This article has been written by Rachel McLeod on behalf of Planting Works

As we stride through Spring into May, we can already feel the benefit of warmer days and lighter nights. Our gardens have woken up from their long winter slumber and the growing season has commenced. Frequent refreshing rain showers encourage growth and the warming sunshine rejuvenates planting areas. Emerging Autumn bulbs liven up containers and borders with their fresh colours. Once glorious daffodils give way to stunning tulips with their bright splashes of colour.  Spring flower vase displays freshen and brighten interiors with their distinctive look and sumptuous perfume. Garden shrubs and hedges snap into life with new growth and colour. Forsythia’s bright yellow flowers burst from borders and hedges and brilliant blue ceanothus flowers light up planting borders. Crimson photinia displays blaze in the sunshine as dogwoods transform with their show of new leaves. Elegant rhododendron and camellia displays bring sumptuous colours which shine even on cloudy days. Take a moment beside a pond and you will see an abundance of wildlife from bees to water boatmen and tadpoles. Iris and impressive gunnera frame the edges with water lily foliage peeping out through the surface ready to burst with their exotic flowers.

Woodlands are carpeted with wonderful displays of bluebells as the tree canopies reach for blue skies. A magical colour change has taken place across the forest floor from earlier white wild garlic flowers, purple crocus and sunshine daffodils to a sea of blue. Saplings lay across the forest floor looking for light and space to begin their journey upwards. Miniature holly bushes grow amongst the fallen leaves along with moss and piles of twigs and fallen branches. Look carefully and you’ll see a host of wildlife amongst the debris working hard to form a habitat. Fascinating patches of lichen can also be found on bark, branches and across the woodland floor in varying shades of green interwoven with brambles, ivy and leaf mulch. Fungi thrive on decaying wood and leaf matter and come in all shapes and sizes. Look out for the “Scarlet elf cup”, “Chicken of the wood” and “Common inkcap” at this time of year. Remember that fungi can be highly toxic so don’t taste or touch any that you can’t identify as safe!

Our wonderful trees have begun their awesome transformation. A particular favourite are the Horse Chestnuts with their magnificent candelabra flowers. Clouds of blossom waft dreamily from heavily laden fruit trees and the show stopping leaves of Acers burst through beds and borders in dazzling shades of rich bronze red and lime green.

Refreshing dew covers lawns and grass areas each morning, providing much needed moisture to stimulate growth. The distinctive smell of freshly mown grass once again fills the air with the promise of time spent outdoors and in our gardens. Thoughts turn once again to sunny days sat outside relaxing and entertainment spaces for happy times and celebrations.  Creating a garden that you will cherish is both challenging and rewarding, as well as daunting.  Planting works is a local garden design company that specialises in garden design and planting. If you feel inspired to create a haven in your own garden or just want to make your plants work better for you, then now’s the time to discuss planting schemes with our experts. All designs are carefully drawn from scratch by Victoria, after visiting your garden and discussing your requirements and planting ideas. Once you are happy to go ahead with your garden design, we can commence the transformation along with local landscape gardeners and contractors. We also offer a garden maintenance service to ensure that your garden and planting areas continue to be well cared for and thrive