Some of the best gardening and flower shows you must visit this year

There are dozens – no, HUNDREDS – of different garden and flower shows and exhibitions each year in the UK. The most famous of these shows are undoubtedly the RHS’s, with RHS Chelsea Flower Show, which is taking place this month, being the most famous and highly-anticipated of them all.

But there are plenty of other shows to choose from across the country, each offering something different to explore.

This month, Plant Lovers’ Day (27th May) at Creake Abbey, Norfolk is now in its tenth year and brings together specialist plant nurseries to show off their stunning collections of plants, flowers, herbs and shrubs. Set in a beautiful location it makes a great day out for all the family, and all profits from the day goes to charity.

The Blenheim Flower Show (23rd – 25th June) is a popular exhibit that takes place in the grounds of the breath-taking Blenheim Palace – one of the largest palaces in the UK. Featuring everything garden-related from food and drink, show gardens and even Alan Titchmarsh!

blenheim palace

If you’re looking for something a little different, then the new Garden & Harvest Festival (16th – 17th September) at Forde Abbey in Somerset may be just the ticket. It’s in September, and will feature autumnal gardening ideas, demonstrations and harvest-related entertainment. A great alternative to the spring and summer flower shows!

forde abbey

Don’t make the mistake of thinking you can only go to a garden or flower show if you’re a gardening expert. In fact, these shows may be even better for the beginner gardener because it can be a great introduction to the world of horticulture. With thousands of plants and products to discover, it’s a great way to get started!

http://www.cobragarden.co.uk/

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Will you be celebrating National Gardening Week? …You should be!

National Gardening Week, launched by the RHS to encourage people to dig in (literally) and do some gardening, is 10th – 16th April.

The benefits of gardening are more than just planting some bulbs and hoping that they grow the following spring – it is also a great way to stay healthy and happy.

After a long day in the garden, we at Cobra like nothing more than taking a step back and seeing the fruits of our labour. It is a chance to be creative, experiment and get some exercise.

Gardening is a wonderful opportunity to get children involved too, helping them learn about plants, wildlife and the process of nurturing a plant from just a seed.

If you’re looking for some ‘me’ time, it can also be a therapeutic activity to undertake on your own. Research suggests that spending just five minutes in the garden and simply looking at nature can help to reduce blood pressure and increase feelings of happiness!

There are so many things you can do to get involved with National Gardening Week, whether it’s cleaning your driveway, planting herbs or mowing the lawn (We have lawnmowers!).1347885647_f6c27b1341_m

For more information on National Gardening Week, visit http://nationalgardeningweek.org.uk/

http://www.cobragarden.co.uk/

 

Welcome to the Cobra garden…

cobragarden

Here at Cobra we’re delighted to say we had a successful, enjoyable day exhibiting at the Garden Press Event at the Barbican Centre in London last month.

Over 250 journalists visited the show – we tried to talk to as many as possible to show off our latest products!

With over 115 products in the range, the Cobra range of gardening equipment offers something for everyone. Within the range are 50 mowers that cover all spectrums from electric to petrol and now lithium-ion battery too with cutting widths ranging from 13” to 22”. There are also rear rollers, self-propelled options, professional models and now even hover mowers!

The newest products to the Cobra range include additions to both the 24 volt and 40 volt lithium-ion ranges that were introduced last year with a new 16” rear roller mower, a grass trimmer, a chainsaw, a blower and a hedge trimmer becoming available.

We were excited to showcase our new petrol hedge cutter, electric cylinder mower and cordless ranges at the press event.

Our stand (and our cupcakes!) went down very well and we are already looking forward to next year’s show.

www.cobragarden.co.uk

New Year, New Colour

Every year there is endless speculation about what the next trends will be; technology, fashion, design, gardening. Nothing is out of bounds these days!

Pantone, the world-renowned authority on colour, has recently announced their Colour Of The Year for 2017 – Greenery – a bright shade bursting with vitality. We at Cobra think it’s an excellent choice!

greenery

Their official description is “a fresh and zesty yellow-green shade that evokes the first days of spring when nature’s greens revive, restore and renew… The more submerged people are in modern life, the greater their innate craving to immerse themselves in the physical beauty and inherent unity of the natural world.”

And in the current turbulent social and political climate, seeking a stronger connection with nature and going back to basics might be exactly what we need.

Greenery also reflects the world’s growing concern for our environment; our lifestyle choices, design ideas, architecture and efforts to recycle and reuse as much as possible are values that continue to resonate on a global scale.

Green is synonymous is the outdoors and gardens – what’s more green than grass?! At Cobra we’re passionate about green, green grass and keeping lawns healthy so we were delighted when we heard Pantone’s choice for 2017.

So, here’s to a greener, happier, healthier 2017!

www.cobragarden.co.uk

www.pantone.com

Starting 2017 the green way

We all know that Christmas can sometimes get out of hand. There’s tinsel and glitter everywhere, enough chocolate to last you a year and your gift budget went out of the window weeks ago. But don’t worry, there is one thing you can do with your real Christmas tree that will leave you with a big, eco-friendly smile on your face.

mulch

If you chose a real Christmas tree rather than an artificial one, your carbon footprint is already lower than if you had bought a fake one. To go the extra mile, why not turn your Christmas tree into mulch and give it back to your garden this year?

Mulch is material made up of decaying plant matter such as leaves and bark. By using it on top of your existing soil, it can be beneficial to your plants in a number of ways. It will prevent weeds from sprouting through, help retain moisture, ease water drainage and provide an excellent environment for worms and other insects that your garden relies on.

Start by sawing off your Christmas tree’s branches and leaves. Using Cobra’s 40v Cordless Chainsaw will make light work of it – there are no wires to get in the way and its 14inch Oregon bar and chain will cut with ease. Then, cut the tree trunk into small, manageable pieces.

chainsaw-captured-from-website

Cobra’s Quiet Shredder with a large 50 litre collection box will finish the job off quickly and efficiently. The Cobra QS2500 quiet drum shredder is supplied with a practical plunger to help feed through the branches, trunk and leaves and will help to speed up the shredding of heavier loads.

shredder

What would normally be an impossible task without this shredder can be completed within minutes. Cobra’s Quiet Shredder also has a safety mechanism which cuts the motor if the collection box is removed. For extra safety, always remember to wear protective gloves and eyewear when using the shredder.

…and that’s it – your mulch is ready to use! You can spread it around your borders, underneath planted shrubs and in your pots – the garden will thank you!

 

GARDENING JOBS FOR THE MONTH – DECEMBER

December is a quiet time in the garden, many of the plants are lying dormant, waiting for the first warmth of spring to emerge. Nevertheless, there are still plenty of jobs that you can be getting on with, particularly preparing for the new year.

If you haven’t already, you should be protecting your plants through December and January from the cold snaps. Move any potted plants to a sheltered area, such as a greenhouse or conservatory. Alternatively, group potted plants together close to a wall of your house, garage or shed, this way they will be less exposed to strong winds and the colder weather.

It is a good idea to clear fallen leaves from driveways and pathways using a leaf blower. Cobra’s BV65-24v Cordless Blower is the perfect tool for the job; lightweight, compact and powerful. Once it rains (let’s face it, it will!), leaves that have fallen on the ground quickly begin to rot and become slippery. If left, a winter frost will make them stick to the ground, turn hard and icy. The Cordless Blower by Cobra allows you to quickly and easily clear your garden of leaves, making it safer and looking much tidier!bv6524v-angle-2-1

Now is the best time to prune apple and pear trees, as the leaves will have fallen off and the plant itself is dormant. If you have neglected to prune your trees for a while don’t despair, it can be made simply with Cobra’s P20E Electric Powered Pole Pruner – designed specifically to reach awkward heights and angles to prune effectively. With an extendable bar than can reach up to 2.7 metres, you can prune longer branches with ease.p20e-pole-pruner

Start by removing dying, dead, diseased, damaged or weak branches. Remove older branches by cutting back to the origin, and don’t be afraid to cut any branches back that have grown too high, too wide or are causing congestion at the centre of the tree.

Cobra’s Pole Pruner is also ideal for cutting firewood! At this time of year, who is going to say no to a cosy, log-burning fire?

 

 

 

 

Know your engine

Here at Cobra we pride ourselves on offering something for everyone which is why we have electric, battery and petrol powered models available (we also now have hand models too…).

Petrol machinery often requires a tiny bit more TLC than the other, particularly at this time of year, but it’s certainly worth it!

The first tip for getting to know your engine may seem a bit obvious but be sure to read the instructions! Each machine is different and the operator manual contains a treasure trove of information and advice.

M40C Angle 2.jpg

If you’ve lost your Cobra manual then visit w as each product page has instruction manuals available to download.  Another vital source of advice is your local dealer who can help you with any questions. Click here to find your local Cobra garden machinery dealer.

The next step is to get familiar with your engine to find out about prepping it before starting, as 2-stroke and 4-stroke engines vary in the steps required to get going!

2-stroke engines require 1 part 2-stroke oil to every 40 parts petrol (1:40). We cannot recommend strongly enough how important it is to use high quality oil to protect the engine and extend its lifespan. Again your local dealer can assist you with this.  Once you’ve mixed the two, carefully pour them into the engine being careful not to spill anything.

A 4-stroke engine requires oil and petrol separately, and will have separate tanks and indicators for this. Identify the oil reservoir first, check the dipstick and it if needs a top up pour the oil in as directed in the instructions. Then add fresh unleaded petrol to the fuel tank. Unleaded petrol deteriorates very quickly and “tired” fuel can cause equipment starting problems so keep it fresh!

When it comes to winter storage be sure to clean down equipment properly and drain the fuel tank or add a fuel stabiliser to protect the carburetor. 4-stroke engines will require the oil draining at the end of the season too. Clean off any old grass cuttings – a blower is useful for this – and lightly spray the cutting blade with an aerosol lubricant. Most importantly, store it somewhere secure and dry. You’ll definitely appreciate it when it comes to spring and your machinery starts with complete ease!!