Monty Don issues warning to BBC fans over ‘biggest story in gardening’: ‘Really important’

Gardeners’ World: Monty Don praises Clare Austin’s knowledge

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On Friday evening, the final episode in the Gardeners’ World winter specials aired on BBC Two. Monty Don returned following an absence in episode two and was joined by the likes of Adam Frost, Carol Klein and even a guest appearance from comedian Joe Lycett. However, when turning his attention to houseplants, something Monty referred to as the “biggest story in gardening over the last few years”, he had some wise words of warning for those tending to them in the winter months.

The moment came after the Gardeners’ World host heard from guest James who’d been vlogging his gardening journey at home.

James had grown all manner of fauna in his garden but it was his Brugmansia that stole the show.

So much so, as he signed off, James admitted: “The smell of this flower at night is absolutely intoxicating.”

As the BBC cameras returned to Longmeadow and Monty, the presenter explained why.

“Of course, the reason why James’ Brugmansia are smelling so good in the evening is because that’s when they attract their pollinator,” he began.

Monty went on: “And I say pollinator in the single (sense) because they are pollinated by the hawk moth, drawn in by the fragrance as dusk falls.”

This tied in nicely with Monty’s next segment when he wanted to discuss the surge in the sales of houseplants.

“Now, house plants have been the biggest story in gardening over the last few years and so many more people are now enjoying them, which is fantastic,” he added.

Monty went on to warn, however: “But it’s really important to control the watering regime over the winter months,

“Because you’ve got your central heating on, the light levels are falling really low and the plants need a lot less water than they do in spring or summer.”

Offering advice on how to remedy his caution, Monty explained: “But do spray – get yourself a sprayer if you haven’t got one and give them a spray.

“That will do them far more good,” he guaranteed.

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Delving further into the topic, he concluded: “Now by far and away the most popular house plant in the UK is the poinsettia. 

“We apparently buy over eight million of them every year, the vast majority of these are, of course, for Christmas.”

Monty then cut to two sisters who’ve grown and sold the popular houseplants their entire lives.

And weighing in on Monty’s advice as well as his guests’ exploration of the poinsettias, a number of viewers were keen to share their praise.

Twitter user @foggyknitter recalled their own experience: “Poinsettias love heat, I had one by the TV one year &it kept growing over the screen where it was warm! I moved it, it grew back etc. #GardenersWorld.”

Eileen Elder weighed in: “Wow those poinsettia look lovely. I’m useless with them, the leaves always fell off so now its Christmas cactus for me. the orange ones and the white ones are different #GardenersWorld.”

“I like these poinsettia folk,  #GardenersWorld,” @TheMainstand added while Lal Octavia joked: “#GardenersWorld update: the word poinsettia has been said so many times it no longer has any meaning, now sounds like a minor Doctor Who villain. (Lovely segment though, and such beautiful colours and variegation of poinsettia, the girls growing them should be very proud).”

And Cass Blakeman surmised: “Best thing on TV tonight: #GardenersWorld [applause emoji].” (sic)

Gardeners’ World: Winter Specials are available to stream on BBC iPlayer now.

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