Monday, 7 July 2008

Grapevines Not Grass In British Gardens?

Most people are familiar with the prediction of longer, hotter summers as an inevitable result of climate change and global warming and, indeed, some people might welcome the prospect with visions of enjoying the outdoors more, but such a change in our weather could have serious consequences for the beloved British garden.

Everything from hedges to plants, trees and the traditional British lawn will face a battle for survival if water becomes scarcer, summers become drier and winters become wetter.

A wealth of information has already been published on the subject and there's plenty of advice for gardeners who want to keep a colourful and flourishing garden throughout these changing times. For example, if you grow delphiniums and lupins, you will already know that they need moisture retentive soil and do not enjoy drier weather. Therefore you might want to consider planting flowers that are more drought tolerant. Growing fruit should become easier too in warmer weather and it might not be long before we see garden centres stocking more exotic fruit trees, even grapevines and palm trees.

Serious about growing grapevines in Britain? Find out how to grow them courtesy of this BBC Gardening page.

But what about grassed lawns? Many people are already concerned about having to use pesticides to keep their lawns looking green but warmer, drier summers and wetter winters will make lawn maintenance even more difficult. An artificial lawn may well be the answer - you'll save on water and pesticides and yellowed grass in summer will be a thing of the past. Wetter winters too will be much more bearable knowing that mud from the lawn won't find its way into the house. Take a look at this recent installation of an artificial lawn for a customer in Cheshire (as shown in the photograph).

Amongst the sources of information on global warming and gardening are:
The Royal Horticultural Society's report - Gardening in the Global Greenhouse

The Met Office's dedicated section on Climate Change