The moth orchid or phalanopsis, and the boat orchid or cymbidium are two of the most popular varieties as they are cheap to buy, often less than a bunch of flowers and will continue to flower for several months.  Orchids are one of the two most numerous plant families as Hester Macdonald reports.

Miniature garden designs in cups and even solar lamps are a new trend in container gardening.  The plants are easy to find in any garden centre, are cheap and easy to take care of requiring very little water and very occasional feeding.  Hester Macdonald from the Swiss Gardening school has been finding out more about these tiny designs ideas.

Hydroponics have long been used to grow plants without soil, and there is even documented evidence from the 1600s which show experiments on spearmint.  However, there is a perception that they are messy and difficult meaning they have largely been resisted by the public.  Hester Macdonald spoke to a couple who hope to change all that.

One of the things which can be difficult when you move to a new region is knowing what to do and when in the garden. The plants may be unfamiliar, the weather weird and you can’t ask your neighbours because they don’t speak the same language. Tara Lissner, Director of the Swiss Gardening School has advice to guide you through any questions you may have.

It is often the case for garden designers that they spend so much time working on other people’s gardens that their gardens can get forgotten. British trained garden designer Hester McDonald got some ideas for a shady bed from Rosy Hardy, founder of Hardy’s plants.