The potting shed
Wanted - Knowledgable gardener in Kent for (paid) advice/consultancy
Do you have a gardening club near you, you could join they are a great for information. You might find someone who will come and show you how to do thing as a friend. Also most clubs have a seed and plant swoop and some have a person come and give talks with a question and answer session after. I'm off in a bit to met with a lady who has an allotment I met her at a club. I have some seed she would like and she has offered me a Rhubarb crown.
There are experienced & professional gardeners out there but most people don't want to pay a lot for maintenance so there has been a bit of a "race to the bottom" with people setting up as gardeners when they are just labourers. As you say you have had the garden landscaped & planted maybe ask them if they can recommend anyone for maintenance. The professional Gardeners Guild should have lists of people who are qualified but they will not be cheap. Perhaps you could do this short term while you are learning.
AB Still learning
Some good advice above.
I would also suggest finding out about local garden clubs - I would think there are several in your area.
Go along to a few meetings. You'll learn something from the speakers but, if there's one you can get to regularly, you may also find somebody there who would be willing to spend some time looking at your garden with you and taking you under their wing to help you build your confidence.
It may even be worth emailing on or two of the club secretaries to see if they know whether any of their members would be happy to help.
We have a village 'jungle drums' (local emails) and if one came round saying that a new(ish) resident would like the sort of help and advice you're after - I would offer and I can think of a few others who would too. I wouldn't want any payment and would just look on it as a way to meet and make new friends.
Gardeners tend to be a pretty generous lot - both in terms of sharing plants and sharing advice.
It's worked already on this forum🙂
Heaven is ... sitting in the garden with a G&T and a cat while watching the sun go down
Thanks for the advice Dee - there seems to be a 'horticultural society' near me - I'll try them out to see if they're interested in accommodating a complete novice.
My mum has a " Gavin the gardener" to help out, now Dad has gone. He mows and is allowed to weed what is obvious, but has to be closely supervised for pruning and anything else, much as Dad was after he pruned the shrub border into a hedge just before it flowered. He knew he shouldn't, he did it while mum was out shopping. He didn't like the way they sprawled, full of flower buds.
Pruning is the big thing, prune at the wrong time, you lose all the flowers. Unless you like round blobs of foliage, learn what the plant is and time to do anything, if at all, to it.
You don't stop doing new things because you get old, you get old because you stop doing new things.
Girona, Catalunya, Northen Spain
Some great advice above, but I’m wondering, since you had the garden professionally planted, and presumably (hopefully) they have selected plants with knowlege of your growing conditions such as soil type, ph, aspect, sun etc., would it be an idea to ask them to do a day or two of consultancy to take you through all the plants and what they require in terms of maintenance? It they have planted it, they should know how it will perform, how big it will get, how to prune, plus what needs feeding and cosseting and what will happily do its own thing.
Also, did they provide a full planting plan so you know what is what? You could always post a pic of that, and your garden, on here (we are a nosy lot and always love pics) and you will get loads of pointers.
I have been doing ornamental gardening for just about two years now, self-taught via books and the internet plus fab advice on this forum - and nobody minds if you ask daft questions. I have a huge amount to p learn still, but I amaze myself sometimes with how confident I feel now compared to how I started out. I did research and select my own plants, some worked, some didn’t, but I think that helped. You learn as much from mistakes as successes. So get to know your own plants, don’t be afraid to change things you dont like or don’t work and don’t worry, enjoy the learning process and enjoy your garden!
A very good comment from Nollie regarding your garden being 'professionally' planted .
Any company doing this will have (or should have) a modicum of knowledge regarding plant requisites without having to refer to a guide-book . They should know immediately from the 'top of their heads' !
pH requirements , aspect , eventual sizes of plants and even their original habitats on the planet can be of immense help in deciding planting locations . Nearly every garden contains a particular microclimate ; on one side a plant will thrive , whilst the same species will succumb in a different locale .
One point here though ; don't rely on advice from your local garden centre . From personal experience ,most of them are useless anyway !
Have you a reputable local nursery in proximity ?
Personally , I think gardening is a learning curve ; even though there is a vast amount of knowledge and skill on this forum , there are probably no 'experts' in any particular subject. I think everyone has made horrendous errors in the past .
There is always something more to learn .
I have been gardening (now in partnership) for over thirty-years ; classing myself as having a fairly good relationship and skill with most plants . Try as I may though , fruit and veg doesn't interest me one iota , so won't be practical to ask for help on that one !
Good luck anyway !
Thanks everyone for your helpful advice. I'm going to start reading up, watching YouTube videos and posting questions on GW.
I also met a dad on the school run who is a keen gardener and is happy to pop round and give me a bit of advice.
Central Norfolk UK
Nothing like an interest in gardening for making friends
and youll have all that money you were going to spend on advice to spend on plants and seeds ... go you have a greenhouse (yet
“I am not lost, for I know where I am. But however, where I am may be lost.”
Winnie the Pooh