For centuries, lilac has been prized as a cut-flower. Photograph: Richard Johnston

What is it about a lilac in full bloom that so touches the heart? The poet and essayist Walt Whitman called this woody plant’s intensely perfumed flow(...)

Colour groupings make for better borders

They say you never forget your first love. For me, it was perennials. After a childhood of sullen rockeries, squat conifers and dreary heather beds, a(...)