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There is no doubt that losing a scrub or tree is a very frustrating moment for every gardener and this is especially true if the plant was costly or if there is a sentimental attachment to the tree or shrub. If this has happened to you then the first thing you to have to do is find out how you can tell whether the tree/shrub is dead or not?

This may sound like an odd question, but there are situations in which they look like they are dead, but they are actually alive. The simplest way to check their condition is to use your nail or a simple penknife to scratch the bark a little bit. If the stem is green then they are still good. A stem that’s brown indicates death. You should perform this procedure on the shoots and close to the roots.


It is very important to understand that there are cases in which even expert gardeners witness the death of their new plants so don’t be too harsh on yourself if this happens to you! However, in most cases, if you take good care of them, they should grow and make progress. Let’s take a quick look at plants in the ground and plants in containers and see why they sometimes fail to grow.

The first category usually fails to grow due to improper moisture in the soil and watering. The soil can be either too dry or too wet. In addition, sometimes people plant their trees and scrubs too deep in the ground and the stem base simply rots. In addition, certain animals like rabbits and rodents can damage the plants.

When it comes to plants in containers, besides the aforementioned problems they can also suffer from frosted roots or from the use of inadequate (too large) containers.

For more advice about looking after your plants, please contact Gardenbusters now.

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Having a garden is a wonderful thing. You can use your garden to enjoy your free time, plant trees and shrubs, exercise and simply take a break from your everyday duties. However, in order to fully enjoy the benefits of having a garden you must take good care of it and this takes time. If you’re looking for an easier life then follow these 5 methods that will help you create a low-maintenance gravel garden.

garden maintenance


#1. Prepare the area

The first thing that you should do is to prepare the area by eliminating all or almost all of the planting located on the borders. If you want to keep some plants, set them aside.

#2. Putting an edge

The next step is focusing on the lawn. You must determine the lawn borders and use the area within the border for planting. In order to mark this area, you will need to highlight the edges. If you skip this step, you will risk injuries from gravel whenever you trim the edges with your mower. Most people choose monoblock strip for the edging. These monoblocks are not big and they look attractive, so they can easily blend in. You need to place them in a mortar base. If everything is done properly, the monoblock will be located under the level of lawn and slightly above the level of gravel, keeping the gravel where it should be. When you edge the gravel area, you can start planting.

#3. Border preparation

Dig slightly over the border in order to bring more air in the soil and to ease your task. It is also a good idea to use fertilisers at this point because using this product later will be much more difficult. At the end, make sure that the soil is even.

#4. Planting borders

Choose the plants that you want to use and group them. By doing this you will get small floral islands and you will still get the visual effects of the gravel.

#5. Use the gravel

The final step is to put the gravel on the soil. Remember that there are different types of gravel, so use the one that you find most attractive.

For more advice about low maintenance gardens, please contact us now.

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Before you hire a gardening company to do some work in your home, you must make sure that you hire the best possible company for doing such a job. The following tips should help you decide in choosing the perfect gardening company to do the work for you.

  • Does the company have proper insurance?

Reliable companies with a good reputation will have full insurance for public liability. This type of insurance covers possible accidental damage, and good companies will have no problems showing you their certificate for insurance either by e-mail or in printed version.

  • Do they have previous references and testimonials?

By checking out the experiences of other people about the business you plan to hire, you will get a general idea about how they work. Always look for references, testimonials, customer complaints or comments about the company. Social platforms are pretty good places to check out the company reviews and form your opinion.

  • Does the company provide a written quotation?

E-mailed or written quotations are very important, so you can be certain about what type of service you will get for your money. A verbal quote is sometimes ok but a written quotation is always better. The purpose of the quotation is for you to see a detailed description about the work that should be done, along with the proposed costs and expenditures.

These are some basic tips to have in mind before hiring a company, although there are many others. Regardless which company you choose, always ask questions and look for their previous work and experience. Reliable companies will always be happy to gladly respond to your questions and clarify things for you.

At Garden Busters we would be happy to show you our insurance certificates, references and testimonials and we will always provide you with a written quotation before commencing any work. Contact us now to discuss your gardening requirements.

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The colours of autumn leaves are very beautiful and many artists use these colours as an inspiration to create paintings, photographs or even songs. However, these leaves will reach the ground sooner or later and for keen gardeners, they can soon start to become a problem. This is the time when people usually start gathering the leaves and try to get rid of them as soon as possible. However, only a small percentage of homeowners are aware of the fact that these autumn leaves can be used more effectively than simply throwing away.


Turn them into compost

Autumn leaves are an ideal addition to the compost heap. They won’t break down very fast, but you can speed up this process by covering the leaves with an old carpet for increased heat and by spreading the leaves in a wider area. You can also cut them in smaller pieces. Autumn leaves are great garden compost that can be used in spring.

Using autumn leaves as mulch

In case you have some winter plants in your garden (winter cabbage, kale etc.) you can shred these leaves and place them in the form of a layer around them. As they slowly break down they will bring the necessary nutrients in the soil and make your winter plants stronger.

Create leaf mould

In case you didn’t know, a leaf mould is a special material that consists of rotting leaves that is placed on top of a soil that is very dense and difficult for the plants to grow on. A leaf mould will soften the soil and make it more fertile.

Use your lawnmower

If you are not a big fan of raking, you can always use your lawnmower. In this way you will practically mow the autumn leaves in the lawn and improve the quality of soil.

For more gardening advice, please contact Garden Busters now.

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Autumn is just as important for your garden as any other season, and we have provided a few vital tips you can use to get your garden ready.



1 Plants that don’t like the season should be moved indoors.

To keep your plants looking fresh and so they can last through the harsher months, consider moving them indoors. Winter comes pretty quickly, so it will give you plenty of time to protect your plants before the colder months come.

2 Protect your plants

For plants that can’t be moved indoors, wrap them in season-proofed materials and prop up stems with sticks so they are as protected as they can be from wind, rain, and snow.

3 Preen, prune, and bin!

Clean up your garden and dead-head your plants. Collect any seeds and harvest any fruits or vegetables. Trim any hedges and trees you might have – especially if you live somewhere known for heavy snow, as this will make it easier for you once bad weather hits.

4 Harvest

Harvesting and trimming your plants allows them to flourish in the winter months, giving you a beautiful garden even in colder weather.

5 Plant

Autumn is the time to plant your spring collection! Get sowing and look forward to when the first buds start to grow in the New Year.

6 Enjoy the last of your summer garden! (Until next year)

Phew, all that work deserves one last look at your flowering plants on a mild day. Grab your camera and take some photos for before and after pictures!

For all your garden maintenance needs, please contact us now.

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Weeds are the bane of every gardener’s life. And the problem multiplies if you do nothing about it and its starts to get out of control. So, here are 5 great tips that will help you control your weeds effectively and make your garden look lush green and properly maintained:

  • Usage of weed killers may be very effective if used at the right time of the year. To make weed killers more effective, you need to use them when the weather conditions are stable. Usually, the time period between March and September is ideal for using weed killer. One reason being that the weeds have increased on the surface area and will absorb the spray and the second being that the spray will not drift away and affect the other plants.

  • After replanting an area when you have cleared the weeds, apply more of the weed killer to the soil in an appropriate amount so that it mixes with the soil and stops further re-growth of the weeds. But make sure that the amount of weed killer used is limited so as not to make the soil completely infertile.

  • If there are climber weeds in your garden, gently unwind them and spray a weed killer like Glyphosate to the affected areas in proper proportions without causing harm to other plants.

  • Make sure you mix and add the proportions of weed killers according to the area you want to use it on. Use hand sprayers if the area is small and concentrated formulas to apply to larger areas.

  • To get the best results, use the weed killer when the soil is moist so that it absorbs the weed killer to the maximum extent providing your garden a long lasting treatment.

For more advice about weed control, please contact Garden Busters now.

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To keep Your Garden In Top Condition This Summer, Please Read The Following Tips:


    1. Keep Mowing – ideally you should be cutting your grass at least once a week during the summer months. Mowing little and often is better than letting it grow for a few weeks and then hacking it down all in one go. If you can, spread your grass clippings over your compost heap in shallow layers. If you dump it all on top in a huge mound then it could turn slimy and ruin the compost underneath.
    1. Watering – you can always expect quite a bit of rain during the British summer but if we get prolonged periods of sunny days it doesn’t mean that your garden has stored up all the previous rain. Keeping your garden watered is essential during the summer. You should give your garden a good soaking at least once or twice a week and this will draw the plant roots deeper into the nutritious soil. If you’ve got hanging baskets and containers these will need watering at least once a day and if it’s hot and windy, we recommend watering them twice a day. If you have a newly laid lawn then we recommend watering it every evening to allow it to flourish.
    1. Dealing With Pests – the warmer weather will also bring out the pests. Greenfly and blackfly love the warmer weather and these can be very damaging for your plants. Keep a look out for insect infestations on your plants and ask your local garden centre about the best products to buy in order to eradicate them.
    1. Protecting Your Produce – if you grow your own fruit and vegetables then you need to keep a close eye on them during the summer months. We recommend that you water regularly and keep picking. If you are growing vegetables in a greenhouse then remember that your greenhouse can get extremely hot in the summer so it makes sense to keep your vegetables shaded on especially hot days. It’s also a good idea to spray the floor of your greenhouse with water in the morning and this will create a humid atmosphere that your vegetables will thrive in. Avoid watering the floor at night because this could attract pests and cause disease.
    1. Feed The Birds – lots of people forget the birds during the summer because they think there’s enough food around for them anyway. If the ground hardens due to prolonged hot weather then birds will actually find it difficult to find food so if you supply some bird feed it will help them. Attracting birds to your garden will also help to keep insect pests down.


Follow the above tips and your garden will thrive this summer. For more gardening advice and to arrange regular garden maintenance please Contact Garden Busters now.


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Perennial plants are great for adding colour and seasonal interest to your garden. Blooming from April to November they will often attract bees and butterflies and also make great cut flowers too. You can use perennials as fillers between shrubs, grow them in containers or plant them to create a beautiful herbaceous border. Herbaceous perennials will return every year and as they mature, they will grow larger, bringing you pleasure for many years to come.


Here are the top 5 perennials for the garden:

  • Lavender – highly fragrant, lavender will attract many bees and butterflies to your garden. They are great for planting in light, sandy soils or growing in patio containers. They will add a great splash of colour to your borders and you can take cuttings for indoor use as well.
  • Rudbeckia – these popular perennials will give you long-lasting flowers similar to daisies which will brighten up your garden in late summer and early autumn. They fit in nicely with other perennials and will grow perfectly in heavy clay soils. They work well as a cut flower too.
  • Geranium – these versatile perennials will grow just about anywhere. Ideal for shaded areas of the garden, geraniums are low maintenance and will provide colour throughout the summer. Geraniums can be used as ground cover or to fill gaps in your borders.
  • Sedum – perfect for late summer and autumn colour. Sedums are tolerant of poor soils, easy to grow and ideal for planting at the front of herbaceous borders.
  • Salvia Nemorosa – this produces beautiful purple flowers and will grow in abundance throughout summer and into autumn. They work well with mixed borders or grown with grasses and are highly attractive to bees and butterflies.

If you’re looking for low garden maintenance planting that will give you pleasure every year, then our top 5 perennials will keep you happy. For more gardening advice please contact Gardenbusters.

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Summer is just about here so it’s time to start doing all those summer jobs in the garden that you’ve been putting off.

Summer jobs

Here is a quick checklist to keep you busy:


  • Sow seeds of perennial plants, winter bedding and biennials outdoors
  • Clip and prune hedges to give them a good shape for the rest of the season
  • Make sure your lawn gets its regular cutting and TLC. Cut the grass using the lowest height on the lawnmower setting and during dry spells, give your lawn a good soak.
  • Apply wood preservative treatment to your fencing, sheds and summer houses
  • Tackle those paving and wall building jobs that you’ve been thinking about
  • Put the last of the summer bedding plants out in June
  • Attend to your bed and border maintenance
  • Cut back any early flowering plants such as delphiniums and lupins to give you displays well into September
  • Keep on top of plant feeding, dead heading, weeding and watering


Jobs for later in summer will include deadheading and regular feeding of roses, removing diseased leaves, taking cuttings of shrubs and the sowing of hardy annual seeds in pots for autumn planting.

There’s always plenty to do in the garden for summer so if you need a helping hand, please give Gardenbusters a call.