It’s all a matter of balancing the outrageous show-offs with the quiet achievers, says Jo Arnell.

Garden borders can be tricky to get right. ‘I’ve looked at borders from both sides now,’ Joni Mitchell might have sung, had she been keener on gardening. If you’ve looked at yours in all weathers, in all seasons, from all angles and still somehow, you really don’t know borders at all, have one last look before chucking in the trowel.


Melianthus major is a surprisingly hardy exotic architectural anchor plant


Phlomis russelliana is a herbaceous structural plant

TEST Phormiums provide striking border structure

Phormiums provide striking border structure

TEST Yew topiary focal points at Great Dixter

Yew topiary focal points at Great Dixter

In the Night Garden

Jo Arnell explains how to make the most of your outdoor space once darkness falls Some enchanted evening you may see me outside – mainly searching for slugs in the garden, because the cool hours of night are when they...

Contain your excitement

Jen Stuart-Smith discusses how to get creative with your pots and planters My love affair with plants started with houseplants when I was a child. As my bedroom windowsill overflowed – resulting, occasionally, in waking up with compost under my...

More than just a pretty face

Jen Stuart-Smith explores the multiple uses of some easy-to-grow garden favourites When you grow flowers for their beauty, shape and colour it can be easy to forget all the other qualities they have to offer. Some are edible, others provide...