Beth Chatto was an inspiration to gardeners, says Peter
Heavy mulching with organic matter, such as garden compost, is the ideal treatment for both heavy and light, dry soils.
Weed control in dense plantings can be achieved by applying diluted systemic weed killer via a sponge held with gloved hands. Dabbing it on a few leaves on each weed is all it takes.
Make the most of space by growing plants in containers above soil full of tree roots. Busy Lizzies in grow bags, for example, will take some shade and become ground coverers if kept well watered.
Early in the day is the perfect time to visit the Beth Chatto Gardens in Essex on hot summer days.