Category Archives: Garden

Shaun chooses his favourite products in Presenter Picks

Garden, Shaun's One To Watch

Hello again and welcome to my regular gardening blog

I hope you are all well and enjoying our ‘rather average’ weather!

I was out in the garden quite a lot last week as my brother and his family came to stay with us for his 50th birthday so I wanted to make sure the garden looked its best which it really did. I treated myself to an outdoor heater for the undercover seated area by the side of the house so we were all able to sit outside for longer on an evening and it actually was really nice (I may think differently when the electric bill comes in though!)

This weekend on Ideal World is PRESENTER PICKS weekend where our presenters get to choose some of their favourite products and ask the buying team to get our viewers a really special deal. Naturally I have chosen gardening as some of mine and we have our professional compost back in the big 80 litre single bag for just 9.99. I also have a second gardening Presenter Pick which is the gorgeous set of patio Clematis in the serenity pots at a very special price. I love Clematis and have a massive one in flower right now in the garden, the ones on the show are a lovely compact variety that flower for longer and ideal for smaller spaces. Please join myself and Peter on Sunday between 11am and 1pm to find out more.

My other Presenter Picks are the Cushion Walk shoes which I have on Saturday at 9am and 12pm. Now I hear what you are thinking – ladies shoes seems a slightly odd choice for me as one of my personal favourites? The reason why I picked them is actually for my mum as she absolutely loves them and now has several pairs (here she is with one of her many favourites). Hopefully she is going to call into the live show too!

I must dash as I have loads of hanging baskets to make up today and quite a few planters to fill and the weather looks great outside for a change so I intend to make the most of it

See you over the weekend!
Shaun xxx

Fayon’s Blooming Garden!


Well, after being back in my thermals for last week’s Garden Bargains show, I am relieved to hear that the sun is making a come-back in time for the bank holiday…Yaaaay!!!

I must say though the rain has been wonderful for the new editions in my garden 🙂 My 100 treated Freesia Bulbs are popping out gorgeous green shoots and my 8 rose plants are positively thriving!Fayon's RosesEarlier this month whilst presenting a Garden Bargains show with Angela, I was transported back to my holiday in Greece with a fragrant Lilac plant we had on the show. The fragrance was amazing and I just had to order one for outside my back door so I will always be able to catch a whiff of that gorgeous blossom. I couldn’t believe the price and how securely the packaging was when it arrived.

On the show were also one of my favorite fruits, blueberries! The blueberry collection – pack of3 varieties were our ‘Edible of the month’. I absolutely love them and like to include them in my ‘power juices’ that I whiz up with my Nutribullet. They are packed with fibre, potassium, folate, vitamin C and B6 which all support your health. I just had to get some for my garden, I’ve never made blueberry muffins before, it’s the treat I like when I’m travelling on trains from London to Peterborough, once these grow, I’ll definitely be giving it a go!

Blueberry plants

I also popped the twin pack 40L handy premium professional compost into my basket, an absolute must for all around my garden and the fact I didn’t have to lug it into the back of my car is great, I can save my strength for fun in my garden with my family instead.

Don’t miss Hayley and Angela’s Double Discount Garden Bargains show this Sunday at 11am for your Plant of the month.

Shaun celebrates 9 years of Garden Bargains

Garden, Shaun's One To Watch

Hello again and a massive welcome as ever to my weekly gardening blog.

This weekend is a very special one for Ideal World gardeners as we are celebrating Garden Bargains 9th Anniversary. We have a very special Pick of the Day launching  @ 9PM on Friday where we’re giving you a pair of Pink Standard Oleanders and a pair of 11 inch Tulipa Silver Planters for just £29.99 plus buy any plant, pot or compost until 9pm Sunday and pay just £3.99 P&P per item AND receive free Sweet Pea seeds. There’s lots of extra special offers throughout the weekend and during our regular 2 hour show on Sunday from 11pm so I really hope you can join us.

This week I have had my mum come to stay to help me with the garden. She is 76 and has quite a few aches and pains but nothing serious. She is very lucky to still be, on the whole, very agile and able to do quite a lot of gardening – in fact her own garden looks amazing at the moment.

The weather was slightly colder than we thought it would be so mum had to wear one of my old jumpers so is not looking her usual stylish self in the photos! She did a lot of weeding and general tidying up for me though and used one of my heavy duty pots that I often talk about on the show to collect all the rubbish in. We spent the evening watching a film with a bottle of wine and the left over Easter chocolates so that was really nice.

I haven’t planted up any of my Summer hanging baskets or pots yet but that begins next week. I also have my brother Martin and his family staying next week as he has his 50th birthday so I must make sure everything looks really good for his stay.

See you on Ideal World over the weekend when I really hope you can join us to celebrate Garden Bargains 9th Anniversary.

All the best
Shaun x

Shaun’s back in his garden

Garden, Shaun's One To Watch

Hello everyone or should I say “Hola” as I’ve just got back from my mini break in Spain!

Shaun in SpainMy partner Jay and I stayed in a little place called Sitges which is around a 30 minute train journey from Barcelona and really beautiful. It is very quaint with some lovely beaches, bars and restaurants and also very friendly so we both had a great time and even made some new friends! The weather was perfect for me, around 20 degrees every day so I have come back with a bit of a tan and feeling great – all ready for our big Easter Event launching this Thursday on Ideal World at 8PM.

Shaun at home with his own Mediterranean gardenLike most keen gardeners I love observing all the Mediterranean plants and flowers on my holidays and it’s amazing how many plants I spotted in Spain that I have growing in my garden and  greenhouse. The pictures show me next to a giant agave and also some bird of paradise plants, one of my absolute favourites. I’ve been growing one for years in my greenhouse which has never flowered but I’m hoping that might change if we have a great Summer this year. I also have an agave growing in a pot which I fell into once after one two many drinks and it was not a pleasant experience!

I gather I missed out on some great weather however too in the UK while as I was away with temperatures of 20 degrees+ which is incredible for April. I couldn’t believe how much had changed in the garden during the few days I was away and it all needs a good tidy up again. I actually have presenter Joanne and her family coming to stay on Good Friday so I definitely need to make sure the garden looks good by then as we like to compete a little when it comes to who has the greenest fingers!

I am back on the gardening show this Sunday at 11am with some brilliant Easter offers so I really hope you can all join me. We’ve got some exciting deals on our Jumbo Trailing Fuchsias, Pack of 3 Blueberry Collection and a Pair of 2L Pink and Blue Patio Clematis – they’re not to be missed!

Thanks as ever for reading my latest blog and I will see you this weekend!

Happy gardening
Shaun x

Shaun in the Garden – last week of March

Garden, News, Shaun's One To Watch

Hello again all my gardening friends and welcome to my weekly gardening blog.

I’ve had a lovely time this week on my days off and have got quite a lot done as there has been a lot of sunshine around. I’ve managed to dead head all my baskets and tubs – I have about 40 of these so it’s quite a big job. I’ve also fed all my plants in the greenhouse, done lots of weeding and cut the lawns so quite a productive time in general.

It’s amazing how quickly the garden is changing now we are getting some warmer weather and we have changed the clocks. One of my favourite spring flowering trees has got to be magnolias. I have two different varieties in my garden and they have just started to come into flower over the past couple of days and look magnificent! I love the way they burst into full flower before producing their leaves, it really allows the flowers to be prominent and proud.

Now before I forget, don’t forget to put these dates in your diary for this weekend, my gardening shows at midday this Saturday April 1st and our regular 2 hours of gardening at  11am Sunday 2nd April. These are going to be extra special shows as it’s Ideal Worlds 17th birthday, they may even be FREE P&P on all the plants so please make sure you join myself and my great friend Angela

See you very soon

Shaun xxx

Shaun’s Spring Garden

Garden, Shaun's One To Watch

Hello again my gardening friends,

To be honest I haven’t done a lot in the garden since last time I posted, unfortunately on the few sunny days we have had I have either been at work or had already made plans to do other things so it hasn’t allowed me to do much outdoors.

My mum came to see me and stayed for a couple of days over last week and we had planned to do quite a lot of gardening but it really was too cold for her so we went out shopping for the day instead and then had a lovely evening in our village pub – the red wine there definitely warmed her up!

However, despite neglecting the garden a little over the past 10 days or so it really has started to come to life again. There are hundreds of narcissus bulbs now in flower which give the garden a true feeling of spring and my red crimson peach tree which featured on the gardening show over the weekend is now proudly coming out in the most beautiful blossom so hopefully it will bare loads of fruit. I really do love this time of year and it’s great to say goodbye to the winter and plan for the summer months and summer bedding.

I am actually in the process of choosing a new greenhouse as I want something quite big to work in with enough room to grow on hundreds of summer plug plants so I am looking forward to getting that sorted this week. I have also checked the weather for the next seven days and it looks pretty good so hopefully I will get a lot more done.

Don’t forget to tune in on Sunday from 11am to see me in our Gardening destination show for some fantastic deals on our Plant of the Month English Lavender Munstead 12x Jumbo Plugs and our Everbearer Strawberry Sweet Summer 20x Runners plus a mix of plant collections including Germanias!

Thanks again for reading

All the best,
Shaun x


Ps next time I post the clocks with have changed and the light nights will have begun- almost time to get the BBQ out!

Spruce up your garden with Fayon

Fayon's Plants
Spring has definitely sprung in my garden!

One thing I love about spring is being able to get in the garden and spruce it up.
Last week I finally got to planting February’s flower of the month, 100 heat treated freesia bulbs and 6 assorted rose plants! I was on Live on air with our resident gardening guest Angela  and I was thinking to myself, I really want these flowers for my garden too.

I learnt that if I plant the freesia’s now, they’ll bloom in time for my birthday in July, how lovely. Also I decided to buy the beautiful rose plants. Depending how much they grow by September I thought they could be involved in welcoming our guests at our wedding. Even if they are not ready by then, I’ll have years of nurturing them.

So, I went into my garden and used the compost I also bought from Ideal World, I found planters and pots which haven’t been used for ages and got planting! It was so relaxing and quiet, I’m really looking forward to spending more time sprucing up my garden.

I’ll keep you posted on their progress, I’ve always wanted to grow my own roses, so watch this space 😉

Check out Fayon’s video of her planting her lovely new Roses and Freesia over on her Ideal World facebook account at

Help your plants flourish


Just like with human beings, to keep healthy and live long plants need a good balanced diet too. For plants though, their balance is not between carbs and protein, but between Nitrogen, Phosphorous and Potassium or NPK – as well as all those little micronutrients they need – just like we may take a vitamin pill.

In the garden, each type of soil can hold varying amounts of feed in it. Clay soils bind feed in, sandy soils less so. But heavy rain can flush it all through. If growing in pots and baskets, it is even more important as peat and composts have little or no feed in – luckily our Premium Professional Compost Mix does – but even then does not last forever.

Going back to our NPK, each of these helps different parts of plants grow:

N – Nitrogen – for the leaves and stems of the plant
P – Phosphorous – boosts the roots and toughens them against diseases
K – Potassium (or Potash) – helps stimulate flowers and fruit – bigger corps and better flower displays

Just like you wouldn’t feed a newborn baby a hamburger, what we feed and when will also affect your plants too. Plus all those little “vitamin” micronutrients they need to toughen themselves up against pests and diseases. Plants can only use feed when they are growing – so when they have no leaves in Winter, no need to feed. The warmer it is, the brighter it is, the faster they grow, the more feed they need.

It may all sound a bit complicated – and if you’ve been dazzled by the array of feeds in garden centres, it is confusing. But worry not – we have the perfect solution. Take 3 bottles into the garden shed? No, our Blooming Fast Universal Soluble Feed really is perfect for all your plants – indoors or out, fruit or veg. flowers or trees – anything in fact apart from lawns.

So how do we do this? As it’s s soluble powder, one spoonful goes a long, long way. Simply dissolve one scoopful (scoop provided) into one standard gallon watering can – it turns it pale red so you can see there is feed in it. Finally, water your plants as normal around the base, or onto the pots or tubs. Avoid applying to the leaves – its just a waste, and ideally do it in the cooler evenings or early mornings too. Every 2 weeks or so is fine – there enough there for them to last that long. And each 750g tubs makes up into a whopping 10 watering can fuls of feed. Compare that to market leading brands ready to use mixes, and its less than 2% of the cost per can.

Used regularly like this you will see amazing results in your garden. More fruit, More flowers, longer lasting flowers, greener leaves, tougher plants, less diseases. All this starts with a healthy balanced plant feed – and Blooming Fast Universal Soluble Feed really is the only one you need. Team it up with our Professional Compost for even better results.

Make sure you add Blooming Fast Universal Soluble Feed to your basket now, visit

Shaun talks Gardening

Garden, Presenter Blogs

Hello to everyone, and particularly my gardening buddies out there!

From now on I will be doing a weekly gardening blog as a bit of fun and to share with you some of the things that are happening in my own garden and some of the other gardens that I help maintain. This includes my mum’s garden, the village pub’s garden and the small piece of land as you enter my village that I have promised the Parish Council that I will look after. Sounds like I’ll be a busy boy this year so it’s a good job I love gardening! I also thought it would be nice to share with you pictures of some of the plants, trees and bulbs that I have grown from the gardening shows last year and prior to that.

I didn’t have a lot of time during the week to do much in the garden and the weather has been a bit all over the place recently – sometimes sunny but often cold and wet. I’ve sure many of you will have noticed that I’ve grown a gardeners beard to keep me warm, but it doesn’t really help with the rain! Having said that I still managed to tidy up quite a bit as well as doing a lot of pruning, dead heading and revamping of my winter hanging baskets.

I don’t know how many of you remember one of the plants of the month last year – the Narcissus. They were amazing value and I planted dozens of them in my baskets and pots. They are now all in bud and should be out my next weekend, another reminder that spring is just around the corner. There is more yellow in my garden this month too as my Mimosas which I got from the gardening shows last year is also in full flower and looks beautiful as you can see from the photo.

I will forward to seeing you all on the regular gardening show this Sunday at 11pm with the lovely Angela and lots of new plants and surprises. Thanks for reading my first blog and happy gardening.

Shaun xxxx

Hayley enjoys Spring Gardening

Garden, Presenter Blogs

Hayley and Peter on a Gardening showIdeal World presenter Hayley tells us how she became interested in gardening and plants..

“What a great day Sunday was, it was our Ideal Spring Garden event and was a fabulously fun day. The fact we were busy from start to end makes you feel good because you then feel that the products were right, the prices were right and that everyone really enjoyed it.

I was lucky enough to have two shows with Lloyd Ashford-Thom with amazing deals from Spear and Jackson and then I had two hours of gardening with Peter McDermott and what a show, packed full of things we all wanted!

I’ve always loved gardening and fell in love with the beauty of plants when I started working at the garden shows, I absolutely loved Chelsea Flower Show.

Hayley and Lloyd on their Spear and Jackson showI’ve had many jobs, for years as a singer and dancer but also for many years as a demonstrator of products at shows and exhibitions – Chelsea Flower show was one of these shows we did for years and it was amazing. Sadly we never really had time to look around but we loved the atmosphere as they were always such wonderful busy days! They were long days 8am till 8pm, but come rain or shine or gale force winds the show was always packed. The weather never stopping the gardener, they still came!

Staying in London was always so expensive and trying to find somewhere affordable near to Chelsea was a nightmare. One year we rented a flat which from the window  (when you stand on your toes and lean out the window!) you could see the Thames. Not long after we were there, we were lucky enough to see the Queens Diamond Jubilee celebrations and they sailed right past our flat on the Royal barge.

It was a great character flat but was further from the show then we thought. We would always try and stay in walking distance but not this time , first we did have a long walk to the tube station and then a tube to Sloane Square and a final walk to the show! It meant very, very early starts but however early we left we always seemed to be running past Chelsea Royal Hospital in the hope we would be at the stand by 8am in time for opening! And always forgetting the bag check at the gate! Perhaps we needed to not go to bed at all and should just turn around and head straight back out the door as soon as we walked in to the flat! We still loved it though, what a show to make you fall in love with gardening.

Make sure you tune in this week for a whole week of gardening shows, including 6pm tonight, 9am Saturday and 11am-1pm Sunday.

Have a happy week and countdown to spring!”

What on Earth are Air Plants?!

Garden, News

What on Earth are Air Plants?!

Gone are the days of the wilting pot plant in the corner. Air Plants have cemented themselves as the new kid on block for self- sufficient household plants. It may sound like an idea straight from a Sci-fi novel but these root-less plants survive simply by obtaining nutrients from the air, which means not having to worry about constant watering, pruning or feeding! Perfect, right? So if you’re a proficient plant killer you’ll be pleased to hear these little  guys only require a small spritz of water once a week. Continue reading