I am just back from a week on the beautiful island of Rhodes and although I am always amazed by the Bougainvillea out there, I was most interested in the Olive trees and the groves I visited.

In Scotland, an Olive tree may or may not last a winter and are really only bought to look decorative. In Rhodes, that is most certainly not the case, I saw trees that were more than 2000 years old on my visit! The wood on these old trees is amongst the hardest in the world and the colours through it make great looking objects.

I was surprised to learn just how many olive trees there are on the island and just how many families spend a fortnight or so in October or November picking the olives from their own trees and making fantastic extra virgin olive oils, quite possibly the best tasting in the world.

Holidays are great, but I was equally delighted to come home to my own garden to see what nature had done in my absence; my hydrangea Paniculata has continued to bloom and is looking stunning.

My greatest delight was to see the colour on my Japanese anemones - I always think that its bloom is the most graceful start to the Autumn. The pink flowers from my Prince Heinrich I planted nearly 5 years ago are really starting to fill out. I would recommend this plant to everyone; it has never let me down. Other varieties I would suggest you may add to your own garden are ‘Bressingham Glow’ (very similar to ‘Heinrich’) and the wonderful white flowered ‘Whirlwind’. These fantastic flowers will add some sunshine to the perhaps dull Autumn days ahead.

Happy gardening.


This is a superb herbaceous geranium that is not only plant of the week but plant of the milennium! It flowers prolifically for months on end over summer with the most striking deep purple/blue flowers with a pale white centre – simply dead head spent blooms regularly to prolong flowering. It loves most soil conditions and is really hardy, even in Scottish climates. It is well known for attracting bees, beneficial insects, butterflies and other pollinators due to its pollen rich flowers. It can grow to about 30cm in height with a spread of about half a metre so it loves to be positionedtoward the front of your borders – and is equally happy in a sunny spot as a shady one. An all round fabulous addition to any garden – a real delight.

Colin has been working in the gardening industry for over 30 years and owns seven Garden Centres across central Scotland and is passionate about Scottish plants.