Green Living

We answer your gardening and plant questions

From the experts at Kings Plant Barn

How often should the soil be replaced in pots?
If a plant is going to be kept in a pot long term, the soil won’t need replenishing unless the plant is going to be repotted. But the nutrients should be replenished regularly with a slow-release fertiliser, such as Kings Pot Recharger; apply the plant food as per the instructions. If you are repotting a plant, it is best to replace the soil every time; the old soil can be mixed into the garden and will add some structure to garden beds.

My garden is either water-logged in winter or super-dry in summer. Is there an easy way to overcome this?
It sounds like your soil has a lot of clay in it. This can be altered by adding organic matter and gypsum to the soil. Dig up the ground and add an application of gypsum, then mix in plenty of compost and sheep pellets to the soil. This will help to slowly break down the clay and improve the structure of the soil.

As you can see, my gardenias are not doing too well. As well as leaves yellowing and falling off, it looks like something is eating the leaves. I have been fertilising and have used Conqueror oil. There are buds on the plants, but one has been there for months and not flowering.
Gardenias can be a bit fickle, especially at this time of the year when they are trying to produce flower buds. Feed regularly throughout the year with Kings Azalea, Camellia & Rhododendron Food. Apply a dose of Sequestron to keep the leaves from yellowing. Make sure the soil is moist and keep an eye out for scale insect on the branches and stems.

Can you please tell me what is wrong with this aloe vera plant, and can you let me know how I can make it nice and green again?
I suggest repotting your plant into a larger pot, as it has outgrown this one. Plant it into Kings Potting Mix in a pot that is about 20cm in diameter. As you are repotting, cut away all the dried-up leaves. Although aloes are a succulent, they do best when the soil is kept just moist, but not allowed to sit in any water. Position your plant so that it gets full sun. Start feeding monthly in spring, summer, and autumn with Kings Liquid Fast Food.

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