Alan Titchmarsh: TV star’s brilliant tip on pruning roses and plants exposed

The 70-year-old is renowned in the UK for his charming appearances on TV screens and his successful stint presenting the Chelsea Flower Show for more than 30 years. He is often regarded as having reengaged a generation with their back gardens and getting more people back outdoors planting, and enjoying nature. And back in 2009, Mr Titchmarsh exposed a key tip for ensuring that a gardener’s hard work can be enjoyed all through the year.

Speaking to Ebury Reads, he reviewed how to make roses last for as long as they can.

He said: “When you see a rose like this in full bloom you realise why gardens simply can’t do without them, not just for their appearance and their colour, but for their scent as well.

“The trouble is that flower is eventually going to look like this [brown and dying] and then what do you do? Well the answer is simple.

“You cut it off with these single flowers like this you can just take them off with that little tiny bit of stem they’ve got behind them, but what you will also find sometimes they fall off.

“It’s much, much tidier but if the cluster flower grows like these with this great head here which has disappeared then you’ve got to go back much, much further but always make your cut just above a leaf.

“By cutting into a stem, which is at least pencil thickness, you’ll make sure that that bud there, which grows having come from a fatter stem, is much more vigorous and capable of carrying more flowers later on into the year.”

Mr Titchmarsh rose to fame in the early Nineties on BBC talk show ‘Pebble Mill at One’, which would prove to be his breakout success.

He would go on to secure his legacy by appearing on shows such as ‘Gardeners’ World’ and other makeover shows.

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But it was his work engaging the public in getting green fingered while on the iconic BBC show ‘Ground Force’.

And throughout his career he is always sharing the best advice and tips.

In one encounter on the ‘This Morning’ sofa last year, he revealed how to make the most of small gardens.

He said: “I hear people say they haven’t got a big garden but you can get a little trough, you can get multi-purpose compost in it and you can get herbs.

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“You buy them in pots, such as mint, which is very invasive but in troughs who cares. They’re glorious.

“The key with this is to put it outside your back door. We’ve got mint, we’ve got thyme, sage, parsley, chives and basil in a sunny spot right near your kitchen window.

“And even if you don’t end up using them the smell is amazing.”

More recently, the TV legend also called on the public to buy British flowers in a bid to protect the garden industry in the UK from becoming decimated as a result of the coronavirus.

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