's famous historic border

The 1920s herbaceous double border at Newby Hall, thought to be the longest in Western Europe, is to be completely replanted<p>The famous double herbaceous border at Newby Hall in North Yorkshire, thought to be the longest in Western Europe, is to be completely replanted in a two year-renovation …

Alys Fowler: lemony snippet

I bought my lemon tree from Lidl. Well, haggled would be more accurate. My friend Birgit negotiated a discount for what was essentially a stick with no leaves. I paid a fiver and was pleased as punch, but the rest of the queue was confused: it really did look dead.<p>Lemons are far tougher than they …

Autumn colours in the garden to light my fire

We are caught between two seasons. Look up and the branches are mostly bare, the last of the summer leaves tilted against the rush of water-heavy cloud. Look down at your feet and the pavements have lost their rustle, what piles of leaves remaining pushed into wet corners and drained of colour. I …

The best tree varieties to plant for the future

Disease and global warming are damaging many favourite old trees. Which ones should we be planting for future generations?<p><b>Carpinus betulus 'Frans Fontaine’</b><p>An attractive medium-sized deciduous tree, to 50ft/15m tall when fully grown, with a compact pyramidal habit. It is easy to grow and suitable …

Coppicing: ancient techniques provide a cutting edge

Want to create space and colour and harvest your own firewood? Coppicing trees and shrubs is well worth the effort<p>When I start coppicing trees and shrubs, despite the fact that I have piles of recently felled limbs all around me I still feel I am being creative. A large hazel or sweet chestnut tree …

Gardening

Thorny problems: how can I get rid of honey fungus?

Our gardening agony aunt, Helen Yemm, solves your gardening problems. This week: wallflowers, tree peonies and pyracantha<p>I don’t know who gets more of my sympathy, emailer Judy Karyl Kitsell, anxious to make sure that an elderly Liriodendron (tulip tree) in her large, tree-filled garden does not …

Thorny problems: why isn't my clematis flowering?

Our gardening agony aunt, Helen Yemm, solves your gardening problems. This time: a clematis in pots and moving autumn crocuses<p><b>Complications of a clematis in pots</b><p>Patricia Dawson has a problem with a Clematis alpina ‘Foxy’ that she is growing up a bamboo wigwam in a pot. She sent me a picture, taken …

Edible hedges: grow a vertical allotment

Edible hedges can be used like any other – the problem is knowing which combination of flavours, fruits and flowers work best for you<p>As we all know, the primary purpose of a hedge is to allow us to go about our business unseen, while letting just enough sound through to catch any gossip or …

Gardens: roses on their own roots

Next time you buy a rose, look at the bulge low on the stem. It may not seem like much, but this lump, known as the graft union, tells a story. Almost every rose sold in the UK is grafted; breeders join the stem of one rose, the scion, to the roots of a vigorous species rose, the rootstock, until …

The internet is wiping out gardening books so I’m giving up, says author, 85

Horticulture books could become a thing of the past as Britain's best selling gardening author warns the internet is killing off the industry<p>The internet is killing off gardening books, claims Britain’s bestselling horticulture writer.<p>Dr David Hessayon said he pitied new writers because the …

Gardener's Christmas countdown: 24 tasks for December

With 24 days until you hang up the gardening gloves, here are 24 ways green thumbs can make the most of December<p>As the days lengthen, the cold strengthens" is a saying endorsed by many winters. In January, our gardens may well be frosted and frozen, but in these often beautiful and milder days that …

How to grow: Nerine bowdenii

Nerine bowdenii is a breathtaking plant, especially on a dull autumn day.<p>With its tall scapes, terminated by a loose umbel of five to 10 trumpet-shaped, shocking-pink flowers, it must surely be the most exotic autumn-flowering bulb. Each flower has six narrow perianths with flamboyant wavy edges, …

Top tips on how (and when) to plant a shrub

Expert advice on the best way to plant a shrub, plus the best new plants available for your garden<p>"As far as possible, all deciduous plants should be planted after the leaves have changed colour, but just before they fall," wrote W. J. Bean in 1914 in the first edition of his monumental book Trees …

Berries from heaven

It's been a good year for berries, with a summer's worth of sunshine, water when we have needed it and a mild start to autumn so the birds didn't go hungry. Berries, hips and haws are every bit as good as autumn-colouring foliage and better still in combination.<p>When I arrived here I planted a …

Top 10 apples to grow in your garden

Henry Chevallier Guild, eighth generation of the apple-growing Aspall cider family says, Britain has one of the best climates in the world for apples. In the 19th century we used to make the most of that, with 2,500 different varieties listed in the UK, but that's now declined to only 12 that …

Nut trees: are they all they're cracked up to be?

As well as yielding tasty treats, nut trees provide sweet-smelling wood and make a fine focal point in any garden<p>Nut trees are a productive bunch. Most provide a rich source of protein, fibre and minerals; some, such as the almond, produce fragrant blossom and cosmetic oils; others, such as the …

How to choose an apple tree for your garden

When I finally had a garden big enough for apple trees, the 18th-century variety 'Orleans Reinette' was one of the first I planted. Why? Because apple enthusiast Edward Bunyard told me to. "This magnificent fruit cannot be too highly recommended," he raves in his Handbook Of Hardy Fruits, published …

Sarah Price: breathing new life into an old garden

When taking on her grandparents' cherished plot, Chelsea gold medal winning designer Sarah Price had to find ways to turn treasured memories into her own space<p>Taking a fresh look at a familiar place is one of the hardest challenges in gardening. I recently moved from central London to South Wales, …