Self-seeding plants Allium hollandicum ‘Purple Sensation’ and the Welsh poppy, Meconsopsis cambrica, putting on a colourful display in Fionnuala’s garden earlier this month.  Photograph: Richard Johnson

It’s a funny old business, gardening. We so often start out with the intention of letting nature know who’s boss, only to quickly find ourselves de(...)

Sam Smyth of Urban Plant Life surrounded by the Kentia palm (Howea forsteriana), one of his favourite indoor plants. Photographs: Richard Johnston

It’s not easy being a house plant. Too often, it’s expected to have the endurance skills of a French Foreign legionnaire along with a supernatural (...)

Clarke’s Soaps, handmade in Dublin

I could start off this week’s column with a Grinch-like list of gifts that the nation’s gardeners are hoping not to find under the tree this year ((...)

These baby plants may be of Lilliputian proportions, but they are wonderfully decorative and intensely flavoursome. Photograph: Richard Johnston

Sometimes it’s the little things in life that make all the difference. Take micro leaves (or micro greens or microveg, as they are also known), tho(...)

You know the drill

Alas, allowing for a few notable exceptions (some oriental leaves, onions, aubergines, for example), it’s still too early to sow seed of most vegetabl(...)

 Swiss chard ‘Bright Lights’. Photograph: Richard Johnston

Coming from a family of fiercely competitive kitchen gardeners, August has always been the time of year when we literally put it all on the table, the(...)

 The walled garden of Castle Durrow, County Laois

It’s safe to say that spring – after displaying an altogether shocking tardiness – has finally sprung, Now is the time to get busy sowing, hoei(...)